Use and impact of public beneficial ownership registers: Denmark


Recent experiences in Denmark show how effective BOT reforms can help an ecosystem of users advance domestic policy objectives. It also shows how non-government users are a critical part of this ecosystem, and how both government and regulated entities rely on these users. These user stories should be front and centre in informing what access to BOI should look like in the future. Effective BOT reforms, including digital identity verification, may also provide an alternative to publishing a large number of secondary identifiers, thereby decreasing the risk of identity theft and infringement on privacy.

At the time of writing, Denmark is still in the process of defining how developments in the EU will translate domestically. In a written response to journalists, the DBA has reaffirmed the CJEU position that journalists and civil society organisations have legitimate interest by default and must have access to BOI in the CVR, and revealed possible options under discussion. These include potentially requiring journalists to log in to the system using their government digital ID combined with a declaration of faith that they are journalists, which may be subject to random checks.[78] Ideally, this would allow for the same level and type of access as journalists have currently, and should be combined with assurances that identities of CVR register users would be kept secured and not be linked to specific information about use, except in cases of misuse. This would provide a recourse in cases of misuse, but fundamentally be based on mutual trust.

“It would be a large step backwards if the CJEU judgement would implicate the loss of access to BO data for our member companies. This would force them to rely only on other sources for controlling BO data and company control structure, which would be more time-consuming. To ensure an efficient effort against money laundering the EU and national states must work to reduce bureaucracy both for companies and customers [in carrying out KYC checks].”[79]

Simon Bay, the Danish Association of Chartered Estate Agents (DE)


[78] Sebastian Goos, “Stor ændring: Journalister kan tvinges til at bruge MitID”, Journalisten, 6 September 2023,

[79] Email interview with Simon Bay, Legal Affairs, DE, 7 September 2023.