King and Queen to visit Schleswig-Holstein and Hamburg (2)

On Thursday 19 and Friday 20 March 2015 Their Majesties King Willem-Alexander and Queen Máxima will visit the German federal states of Schleswig-Holstein and Hamburg.

The King and Queen will be accompanied by Lilianne Ploumen, the Minister for Foreign Trade and Development Cooperation, who is leading a parallel two-day economic mission to the same region. The aim of the visit is to deepen trade and investment relations and to promote cooperation in a variety of sectors, particularly energy, life sciences and health. There will also be a focus on the creative industries, the maritime sector and organic farming.

The visit directly follows on from Their Majesties' state visit to Denmark on 17 and 18 March. As in that visit, energy will occupy an important place on the agenda, especially during a trilateral seminar with participants from the Netherlands, Denmark and Germany on Thursday 19 March.

19 March: Schleswig-Holstein and Hamburg

Medical technology (Lübeck)

On the morning of Thursday 29 March, Torsten Albig, the Premier of Schleswig-Holstein, will receive the King and Queen in the market square in the Hanseatic city of Lübeck. After speaking with Mr Albig in Lübeck's town hall, Their Majesties will be taken to the premises of Dräger Medical, a company producing high-grade medical equipment for use in hospitals. While there, the various parties will discuss the central theme of 'smart care', and the shared healthcare challenges faced by Germany and the Netherlands - such as demographic ageing, digitisation and rising care costs. There will also be opportunities to explore the added value Dutch and German partners can offer each other in relation to these challenges. After this, Ms Ploumen will deliver a speech to representatives of Dutch and German businesses, in the presence of the King and Queen.

Their Majesties will then proceed to one of the Dräger test laboratories, they will be shown a variety of medical systems and will meet with representatives from Dutch and German businesses in the life sciences and health sectors. Representatives of 25 Dutch businesses will take part in the meeting, including livestock veterinarian, Gijsbert van de Wijdeven, inventor of the Bioneedle. The soluble Bioneedle, which is a new, quicker and safer way to vaccinate both humans and animals, was proclaimed as one of the National Icons in 2014.

Organic farming, horticulture and food production (Trenthorst)

In the afternoon, the King and Queen will travel to the Thünen Institute for Organic Farming in Trenthorst. Their Majesties - accompanied by German Federal Minister of Food and Agriculture, Christian Schmidt - will see the institute's farm and learn about practical research into animal-friendly livestock husbandry, modern stable design and better feed for dairy cattle, with a focus on both human and animal health. The institute is also researching ways in which the organic sector can increase its competitiveness.

At a networking meeting, the Thünen Institute, Wageningen University and Research Centre, the Bionext research institute and the Louis Bolk Institute will sign a Letter of Intent aimed at furthering their cooperation in the sustainable agriculture, food and health sectors.

Trilateral networking event on offshore wind energy (Hamburg)

The King and Queen's visit to Hamburg will begin with a meeting with Mayor Olaf Scholz at Hamburg's town hall.

Their Majesties will then attend the closing session of a trilateral seminar on offshore wind energy at the Hamburg Chamber of Commerce. Representatives from Dutch, Danish and German research institutions, government agencies and the private sector will come together to discuss the joint contribution all three countries can make to the European energy transition and explore possible solutions to challenges like climate change and the global population boom. The Netherlands has a great deal of expertise in offshore technology, while Germany's and Denmark's knowledge is primarily onshore.

The King and Queen will be briefed on the major conclusions of the seminar. His Majesty will then deliver a speech, after which participating businesses will present various models and real-world examples to the royal couple.

20 March: Hamburg

Cross-border maritime cooperation

On the morning of Friday 20 March, the King and Queen will attend a meeting of Dutch and German businesses at Hamburg's Fischauktionshalle on the opportunities Liquefied Natural Gas (LNG) presents for maritime industry. LNG's status as an environmentally-friendly fuel means it can help reduce maritime vessel emissions and improve air quality in port cities. It also offers opportunities for operating and maintaining offshore wind farms. Businesses from across the entire sector will be present at the meeting, including shipyards, shipping companies and system suppliers.

The royal couple will then be given a tour of the LNG Hybrid Barge, where LNG is converted into electrical power. From mid-2015, the barge, christened the Hummel, will be used as a mobile electricity generator for cruise ships docked in Hamburg. Dutch and German partners are closely involved in the venture: Germany's Becker Marine Systems will be responsible for operating the barge, while the LNG will come from the Gate LNG terminal in Rotterdam and will be transported to Hamburg by Shell Germany.

Stage Entertainment: partnering in theatre technology

The King and Queen will then proceed to the Joop van den Ende Academy, which focuses on innovation and internationalisation in theatre technology. After being received by Joop van den Ende, owner of Stage Entertainment, Their Majesties will be shown the newest developments in the worlds of set, lighting and sound design, which bring together businesses, network organisations and governments from both Germany and the Netherlands. Dutch expertise in this domain is also in the field of education. This can be seen in the Amsterdam School for the Arts' Creative Engineering in the Performing Arts course, where artistry and craftsmanship come together. The royal couple will then watch a dance lesson and singing lesson at the academy.

Sustainable mobility in the city

Their Majesties will remain at the academy to attend an interactive workshop on 'intelligent mobility in the city'. Barbera Wolfensberger, the standard bearer for the Netherlands' creative industries sector, will meet with the King and Queen. Dutch and German policymakers, institutions, businesses and universities will engage with one another and brainstorm new forms of water- and land-based public transportation. The city of Hamburg will present 'Projekt Hamburg 2030', a plan for the future centring primarily on sustainable transport.

To mark the end of the visit, Mayor Scholz will host an official luncheon, or Senatsfrühstück, for the King and Queen at the Hamburg town hall.