Through technological developments, process optimisation and knowledge transfer, HHLA has been able to reconcile its entrepreneurial success with its responsibility towards the climate and society for many years now.


In implementing their sustainability strategy with a “Balanced Logistics” theme, HHLA is highlighting its commitment to bringing together environmental, social and economic interests.

Each is a prerequisite for the other, since the company only has the means and opportunity to invest in its employees and meet its obligations to society and the environment if it makes good returns.

HHLA sees innovation and technical excellence as crucial elements in developing sustainable solutions, being environmentally responsible and operating successfully in line with their self-image as the “gateway to the future”. Those who invest in innovative, climate-friendly technologies at an early stage achieve sustainable results faster, which is to the benefit of shareholders, customers, staff members and society.

Open dialogue with our stakeholders is essential for reconciling different interests and developing a mutual understanding. A sustainable future for logistics requires constructive contributions from all sides. Sustainable business practices must go beyond the optimisation of our own processes and technology. Forming a network with other players in the logistics field offers further potential. HHLA wants to follow this path in a purposeful, solution-oriented and harmonious way. In short, Balanced Logistics.

Our sustainability strategy

Today, HHLA connects port terminals to climate-friendly international transport chains through intermodal hinterland networks, thereby showing that sustainable business practices are firmly embedded in the company’s business model. The sustainability strategy is focused on nine areas of action. In addition to climate protection and the design of climate-friendly logistics chains, it focuses on area optimisation. HHLA intends to cut its total CO2 emissions in half by 2030, and to operate climate-neutral by 2040.

Climate-friendly logistics chains: we design climate and environment-friendly logistics chains

Area optimisation: we use the port and logistics areas as efficiently as possible

Climate and resource protection: we reduce our environmental impact and protect natural resources

Climate protection and energy efficiency: we reduce our CO2 emissions through energy efficiency and innovation

Health and occupational safety: we are committed to safe and fair work conditions and promote health-conscious conduct

Working world: we invest in vocational education and training with tailored staff development programmes

Social responsibility: we engage in informative dialogue with our society to discuss topics related to port logistics

Added value and innovation: we make a sustainable contribution to added value and thus raise prosperity at all locations

Business partners: we offer customised solutions and work responsibly with our suppliers


Successfully managing sustainability requires a company culture that is geared towards sustainability and embedded in the Group’s organisation.

Topics relevant to sustainability are the responsibility of the Chairwoman of the Executive Board. She receives direct support from the sustainability team across the Group. In all subsidiaries, there are people responsible for the three dimensions of sustainability: the environment, the economy and social involvement.

A Sustainability Council advises on topics related to the sustainability strategy. It comprises managers from within the Group as well as external expert Prof. Schaltegger from the Leuphana University in Lüneburg. This body provides a forum for discussing and approving sustainability issues and measures across the Group, as well as for regularly reviewing and updating the existing stakeholder structure.

HHLA engages in regular dialogue with its stakeholders, including customers (e.g. shipping companies), customers’ customers (e.g. forwarders), employees, suppliers, potential and existing shareholders and investors, associations and institutions, research institutes, political decision makers, NGOs, local residents close to the terminals and interested members of the public. The Annual Report is an established medium that supplements this regular dialogue and takes the stakeholder groups’ interests into account.