East Frisia & Papenburg


The development of the economic area of East Frisia and Papenburg - with its strong mix of tourism, wind power, seaports, shipyards and the automotive industry – was highly influenced by its proximity to the North Sea.
The first settlement  in Emden (where the Chamber of Commerce and Industry is based)  dates back to the year 800 and started off as a small trading post. In 1600 Port Emden became one of Europe‘s busiest commercial ports , with close economic  ties not just to Europe‘s biggest  harbors,  but also to the far east, especially to the Canton Region in China.
Throughout the 20th century Emden was the largest trading hub for coal meant for export  and imported iron ore needed for steal production in the Ruhr Valley - that’s how Emden earned its name "seaport of the Ruhr Valley"
Today, the port of Emden is among Europe‘s top 3 automotive transshipment hubs. In 2016, approx. 1,3 Million cars have been handled in Emden,  only exceeded in volume by  the Belgian Port Zeebrugge and the German Port of Bremerhaven. Besides motor vehicles manufactured in the nearby Volkswagen plant,  wind turbines is the main commercial good handled at Port Emden. Emden’s  total transshipment volume amounts to 6.1 Million tons.
Despite our long maritime tradition, renewables are a significant driver for our local economy and are becoming the backbone of East Frisia. Clean Energy is an  important pillar of our national energy supply. Thus, a complete refurbishment of our entire energy grid infrastructure and a fast and efficient expansion of our current grid is inevitable.  In 2015 East Frisia, or most parts of it, became offically a model region for the  federal Enera Project. East Frisia‘s circumstances today allow a glimpse into a situation many other regions in Germany will be facing in the near future, e.g. a giant network with a huge amount of independent energy suppliers, therefore offering perfect testing grounds.