1. GA-English

City continues to grow: Bonn has more jobs and more inhabitants

City continues to grow : Bonn has more jobs and more inhabitants

The city of Bonn remains on a growth course - not only economically speaking. The population has risen to 327,258. Jobs have also increased, especially in the “Information and Communication” sector.

More inhabitants, more jobs, fewer unemployed: Bonn remains on the upswing economically. "We are one of the country's most dynamic growth regions," said Mayor Ashok Sridharan on Wednesday when he presented the economic report for 2018 together with Victoria Appelbe, the head of the city's economic development department. Sridharan particularly emphasized the importance of knowledge-oriented industries of the future: They currently account for 38.4 percent of all jobs, with an above-average number of people employed in that sector.

According to the report, the number of jobs subject to social insurance contributions rose to 176,689 from 2017 to 2018 (including part-time work), increasing by 3,150. This was an increase of 1.8 percent, which was below the NRW average of 2.3 percent. However, a look back shows how strongly the labor market in Bonn has grown: Since 2005, the city has recorded an increase of 35,700 jobs, 13,000 of them in the past four years alone.

The growth drivers in 2018 were the "Information and Communication" sector with 1,901 new jobs ( up 12 per cent) and the hospitality industry with 523 jobs ( up 8.3 per cent). In public administration, 390 jobs (2.0 percent) were created. The city recorded the strongest decline in the area of "Transport and Warehousing", where 491 jobs were lost - a decrease of 16.6 percent.

92 percent of all employees work in the service sector, which also includes the Dax groups Post and Telekom. The demand for office space is correspondingly high: According to the economic report, the take-up of office space in 2018 was a record 137,500 square meters. The new outlined plan for the Bundesviertel (federal district), which Sridharan intends to present next week at the Expo real estate trade fair in Munich, provides for further office high-rises as well as apartments and local utilities. "We are looking forward to the response from investors," said the mayor.

The city wants to counter the lack of commercial space with stronger cooperation beyond the city limits. An area in Rheinbach is being considered but it must be approved by the state of NRW.

For the future of the city, Sridharan relies on the Bonn contract, an agreement with the German government to support the former capital city by maintaining a federal presence here. As reported, a mission statement proposes various measures to strengthen Bonn as a location for international cooperation, sustainability, science and cyber security. The aim is to conclude the agreement in spring 2020. A meeting in Berlin has not yet been scheduled - apparently because the German government is still thinking about "answers to the mission statement", as the mayor reported.

Bonn continues to grow. In December, the city had 327,258 inhabitants, which is 1,768 more than in the previous year. By 2040, a further increase of 39,500 people is forecast.

(Orig. text: Andreas Baumann; Translation: ck)