Wilhelmshaven is a coastal town in Lower Saxony, Germany. It is situated on the western side of the Jade Bight, a bay of the North Sea. Wilhelmshaven is the centre of the “JadeBay” business region (which has around 330,000 inhabitants).
The adjacent Lower Saxony Wadden Sea National Park (part of the Wattenmeer UNESCO World Natural Heritage Site) provides the basis for the major tourism industry in the region.
Wilhelmshaven is Germany’s only deep-water port, and its largest naval base. The benefits of the deep shipping channel were already recognized at the end of the 1950s with the construction of the first oil tanker jetty. Wilhelmshaven has been the most important German import terminal for crude oil ever since. Pipelines from here supply refineries in the Rhine-Ruhr region and Hamburg. Other major business operations followed, and constructed jetties for crude oil and oil products, coal, and chemical products.
One of the main industrial sectors in Wilhelmshaven is the port industry with its wharfs, sea port service companies, service providers and repair businesses, transhipment and handling businesses, and agencies, etc. The “JadeWeserPort” – Container Terminal Wilhelmshaven (CTW) and the development of the neighbouring Freight Village provide prospects for employment in areas such as logistics and distribution.
Another element of the “Wilhelmshaven energy hub” programme is the chemical industry (refinery, PVC, and chlorine gas production), as well as power generation (two coal-fired power stations, wind power).
The German military (German Navy, navy arsenal, logistics centre) together with the public sector, are the main pillars of the local employment market.