Before the European and district assembly elections in the coming year and the state elections in early 2025, the Hamburg CDU has redefined its economic policy course. A key proposal from the state board entitled "New power for Hamburg's economy" was unanimously passed by around 160 delegates at a state party conference on Monday evening in the Billstedt Palace of Culture. On 17 pages, an 11-point plan is used to set out how the Christian Democrats intend to secure Hamburg's "prosperity of tomorrow".
At the opening of the party conference, the state chairman and faction leader Dennis Thering got his party friends in the mood for the upcoming district assembly and citizenship elections with a combative speech. 14 years of SPD government brought the city to a standstill in many areas, he said. "This senate is done. There is a senate alternative to the quarreling red-green bunch (...) - that is the CDU Hamburg."
In the district assembly elections next year, the CDU will "receive a strong result in the seven districts - beyond Mitte," said Thering. And the goal for 2025 is also clear: "We want to win the 2025 state election."
A central theme of his speech was internal security, which had deteriorated significantly in Hamburg. There is a clear "firewall" to the AfD - "an openly racist and partly anti-Semitic party", Thering said. "We are the right alternative when it comes to security." The CDU stands for more police presence, more weapon ban zones and more video surveillance.
In terms of economic policy, Thering accused the red-green Senate of gambling away the future of the port. "The port of Hamburg is falling further and further behind." Handling dropped by 17 percent in the first quarter, and the port of Hamburg is now the slowest in the world. "If that's not homemade, if it's not a total failure of the Hamburg Senate, then I don't know what is," he said.
The port development plan recently presented by the Senate is not very ambitious and is content with the lead of the competition in Rotterdam and Antwerp. "We want to compete with Rotterdam and Antwerp because we want to compete with the best," said Thering.
According to its 11-point plan, the CDU is also focusing on strengthening the metropolitan region, which should lead to a reversal of the north-south divide in Germany. "As a city-state, we are too small in many respects," said the parliamentary group's economic expert, Götz Wiese, who played a key role in drafting the paper. Therefore, the metropolitan region must be strengthened. "We want to do that as Britain's most easterly city, which we have been for centuries. And we want to do that as Scandinavia's most southerly city," said Wiese.
Hamburg is also dependent on functioning commercial traffic in and around the city, which must be promoted without ideological barriers. "The Köhlbrand crossing must be built in the near future," warned Wiese. In addition, the CDU relies on digitization and de-bureaucratization. "When it's our turn again, we want to build a digital business town hall." Business start-ups should be possible within a day.
Further investments must also be made in education and science in order to maintain and strengthen Hamburg's economic power, said the education policy spokeswoman for the parliamentary group, Anke Frieling.