In a referendum held last Sunday, the Danish people have voted in favour of the Unitary Patent and the Unified Patent Court. With a turnout of 55.8%, the yes vote was 60.45% compared to 36.19% voting no. In due course, the Danish Parliament will ratify the Agreement on the UPC, making it the fifth out of the thirteen ratifications needed (including at least France, Germany and the UK) before it can enter into force. The four other member states that have ratified the agreement so far are Austria, Belgium, France and Malta.
The Danish Prime Minister Helle Thorning-Schmidt was pleased to have won the approval of the electorate, despite a scare campaign being run by the nationalist party (Dansk Folkeparti). Attention will now turn to other countries where a referendum is being held, including Ireland - forecast to take place later this year.
In the meantime, Denmark now has the choice of whether to try and join the Nordic regional court alongside Sweden, Lithuania, Latvia and Estonia, or to establish a local division of its own.