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NRW: Investment location No. 1 in Germany

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About 22,000 international companies are based in NRW. They manage their German and European business activities from here. For example, Amazon, 3M, BP, Ericsson, Ford, Huawei, QVC, UPS, Toyota and Vodafone have discovered NRW as an investment location. NRW is Germany's number one destination for foreign direct investment. This is primarily due to the optimal conditions that international companies find here for their growth. 

International companies settle in NRW

NRW is considered Germany's No. 1 state for investment projects by international companies: At 194.8 billion euros, the state recorded the highest share (22.9 percent) of all 16 German states in foreign direct investment (FDI) at the end of 2021. As a result, international companies have also established themselves as major employers: Some 1.0 million people in NRW work for a foreign company.

NRW: attractive for foreign direct investment

NRW: attractive for foreign direct investment

Despite global challenges, NRW continues to have an excellent reputation as an investment location among international companies. In 2022, 390 enterprises settled in the state or expanded their branches. Projects from European countries in particular have been driving demand with a share of more than 60 percent. The largest investor countries in 2022 included Türkiye, Greater China, the USA and the Netherlands.

Nevertheless, the medium-term consequences of the Corona pandemic and the tense geopolitical situation arising from the Russian war of aggression on Ukraine led to a noticeable overall restraint in investment activities compared with the previous year. At around 8,000, the number of new jobs forecast was lower than in 2021 but equaled the level of previous years.

Investments in B2B services and IT projects recorded particularly strong growth in 2022. Moreover, settlements in sectors such as mobility, hydrogen or medical technology underlined the potential of NRW as an innovation location to advance new technologies.

Sites for settlements and investments

In NRW, potential investors can find sites in central locations – and at good prices. For example, around a quarter of all German logistics centers are located in NRW. In addition to the excellent infrastructure, an important criterion for the choice of location here is sufficient space for growth and possible expansion. 

The free commercial site portal GERMAN.SITE

finds the right site for foreign investment projects in NRW – whether it is further details on the infrastructure, the geographical location or the local concentration of the industry concerned, potential investors are well informed via the portal

Multicultural NRW with international business communities

01 NRW is a cosmopolitan location

NRW is a cosmopolitan location

Situated in the heart of Europe, NRW is a central and cosmopolitan location: International companies and their employees value not only these geographical key data, but also the quality of life, tolerance and open-mindedness to be found here.

02 Culture of welcome makes people feel at home

Culture of welcome makes people feel at home

This welcoming culture ensures that both large and smaller communities from different countries quickly feel at home here, not only in terms of business but also culturally. The strong networking of communities within NRW plays an important role in the success of investment projects as it allows access to a broad state network and first-hand information.

03 Japan location Düsseldorf

Japan location Düsseldorf

In Düsseldorf, for example, Europe's third-largest Japanese community has been growing for over 150 years – today, around 14,300 Japanese live in NRW. With Japanese banks, lawyers, kindergartens and schools, supermarkets and cultural centers, the state offers a diverse Japanese infrastructure that is constantly evolving. Key partners include the Japanese Consulate General, the Japanese Chamber of Commerce and Industry in Düsseldorf (JIHK), JETRO and the Japanese Club.

04 Strong ties between USA and NRW

Strong ties between USA and NRW

The United States and NRW also have a long shared history – today, some 14,200 U.S. citizens live in the Rhine-Ruhr region. The U.S. Consulate General is based in Düsseldorf, as are the U.S. Commercial Service and the International Trade Administration of the U.S. Department of Commerce. The American Chamber of Commerce in Germany offers one of the best business networks in Germany in NRW.

05 More than 30,000 Chinese in NRW

More than 30,000 Chinese in NRW

Around 36,000 Chinese also live in NRW. The Chinese service sector is broadly based with insurance companies, real estate agents, lawyers, schools, supermarkets, restaurants and cultural centers. With the Industrial and Commercial Bank of China (ICBC) and the Bank of China, there are two large financial institutions with branches in Düsseldorf.

International and foreign schools as a location factor

Employees of international companies and their families not only find the best conditions for a second home in NRW, but their children also have the opportunity to pursue an internationally oriented education here. In total, there are over 6,200 school facilities, including seven international and eleven foreign schools – an important location bonus for foreign company employees.

International schools are privately run educational institutions. Here, students can obtain internationally recognized degrees that give them access to the numerous universities and courses of study. Foreign schools, on the other hand, offer a qualification in accordance with the school laws applicable in the respective country of origin and prepare students, for example, for access to higher education in that country.

Photo credits

© Düsseldorf Tourismus GmbH
© Petinov Sergey Mihilovich, Shutterstock
© 75tiks, Shutterstock
© DavideAngelini, Shutterstock
© Matej Kastelic, Shutterstock
© Monkey Business Images, Shutterstock
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