The sea connects all major economic regions in the world. With the Port of Rotterdam as the number one port in Europe, West Holland is home to the largest maritime hub in Western Europe. Important innovation themes in our region include offshore wind, 3D-printing of maritime spare parts and 100% predictable maintenance. In the field of water and delta technology this unique delta region is renowned for climate adaption and the use of and protection against the water.

West Holland, the maritime hotspot in Western Europe

The Dutch maritime sector is a vibrant ecosystem of 12,000 companies creating jobs for approximately 185,000 people. It’s a strategic geographical region that combines a major sea port function with the presence of maritime world players in several sectors operating. It has a strong international focus on trade and technology, and is highly competitive and innovative, especially in dredging, salvage services and terminal operation.

More than two third of direct maritime employment is created within the four Dutch port areas, of which half is located in the so-called Rijn- en Maasmond area in West Holland. The regional maritime industry includes shipbuilding and repair, pipeline and offshore installation, material and equipment suppliers, transportation and bunkering services as well as engineering and consultancy companies.

In addition, Rotterdam is home to a unique cluster of maritime and offshore service suppliers, including insurance, finance and legal. Other important clusters in this unique delta region are Oil & Gas and Telecommunications: upstream Oil & Gas companies operating in exploration and production, several international engineering and consultancy firms, many national and international telecom operators’ European headquarters.

In the Maritime Delta program, organisations in the West Holland aera join forces in order to enhance innovation. Smart and clean ships, extracting at sea and an effective infrastructure are national innovation themes, which are being developed through i.e. sustainable, autonomous and zero emissions water transport and smart maintenance.

Crossovers with other sectors are emerging through solutions like 3D-printing and cyber security. The West Holland resources are also bundled in water and delta technology by the valorization programme Delta Technology & Water (VPdelta) in which the Delft University of Technology, educational and research institutes, (local) authorities and maritime businesses collaborate.

PortXL is the first World Port Accelerator. The program aims to accelerate innovative companies in ports worldwide by growing and disrupting the maritime, logistic, energy, and chemical/refinery markets. PortXL provides an intense mentorship-driven programme, focusing on port related industries and partners with leading companies (such as Van Oord, Port of Rotterdam, EY, ECE, Vopak, Uniper, Boskalis, Rabobank and Rotterdam Port Fund), organizations and individuals around the globe, from Singapore, Houston to Piraeus.