Backed by a positive development in 2015, the Hamburg economy welcomes 2016 with cautious optimism, according to a recent business survey by the Hamburg Chamber of Commerce. This evaluation is also reflected by the annual result of HWF Hamburg Business Development Corporation.
7,399 Jobs Created of Secured
In 2015, Hamburg business developers created and secured 7,399 jobs (2014: 4,334). With the support from HWF, 106 (2014: 99) companies from home or abroad relocated to Hamburg or expanded their business in Hamburg. The companies supported by HWF created 1,514 (2014: 852) new jobs. Further 5,885 (2014: 3.482) existing jobs were secured. 333.18 (2014: 179.20) million euro of investments were thus triggered off. 121 (2014: 75) received competent consultancy on their relocation and expansion projects. For two companies, HWF found suitable locations in the Hamburg Metropolitan Region.
Pleased about the annual result, HWF’s managing director Dr. Rolf Strittmatter said: “We were able to improve results in nearly all areas, and particularly in employment. Once again, the Hanseatic City of Hamburg confirmed itself as the economic centre of Northern Europe.” For the year 2016, the Hamburg Senate has announced plans to accelerate the development of HWF into a one stop agency for investment commenced back in 2015.
One Stop Agency for Investments
Hamburg is a city full of strengths and opportunities. With more than five million inhabitants, its metropolitan area is one of the strongest economic regions in Europe. Its core industries and its port provide the city with a rich educational and scientific landscape and a basis for work and prosperity. High-tech and creative industries coin its future. Business development is crucial to this development in Hamburg, and links it with a vision for the future. Frank Horch, Hamburg Minister of the Economy, Transport, and Innovation: “The HWF has to make offers you cannot refuse. It has to be the key contact, core incubator of ideas, central service provider, and competent helpline for businesses that have settled in Hamburg and consider expansion, and for companies planning to relocate to Hamburg. And that is exactly what we are doing right now: to develop the HWF into a one stop agency that can act quickly, efficiently and for the benefit of the location. First successes can be seen in the annual result of 2015.“
Great Chances for Growth in Hamburg’s East
The annual press conference of the HWF was held at HWF’s project office in the industrial area Billbrook / Rothenburgsort. In the frame of the development of Hamburg’s East, the industrial area Billbrook / Rothenburgsort is quintessential to the planning of the Hamburg Senate. Thus, the Ministry of Economy Transport and Innovation (BWVI) commissioned both HWF Hamburg Business Development Corporation and IBA Hamburg GmbH to draw up a plan of action plan to modernise and revitalise the industrial area Billbrook / Rothenburgsort. The aim is to better exploit the potential of the industrial site in order to create sustainable jobs in the city. Next to securing the business of existing companies, new enterprise with a high added value are to be relocated to the area (www.industriestandort-billbrook.de).
300 New Enterprises From 49 Countries
In 2015, the HWF dealt with 62 (61) projects from 23 (20) countries. When comparing the number of newly created jobs (309) to the number of acquisition, the average is 4.98. Overall, international investments saw more than 300 enterprises from 49 countries set up in Hamburg in 2015. In most cases, they were commercial enterprises or start-ups, particularly by financial investments in the property sector. 1.54 jobs per company were created in this context. HWF, however, focuses on attracting companies that become operational in Hamburg and create jobs.
Stable Level of China Activities
A striking feature of 2015 was the slump of HWF’s Chinese projects, with figures declining from 20 (2014) to twelve last year. This is due to the fact that even though many Chinese enterprises still sought HWF’s comprehensive consultancy, they then contacted other specialists, for instance lawyers, to handle their visa application. In 2015, a total of 43 companies from China and Hong Kong relocated to Hamburg. All these settlements were initiated by HWF’s marketing activities. Despite the Russian crisis, the number of settlements was thus being maintained on a good stable level.
Positive Outlook on 2016
The HWF is optimistic about the new year, and confident to reach and surpass 2015’s high level in regard to expanding business in Hamburg. HWF thus sees its main task not to generate demand, but to create the space for expansion. Given the current competition for land between commercial, public and residential needs, this very challenging task can only be solved in co-operation with the Hamburg Senate and Hamburg’s district administrations. The HWF will therefore prepare proposals on how to achieve the Senate’s objective to optimise the development and allocation of urban commercial plots in order to promote economic growth.
Hamburg – The Perfect Place for European HQs
In regard to international settlements, HWF will flexibly to changing market conditions in regard to source markets. Regional conflicts in the Middle East as well as the decline in industrial production in China raise fears of damages to the global economy. In 2016, the HWF will thus specifically address companies with German headquarters in Hamburg, but European headquarters elsewhere, to relocate these central functions also to Hamburg.
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