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City of Cologne, Office of Economic Development

Booth number: N301-E5

About us

The Office of Economic Development of the City of Cologne offers support on all relevant issues dealing with company settlement. Due to the long-standing friendship and cooperation with the sister city of Beijing, offering support to Chinese investors belongs to our main priorities. The China-Desk of the Office of Economic Development, a one-stop agency integrated in a top China network, offers a custom-tailored and free-of-charge service, ranging from providing answers to questions related to the business locations through to giving support for the rapid procurement of official approvals like a residence and a work permit. Currently, 200 Chinese businesses based in Cologne do benefit from this special counselling service – available both in Chinese and English.

Products and services

China is a focal point of the foreign activities of the Office of Economic Development. With the aim of improving and strengthening Cologne’s position as a bridgehead for Chinese business, the China Initiative was launched in 2005. The China-Desk is at your disposal as a central contact partner, as a “one-stop-agency” for all your questions about company settlement. Here you will receive a service tailored to your needs which includes, for example, the following modules:

  • Location advice
  • Real estate brokering
  • Help with obtaining official approvals (e g building permit, work and residence permit)
  • Support with the recruitment of employees
  • Support with integration

In principle, the City of Cologne offers you a comprehensive, fast and flexible service approval procedures for work and residence permits only take four weeks at the most on presentation of all documents in Cologne.


City of Cologne, Office of Economic Development
Willy-Brandt-Platz 2
50678 Köln

Phone: +49 221 22125765
Fax: +49 221 22126686

Heike Welter
Head of China-Initiative
Phone: +49 221 221 23716

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