Hamburg Metropolitan Region – Chemicals

The sector – Good elements and connections

The strong development of the chemical industry in the Hamburg Metropolitan Region is due primarily to the availability of the raw materials it needs. Rock salt, for example, the basic product of salt deposits nearby, is readily available. Other raw materials can be brought in cheaply through the Port of Hamburg. Crude oil, the feedstock for the petrochemical industry, is mostly imported, but off our shores there is also drilling for oil.

The chemicals industry in Hamburg Metropolitan Region employs 43,000 people. Between 2006-07 the workforce grew by 2.2 per cent. Around nine per cent of sales in the chemical industry in Germany are produced by the Hamburg Metropolitan Region’s three federal states. In 2006, 282 companies achieved sales of more than EUR 14bn.

Thanks to good infrastructure and transport connections for basic products, the regional sector concentrates on production of basic chemicals and other feedstock, notably in Stade, Brunsbüttel, Harburg and Walsrode. Petrochemicals and plastics industry operations complement these locations. In addition, numerous companies in and around Hamburg have made a name for themselves with consumer-related products, including the famous brands Nivea, Schwarzkopf and Dove.

Excellent infrastructure, outstanding research institutions and universities round off the list of locational plus points. Information about cooperation opportunities is available from organisations such as VCI-Nord, the North German chemical industries association, ChemCoast, the association of North German chemicals operations, or the growth promotion initiative, Süderelbe AG, all of which look after the sector’s interests.