Liverpool business and trade mission forging links with Hamburg

Steve Rotheram, Jill Gallard, British Ambassador to Germany, Dr Peter Tschentscher

Liverpool’s City Region Mayor and a city delegation is currently in Germany as part of a business and trade mission to forge closer political, trade and cultural links between Liverpool and the Hamburg city state.

The mission, backed by the British Embassy and the UK’s Department for Business and Trade, is running from November 20 to 23.

Senior officials, politicians and policy experts will build relationships and share experiences around a raft of strategic priorities including transport, skills, culture, regeneration and net zero. The mission will focus on the economic issues affecting both regions and strengthen connections between two great port cities dating back many years.

The visit builds on existing ties between the city region and the City of Hamburg, a municipality and city-state within the Federal Republic of Germany with an urban population of around 2.5 million people.

Steve Rotheram, Mayor of the Liverpool City Region, said: “Being proud port cities, both of our areas have served as gateways to the world, which helped to turn us into the vibrant, diverse communities we are today. With so much history between us, and so many shared strengths, it’s only right that we want to forge even stronger ties with our friends in Germany.

“Together, we want to shape more prosperous, outward-looking futures for our two areas and to fulfil their vast potential in advanced computing, life sciences, sustainable development and digitalisation. I can’t wait to see what kind of opportunities this partnership will unlock for us both in the years to come.”

The high level visit will see the first face-face meeting between Mayor Rotheram and First Mayor of Hamburg, Peter Tschentscher, head of the current government of the city state.

A networking reception organised by the British Embassy will focus on the promotion of closer trade and investment ties, including clean tech, digital/gaming, life and health sciences – linking German businesses and trade associations with the Liverpool City Region.

A discussion around employment and skills will highlight the German system of dual vocational training (TVET), a blend of classroom learning and on-the-job training credited with producing a highly skilled and flexible workforce.

Cultural leaders will work on a potential collaboration to promote the history of the Beatles in Liverpool and Hamburg, where the teenage band famously cut their teeth.

Senior policy officers will discuss public transport and urban mobility including a tour of innovative projects. A visit to the Port of Hamburg, the third largest port in Europe, will be followed by talks around decarbonisation, green hydrogen and the refuelling of buses and lorries.

Following this, a guided walk through the biggest regeneration project in the EU, the HafenCity district, will focus on Hamburg’s approach to urban development, climate change, biodiversity and net zero.

Mayor Rotheram will be accompanied on the trip by LCR Chief Executive Katherine Fairclough, Deputy Mayor Seve Gomez-Aspron and Stephen Young, Chief Executive at Halton Borough Council. They will be joined by Claire McColgan, Director of Culture Liverpool City Council and LCR Executive Director Kirsty McLean.

Dr Peter Tschentscher, First Mayor of the Free and Hanseatic City of Hamburg, said: “I look forward to welcoming Mayor Rotheram and his delegation to Hamburg. As traditional port cities and progressive metropolitan areas, Hamburg and Liverpool can exchange best practices and cooperate in future fields such as urban mobility and the hydrogen economy.”