The South Elbe Region comprises the administrative districts of Stade, Harburg and Lüneburg as well as the Harburg borough of the Free and Hanseatic City of Hamburg. Together with the administrative districts of Lüchow-Dannenberg, Uelzen, Heidekreis, Rotenburg (Wümme) and Cuxhaven, they form part of the economic area of the Southern Metropolitan Region of Hamburg.A key feature of this region is the Elbe River, the third-longest river in Germany as well as a significant factor for the economies of the nearby towns, administrative districts and municipalities. The clustering of residents in the region is just as varied as its natural spaces, and the region features both rural and urban residential areas. The largest city in the region is Hamburg, whose over 1.8 million residents make it Germany’s second-largest city. The Hanseatic cities of Lüneburg, Buxtehude and Stade each boast a high quality of life, and the communities around them offer a peaceful living environment close to the city centre.
Among the factors that influence the South Elbe Region as a place to live and work are its strong economic resources, its pioneering innovations and its modern training and educational institutions.The food, logistics and aerospace industries are of great importance to the region’s economic success. These key sectors have a significant influence on the local economy.