Region of Styria
Styria – A Hotbed for Industry & Export
Styria, which is also known as the “Green Heart of Austria”, covers an area of 16,400 sq km and is the second largest federal state of the country. The region, located in the southeast of Austria, has a population of 1.2 million.
Styria offers a wide variety of landscapes, making it one of the most diverse states of Austria: Ranging from towering mountains with 788 summits over 2,000 metres and lush forests in the north, to beautiful vineyards in the south, river valleys throughout the region, and more than 800 km of ski slopes, the region is rich in natural beauty and has a lot to offer.
Furthermore, the region is an international crossroads of nations and cultures. Internationally renowned events from the Styrian music festival “styriarte” to the art festival “Steirischer Herbst” each year inspire both nationals as well as international guests. Also, the Alpine Ski World Cup take place as regularly in Styria as Formula 1 races.
The capital of Styria is the city of Graz, which is the second largest city of the country and home to approximately 330,000 people. In total, four universities and two universities of applied science are located in the city.
Graz combines modern architecture such as the Murinsel, an artificial island made of glass and steel, or the contemporary art museum Kunsthaus, with the old town buildings of Renaissance and Baroque architecture. With the old town in the city centre and the castle of Eggenberg, Graz offers two UNESCO World Heritage sites. In fact, in 2003, Graz was declared as European Capital of Culture and in March 2011, it was designated UNESCO City of Design.
Styria offers a vibrant economic environment with a mix of large multinational companies as well as innovative SMEs. In total, approximately 77,000 companies contribute to this business location characterised by great innovation and technological progress, almost 7,350 of which export their products and services around the globe.
Styria is a hotbed for industry and export
With nine universities and universities of applied sciences, Styria is a national hub of education and knowledge. It is home to excellent research institutions and around half of all Austrian research centres are located here. Furthermore, an R&D quota of 4.91% places Styria among the top three of the most innovative regions in Europe.
In addition, Styria follows a clear economic strategy and guiding principle “Growth Through Innovation”, with a focus on the economic strengths of the region. These are the fields of mobility (automotive, rail and aviation), health tech (med tech, bio tech, food tech), eco tech (energy and environmental technologies, circular economy, wood, pulp & paper), creative industries and microelectronics.
Becoming stronger together
The core competencies in these areas are pooled together in our cluster networks, which are actively promoting innovation and cooperation: the mobility cluster ACstyria, Human.technology Styria or the Green Tech Cluster, to name just a few. Each of them comprises more than 100 enterprises and enables cooperation of its members with other companies, academia and research facilities to create the greatest benefit for businesses and further push the boundaries of science and industry.
In addition to these fields of strength, the export of goods and services and the cooperation with international companies and partners is a key driver of the Styrian economy. The regional GDP of 49 billion Euro and an export volume of 26 billion Euro in 2019, show the great importance of export in the Styrian economy. In other words, every other job in Styria is directly connected to the international success of our innovative companies. With respect to export figures, Styria has developed into the most dynamic federal state in Austria. Import figures reached 19.54 billion Euro in 2019. Among others, the most important products that are purchased from abroad are vehicles, electrical machinery, iron and steel.
In order to support Styrian companies in exporting goods and services, entering new markets and to strengthen international business relations of our region, the ICS Internationalisation Centre Styria was established in 2005. The ICS is a joint initiative of the Styrian Economic Chamber, the Federal State of Styria and the Styrian body of the Styrian Association of Industrialists.