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State of Saxony-Anhalt
State of Sassen-Anholt ( Low German )
Flag of Saxony-Anhalt
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Coat of arms of Saxony-Anhalt
State coat of arms
Basic data
Language : German , in the northern part also Low German
State capital : Magdeburg
Form of government : parliamentary republic , partially sovereign member state of a federal state
Area : 20,451.58 km²
Foundation : July 21, 1947 (dissolved in 1952)
October 3, 1990 (Federal Republic of Germany)
ISO 3166-2 : DE-ST
Population : 2,194,782 (December 31, 2019)
Population density : 107 inhabitants per km²
Unemployment rate : 7.5% (May 2021)
GDP (nominal): EUR 60.10 billion  ( 13th ) (2017)
Debt : EUR 21.863 billion (June 30, 2020)
Head of Government : Prime Minister
Reiner Haseloff ( CDU )
President of the State Parliament : President of the State Parliament
Gabriele Brakebusch ( CDU )
Ruling parties: CDU , SPD and Greens
Allocation of seats in the 7th state parliament :
Distribution of seats in the state parliament : Of the 87 seats, there are:
  • CDU 30
  • AfD 21
  • Left 16
  • SPD 11
  • Green 5
  • non-attached 4
  • Last choice: June 6, 2021
    Next choice : probably 2026
    Votes in the Federal Council : 4th
    Altmarkkreis Salzwedel Landkreis Stendal Landkreis Börde Magdeburg Landkreis Jerichower Land Landkreis Harz Salzlandkreis Landkreis Anhalt-Bitterfeld Dessau-Roßlau Landkreis Wittenberg Saalekreis Halle (Saale) Burgenlandkreis Landkreis Mansfeld-Südharz Berlin Sachsen Thüringen Niedersachsen BrandenburgSaxony-Anhalt, administrative divisions - de - colored.svg
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    Administrative structure of Saxony-Anhalt:
    11 districts ; 218 municipalities (including 104 cities , including 3 independent cities )

    The state of Saxony-Anhalt [ˌzaksn̩ˈʔanhalt] ( Low German Sassen-Anholt , state code ST , common abbreviation LSA ) is a parliamentary republic and, as a state, a partially sovereign member state of the Federal Republic of Germany . The tract of land has about 2.19 million inhabitants. The two largest cities in the state are the state capital Magdeburg and Halle (Saale) , another regional center is Dessau-Roßlau .

    The state was created on July 21, 1947 through the unification of the Free State of Anhalt with the Prussian provinces of Magdeburg and Halle-Merseburg , which the Free State of Prussia had created on April 1, 1944 by dividing its province of Saxony . The state of Saxony-Anhalt was divided into districts with the GDR administrative reform and has existed in its current form since German reunification on October 3, 1990. It is divided into eleven districts and three independent cities . The neighboring states are Lower Saxony , Brandenburg , Saxony and Thuringia , and from 1990 to 1992 Mecklenburg-Western Pomerania as well .

    Saxony-Anhalt is centrally located in Germany and Central Europe . It is crossed by one of the most important west-east connections in Europe ( A2 ) and one of the most important north-south connections on the continent ( A9 , once Via Imperii ). The southern part of Saxony-Anhalt belongs to the metropolitan region of Central Germany . The state borders on the metropolitan regions of Hamburg , Berlin-Brandenburg and those around Hanover and due to its large north-south extent (around 210 km), the southernmost part is only around 60 kilometers (as the crow flies) from the border with Bavaria .

    Saxony-Anhalt has five UNESCO World Heritage Sites - the Bauhaus , the Dessau-Wörlitz Garden Realm , the Luther memorials in Eisleben and Wittenberg , the old town of Quedlinburg and the Naumburg Cathedral . The country has a diverse landscape of castles, palaces and churches, as well as other valuable cultural monuments . With several universities and research institutions, Halle and Magdeburg are scientific centers.


    In the north, Saxony-Anhalt is characterized by flat land. In the sparsely populated Altmark there are old Hanseatic cities such as Salzwedel , Gardelegen , Stendal and Tangermünde . The transition from the Altmark to the Elbe-Börde-Heide region with the fertile, poorly forested Magdeburg Börde is formed by the Colbitz-Letzlinger Heide and the Drömling . In the Magdeburg Börde are the cities of Haldensleben , Oschersleben (Bode) , Wanzleben-Börde , Schönebeck (Elbe) , Aschersleben and Magdeburg, from which the region derives its name.

    In the southwest lies the Harz with the cross-border Harz National Park , the Harz foreland and the Mansfelder Land as well as the cities of Halberstadt , Quedlinburg , Wernigerode , Thale , Lutherstadt Eisleben and Sangerhausen .

    On the border with Saxony is the Halle (Saale) / Merseburg / Bitterfeld-Wolfen (also known as the “ chemical triangle ”) conurbation , which extends into Leipzig in Saxony. The chemical industry with its economic focus in Leuna has been based here since the end of the 19th and beginning of the 20th century .

    At the hall , the White Elster and the Unstrut in the south of the country where the wine region Saale-Unstrut is, are Zeitz , Naumburg (Saale) , Weissenfels and Freyburg (Unstrut) . Finally, Saxony-Anhalt also includes the Anhalt-Wittenberg region in the east with the third largest city in the state of Dessau-Roßlau , which emerged from the old Anhalt royal seat of Dessau , Lutherstadt Wittenberg and part of Fläming .

    Geography of the State of Saxony-Anhalt



    Low mountain ranges and mountains

    View of the Brocken in the Harz Mountains. Wernigerode Castle on the right

    The largest low mountain range in Saxony-Anhalt is the Harz, in which the highest elevation of Saxony-Anhalt and all of Northern Germany is located. This is 1141.1  m above sea level. NN the Brocken .


    Overall, the waters in Saxony-Anhalt are in poor condition. The high quantities of liquid manure from factory farms make to create the waters. Only in Saxony is things worse for the waters.


    The Elbe (here Arneburg ) is the most important river in Saxony-Anhalt

    The following rivers and / or streams flow through Saxony-Anhalt in whole or in part. Known rivers (with the respective total length) are:


    Großer Goitzschesee: A renatured open-cast brown coal mine near Bitterfeld

    Saxony-Anhalt originally only had a few lakes . Where salts occur in the subsurface, representatives such as the Arendsee in the Altmark and the Mansfeld lakes, Süßer and Salziger See , formed due to subsidence . The majority of the larger lakes in Saxony-Anhalt, on the other hand, are man-made. Most of them were created through the renaturation of old open-cast mine holes from lignite mining . The following list gives an overview of the largest lakes in Saxony-Anhalt:


    Muldestausee , Rappbode dam , Kelbra dam , Wippertalsperre


    For the history of the area before 1944 see, among others, Altmark , Erzstift Magdeburg , Hochstift Halberstadt , Stift Quedlinburg , Province of Saxony and Anhalt , main article see under History of Saxony-Anhalt

    The Prussian province of Saxony and the Duchy of Anhalt (later the Free State of Anhalt ) within their borders until 1945

    In July 1944, the former Prussian province of Saxony , consisting of the administrative districts of Magdeburg , Merseburg and Erfurt , was divided up. The provinces of Magdeburg and Halle-Merseburg emerged . The administrative district of Erfurt was subordinated to the Reich governor of Thuringia. After the German surrender in 1945, the Soviet military administration in Germany (SMAD) took over the two provinces of Magdeburg and Halle-Merseburg, as well as the Free State of Anhalt (around Dessau), the former Brunswick exclave of Calvörde and the eastern part of the district of Blankenburg in the Harz Mountains, also before Belonging to the state of Braunschweig , as well as the Thuringian enclave Allstedt united to the new province of Saxony and the name changed to the province of Saxony-Anhalt in October 1946 . In the course of the dissolution of Prussia, the province of Saxony-Anhalt announced its own state constitution on January 10, 1947 . On July 21, 1947, the name was changed to the State of Saxony-Anhalt . The state capital became Halle . The country covered 24,576 km².

    In July 1952, as part of the administrative reform in the GDR, the state of Saxony-Anhalt was de facto dissolved (de jure it continued to exist for a few years) and divided into the two districts of Halle and Magdeburg . In doing so, border adjustments were made in which individual cities and municipalities were incorporated or outsourced from the neighboring districts, which shifted the district boundaries compared to the former state borders.

    The borders of the GDR state of Saxony-Anhalt from 1947 to 1952 are shown in red, the external borders of the GDR districts of Halle and Magdeburg in purple and the current borders of Saxony-Anhalt in black. The Prussian Province of Saxony is marked in yellow, the Anhalt region in green, former Brunswick areas in brown

    On October 3, 1990, the state of Saxony-Anhalt was re-established by the Land Introduction Act . Since then, Saxony-Anhalt has again consisted of the former districts of Halle (excluding the district of Artern ) and Magdeburg as well as the district of Jessen , which was part of the state of Saxony-Anhalt before 1952. The state capital became Magdeburg. Saxony-Anhalt's partner country during the establishment of the new structures was Lower Saxony. The beginning of the 1990s was marked by frequent changes of state governments and political affairs. As a result, the initially ruling CDU lost the second state elections after reunification and the PDS tolerated a state government of the SPD and Alliance 90 / Greens ( Magdeburg model ). Prime Minister Reinhard Höppner ruled the country for two legislative periods in a time of great economic and labor market restructuring, after the Greens left a single SPD government tolerated by the PDS. Saxony-Anhalt had the highest unemployment rate of all federal states. In the third electoral term since reunification, the right-wing extremist DVU succeeded in entering the state parliament. However, this faction soon broke up due to internal disputes and was not re-elected to the state parliament in 2002. The ongoing economic crisis led to another change of government in the 2002 elections. Since then, Saxony-Anhalt has been ruled initially by a CDU / FDP government, then by a CDU / SPD government under Wolfgang Böhmer . After the state elections in 2011, he was replaced by Reiner Haseloff for reasons of age , who in turn has led a so-called Kenya coalition since 2016 .

    Cultural history

    The area of ​​today's state of Saxony-Anhalt was one of the cultural focal points in the German-speaking area in the early Middle Ages . Today's state capital Magdeburg was at that time one of the political centers in the Holy Roman Empire of the German Nation . The well-preserved architectural monuments typical of the country from the Romanesque and Gothic periods ( see also: Romanesque Road ), such as the cathedrals of Magdeburg and Halberstadt , the old town of Quedlinburg and many castles, testify to the earlier importance of the entire region and churches. According to the state marketing company, Saxony-Anhalt is the state with the highest density of UNESCO world cultural heritages in Germany. These include the Bauhaus Dessau in Dessau-Roßlau, the Luther memorials in Wittenberg and Eisleben, the old town of Quedlinburg , the Dessau-Wörlitz Garden Realm with the Wörlitz Park and the Naumburg Cathedral . Characteristic for the local towns and cities are not only winding, half-timbered old towns and densely built-up villages, also often with half-timbered architecture and attractive old village churches, but also buildings from the time of the Prussian province of Saxony , which was considered the richest province in the state at the time.


    Ethnic groups

    In the 7th century AD, the population of Saxony-Anhalt was made up of Lower Saxony ( Ostfalen ) and Thuringians . In addition, there were the Elbe Slavs who were Christianized in the course of the German settlement in the east . Furthermore, descendants of the Flemings and Huguenots who immigrated in the past centuries as well as other persecuted ethnic groups who found refuge with the early modern sovereigns in today's Saxony-Anhalt also live in Saxony-Anhalt . After the Second World War, displaced persons and refugees from the former German eastern regions and Czechoslovakia were settled . From 1990 Russian-German repatriates moved to Saxony-Anhalt. The proportion of foreign immigrants is comparatively small; the proportion of foreigners was 4.5% at the end of March 2017. The largest group here is the Vietnamese , followed by Russians and Ukrainians .

    The historically correct name for the inhabitants of the state, supported by the state authorities , is Sachsen-Anhalter , the corresponding adjective Saxony-Anhalt . In addition, the terms Sachsen-Anhaltiner and the expression Saxon-Anhaltinian recorded in the Duden are incorrectly used in colloquial language , whereby 'Anhaltinian' means a reference to the noble family of the Anhalt line of the Ascanians .


    Saxony-Anhalt belongs to both the Low German and Central German language areas. A colored High German is spoken in the state today, which has a large number of specific expressions from Mark-Brandenburg , but is also characterized by Thuringian-Upper Saxon , especially in the southern parts of the country . In the northern part, in the Altmark and in the Börde , one still encounters the Low German language with older speakers . In the Mansfelder Land you can find the Mansfäller dialect , a dialect that strangers to the area understand only with great difficulty.


    About 80 percent of the citizens are non-denominational. In Saxony-Anhalt at the end of 2019, 328,979 people and thus 15.0% of the population belonged to one of the two major Christian denominations. 11.7% of the population were members of the Protestant regional churches and 3.3% of the Saxon Anhalter were Roman Catholic . In the previous year, 15.3% of the population belonged to one of the two major Christian denominations. 11.9% of the population were members of the Protestant regional churches, of which the Evangelical Church in Central Germany and the Evangelical Regional Church of Anhalt have the most members; 3.3% of the Saxons-Anhalter were Roman Catholic and mainly assigned to the diocese of Magdeburg and, to a small extent, to the archbishopric of Berlin (city of Havelberg ).

    As early as the first half of the 20th century, the Saxony-Anhalt region was one of the areas with a comparatively high proportion of people without religious affiliation. The low number of church members in Saxony-Anhalt is among other things. also due to the fact that a dissolution of church ties was promoted by the GDR .

    Even after the peaceful revolution in 1989, the trend continued to decline for the Protestant and Catholic regional churches. The number of Protestant and Catholic Christians in Saxony-Anhalt is falling continuously. On average, their number decreased by 0.4 percentage points per year between 2001 and 2018. Saxony-Anhalt currently has the lowest rate of church-bound residents in Germany. 80,000 inhabitants belong to other denominations, of which around 11,000 belong to the New Apostolic Church and 45,000 other religions ( Judaism , Jehovah's Witnesses , Islam ). Compared to many other German countries, the proportion of Muslim citizens is very low.

    Saxony-Anhalt pays around 35 million euros a year in state payments to the Protestant and Roman Catholic Churches. Although Saxony-Anhalt has the lowest proportion of members of these churches in a comparison of the federal states, the highest amount of state benefits per inhabitant is paid there. Even if the state benefits are allocated to the church members, Saxony-Anhalt leads the country comparison with 108 euros per church member per year.


    In 2005, 1,949 resident doctors carried out 1,270,763 vaccinations in Saxony-Anhalt. In addition, there is a small proportion of vaccinations by the health authorities. 824,064 people were vaccinated against influenza (“real flu”), and the proportion of the population vaccinated against influenza is estimated at 33 percent.

    Since 2008, Saxony-Anhalt has been struggling with a shortage of doctors in both outpatient and inpatient areas, which is being countered by hiring doctors from Eastern Europe and Austria. In 2000 there were 1,654 general practitioners, in 2007 there were 1,437. The number of working doctors rose - almost exclusively as a result of the increase in the number of foreign working doctors - from 9,200 (2016) to 9,499 (2019), with the average age of both practicing doctors and patients continuing to rise more doctors only work part-time , which is why the increasing number of doctors - from the perspective of the Medical Association - is by far not sufficient to compensate for the shortage of doctors. Although the density of doctors in Saxony-Anhalt (one doctor per 236 inhabitants) is higher than in Brandenburg (249 inhabitants per doctor) and Lower Saxony (242 inhabitants per doctor), many Brandenburgers use the offers in Berlin and many Lower Saxony visit practices in Hamburg and Bremen , in addition, the average age of employed doctors and patients in Saxony-Anhalt - and thus the "disease burden" per inhabitant - is higher. The chairs for general medicine established at the universities in Halle and Magdeburg since 2010, the rural doctor quota implemented for the first time in 2020 and better organization of specialist training are measures that are intended to counteract an impending further exacerbation of the medical shortage - especially with regard to general practitioners in rural areas.

    The average life expectancy in the period 2015/17 was 76.2 years for men and 82.5 years for women. The men are ranked 16th among the German federal states, while women are ranked 14th. Both values ​​are thus below the national average, but significantly - by almost seven or almost six years - above the values ​​from 1990. In 2013/15 Magdeburg (total population: 80.07 years), Dessau-Roßlau (79.88) and the Saalekreis (79.78) is the highest, and the Altmarkkreis Salzwedel (78.79), Stendal (78.77) and the Salzlandkreis (78.41), the lowest life expectancy .

    Population development

    Development of the population of Saxony-Anhalt since 1990
    year population balance
    1990 2,873,957
    1995 2,738,928 −135.029
    2000 2,615,375 −123.553
    2005 2,469,716 −145,659
    2010 2,335,006 −134.710
    2015 2,245,470 −89,536
    2019 2,194,782 −50,688
    Population pyramid for Saxony-Anhalt 2011 (data source: 2011 census)

    On December 31, 2019, Saxony-Anhalt had a total of just under 2.2 million inhabitants. The numerical decline in population in Saxony-Anhalt is a trend that has remained almost unbroken since reunification and can be traced back to roughly the same extent to the low number of newborns and the emigration of Saxony-Anhalters to other regions, although there has been a positive migration balance since 2014 - also since 2019 regarding the internal migration of the German population. In 2015 the population grew by 9,922 people. Despite a slight increase in the birth rate since 1994, the reproductive rate only reached around 50 percent. According to a population forecast by the State Statistical Office of Saxony-Anhalt (detailed below), the population will decrease to around 1.9 million by 2025. If this prognosis is correct, the population of Saxony-Anhalt would have shrunk by around 30 percent since the fall of the Wall. The districts of Mansfeld-Südharz, Salzlandkreis and Anhalt-Bitterfeld are particularly hard hit, while the two large cities have stabilized.

    The population after the 2007 district reform was between 92,000 and 237,000 in the urban districts and between 96,000 and 247,000 in the rural districts (2005 data). The population density in the new district areas fluctuates between 42 and 159 inhabitants per square kilometer (data status 2005). The two districts of Altmark, the district of Jerichower Land and the district of Wittenberg, have particularly low values.

    The proportion of foreigners (residents without German citizenship ; dual nationals do not count as foreigners) was 2.8 percent in Saxony-Anhalt on December 31, 2014, making it  the third lowest in the other German states - after Thuringia and Brandenburg .

    The fertility rate per woman was 1.61 children in 2017, slightly above the national average of 1.57 children.

    Population development in the districts and urban districts

    The fifth regionalized population forecast for Saxony-Anhalt from 2008 to 2025 by the State Statistical Office of Saxony-Anhalt predicts a further decline in population. This was expected less strongly for the big cities than for more remote, economically weak and sparsely populated districts and areas with large housing estates. The forecast includes the following population development:

    Local authority Area
    in km²
    2015 3)


    2015 1)

    2020 3)

    2025 1)
    Relative population
    decline 2005–2025
    in percent
    Population density
    2005 per km²
    Population density in
    2025 1) per km²
    City of Dessau-Roßlau 244.74 92,339 82 919 - 79,855 78,681 14.8 377 321
    City of Halle (Saale) 135.01 237.198 236 991 - 238.158 206.120 13.1 1,757 1,527
    City of Magdeburg 201.00 229.126 235.723 - 236.831 208.272 9.1 1,140 1,036
    Altmarkkreis Salzwedel 2,293.05 96.040 86.164 - 83.084 78,566 18.2 42 34
    Anhalt-Bitterfeld district 1,453.51 190,771 164.817 - 158.359 136,579 28.4 131 94
    Borde district 2,366.64 190.080 173.473 178,200 170,859 160.299 15.7 80 75
    Burgenland district 1,413.69 207,727 184.081 182,300 178,707 152.032 26.8 147 107
    Harz district 2,104.55 247,490 221.366 225,300 212,659 209.149 15.5 118 99
    District of Jerichower Land 1,576.77 102.402 91,693 - 89,523 80,343 21.5 65 55
    Mansfeld-Südharz district 1,448.82 163,620 141,408 142,700 134,525 115.734 29.3 113 80
    Saalekreis 1,433.66 208.094 186,431 186,800 183,677 184.716 11.2 145 129
    Salzlandkreis 1,426.68 226,593 196,695 198,600 188,699 164,480 27.4 159 115
    District of Stendal 2,423.15 131,267 115.262 - 110,944 96.114 26.8 54 40
    Wittenberg district 1,930.30 146.969 128,447 - 124,915 105.152 28.5 76 54
    State of Saxony-Anhalt (total) 20,451.58 2,469,716 2,245,470 2,238,286 2,190,795 1,976,237 20.0 121 97

    1) 5. Regionalized population forecast by the State Statistical Office of Saxony-Anhalt

    3) For comparison and for the sake of completeness, the figures actually ascertained in the update.

    Population forecast

    In the 2011 2011 Bertelsmann Stiftung population forecast for the community of communities in Saxony-Anhalt, a steady population decline of 13.6 percent is predicted by 2030.

    Population forecast 2011 for Saxony-Anhalt
    date Residents
    December 31, 2009 2,354,830
    December 31, 2015 2,217,180
    December 31, 2020 2,113,040
    December 31, 2025 2.008.060
    December 31, 2030 1,901,200

    The sixth regionalized population forecast for Saxony-Anhalt from 2016 to 2030 by the State Statistical Office of Saxony-Anhalt continues to forecast a population decline. The two large cities will initially continue to grow and only lose part of their growth again from the mid-2020s. The forecast includes the following population development:

    Local authority Inhabitants
    2025 2)
    2030 2)
    in population 2014–2030 in percent
    City of Dessau-Roßlau 82 919 75,553 70,825 −14.7
    City of Halle (Saale) 236 991 240,582 238,551 2.6
    City of Magdeburg 235.723 242,376 241.056 3.8
    Altmarkkreis Salzwedel 86.164 78,265 74,039 −14.0
    Anhalt-Bitterfeld district 164.817 150,476 141,854 −14.1
    Borde district 173.473 159,236 151.375 −12.4
    Burgenland district 184.081 167,068 157.308 −14.5
    Harz district 221.366 201,298 190,465 −13.3
    District of Jerichower Land 91,693 82,823 78.112 −14.5
    Mansfeld-Südharz district 141,408 123,887 114,858 −19.1
    Saalekreis 186,431 172.389 163,762 −12.2
    Salzlandkreis 196,695 174.306 162,804 −17.3
    District of Stendal 115.262 103,452 97.605 −14.9
    Wittenberg district 128,447 115.038 107,709 −16.3
    State of Saxony-Anhalt (total) 2,245,470 2,086,750 1,990,324 −11.0

    2) 6. Regionalized population forecast by the State Statistical Office of Saxony-Anhalt



    The constitution of the state of Saxony-Anhalt was passed in 1992 by the state parliament of Saxony-Anhalt . It is divided into four main parts.


    State Parliament of Saxony-Anhalt on Domplatz in Magdeburg; in the foreground a reconstructed floor plan of the Magdeburg imperial palace, which stood here around 1000 AD
    State Chancellery , Palais am Fürstenwall in Magdeburg

    In the first free election after the (re) establishment of the country in 1990, the CDU (39.0 percent) and the FDP, which with 13.5 percent achieved its best result to date in East Germany, formed a black-yellow coalition under Prime Minister Gerd Gies (CDU). Gies resigned in July 1991, followed by Werner Münch (CDU) , who had been Finance Minister to date . When Münch also resigned in November 1993, Christoph Bergner (CDU) was elected Prime Minister. High unemployment and the poor economic situation in the former focus area of ​​the chemical industry and heavy engineering led to high voter dissatisfaction with the black-yellow coalition. In the 1994 state elections , the SPD, with 34 percent, drew almost level with the CDU (34.4 percent). However, since the FDP left the state parliament with 3.6 percent, the CDU lost its coalition partner. So the SPD top candidate Reinhard Höppner was initially able to form a red-green minority coalition with the Greens, with the tolerance of the PDS. After the Greens left the state parliament in the state elections in 1998 , Höppner formed an SPD minority government under tolerance of the PDS. This became known as the Magdeburg model . The success of the right-wing extremist DVU, which achieved 12.9 percent, also caused a stir.

    With the election for the fourth state parliament of Saxony-Anhalt in March 2002 , the previously ruling SPD fell behind the CDU and PDS with double-digit losses and only became the third largest party in the state parliament. The DVU was broken by internal disputes and left the state parliament again. In contrast, the FDP was able to move into the state parliament again with a result of 13.3 percent, while the CDU and FDP formed the government under the new Prime Minister Wolfgang Böhmer . In the 2006 state elections , the FDP suffered a loss of 6.7 percent, but it was no longer enough to re-form a coalition with the CDU (36.2 percent). Therefore, the CDU and the SPD formed a grand coalition under the renewed Prime Minister Böhmer. In the state elections in 2011 , the Greens were able to move back into the state parliament for the first time since 1998 , after failing to pass the five percent hurdle in 2006 . The FDP left the state parliament with further losses and a result of 3.8 percent. A mathematically possible red-red coalition led by the left (23.7 percent) was strictly ruled out by the SPD (21.5 percent) with its top candidate Jens Bullerjahn , as the left claimed the post of prime minister for itself. Thus, under the new Prime Minister Reiner Haseloff (CDU) , the CDU and SPD once again formed a grand coalition. Incumbent Böhmer did not run again for reasons of age. From 1994 to 2016, Saxony-Anhalt had a four-party parliament with alternating participation.

    In the state elections on March 13, 2016 , the majority structure changed significantly: The AfD , which was running for the first time, received 24.3 percent of the votes from scratch and replaced the left as the second strongest force in the state parliament. The Left Party itself achieved third place with significant losses and 16.3 percent, while the SPD fell from 21.5 percent of the vote to 10.6 percent and thus only reached fourth place. Furthermore, the CDU was the strongest force with 29.8 percent, the fifth was the Greens.

    For the first time in the country's history, the CDU and SPD failed to achieve an independent majority, so that Prime Minister Rainer Haseloff formed the first nationwide “ Kenya coalition ” made up of the CDU, SPD and Bündnis 90 / Die Grünen.

    President of the state parliament of Saxony-Anhalt
    Upper President of the Province of Saxony-Anhalt

    State governments

    Claudia Dalbert Petra Grimm-Benne Jens Bullerjahn Horst Rehberger Gerlinde Kuppe Heidrun Heidecke Wolfgang Rauls Gerd Brunner Reiner Haseloff Wolfgang Böhmer Reinhard Höppner Christoph Bergner Werner Münch Gerd Gies

    Prime ministers and state governments of Saxony-Anhalt
    No. Surname Life dates Political party Beginning of the term of office Term expires Ruling parties
    1 Erhard Hubener 1881-1958 LDPD July 21, 1947 August 13, 1949 1946–50: SED / LDPD / CDU, from 1949 NDPD
    2 Werner Bruschke 1898-1995 SED August 13, 1949 July 23, 1952 1950-52: SED / LDPD / DBD / NDPD
    After reunification
    1 Gerd Gies * 1943 CDU October 28, 1990 4th July 1991 CDU + FDP
    2 Werner Münch * 1940 CDU 4th July 1991 November 28, 1993 CDU + FDP
    3 Christoph Bergner * 1948 CDU 2nd December 1993 July 21, 1994 CDU + FDP
    4th Reinhard Höppner 1948-2014 SPD July 21, 1994 May 16, 2002 1994-1998: SPD + Greens (minority government, tolerated by PDS)
    1998-2002: SPD (minority government, tolerated by PDS)
    5 Wolfgang Böhmer * 1936 CDU May 16, 2002 April 19, 2011 2002-2006: CDU + FDP
    2006-2011: CDU + SPD
    6th Pure Haseloff * 1954 CDU April 19, 2011 officiating 2011-2016: CDU + SPD
    Since April 25, 2016: CDU + SPD + Greens


    On January 23, 2005, a referendum took place in the country on childcare in day-care centers . This failed spuriously, among other things. in the low turnout .


    According to the report on the protection of the constitution , the proportion of right-wing extremist acts of violence was higher in 2005 than in other German countries. In the first quarter of 2007 the number of crimes was almost halved, which was only due to a “different interpretation” of crimes by the State Criminal Police Office . In 2006 there were 1,240 right-wing extremist crimes.

    In November 2018, in a small request in the state parliament of Saxony-Anhalt, initiated by the AfD parliamentary group, new figures on political crime were named. According to this, in the previous year 2017, after a significant drop, there were only 1,461 crimes motivated by legal policy (including 105 violent crimes), a further 357 crimes motivated by left-wing politics (including 41 violent crimes) and 30 religious crimes as well as 14 political crimes committed by foreign ideologies.

    Administrative structure

    Saxony-Anhalt is administratively divided into eleven administrative districts and three independent cities . The current administrative structure was created through two district reforms, whereby in the first district area reform on July 1, 1994, 21 new districts were formed from 37 districts, the number of which was reduced to eleven on July 1, 2007 ( see also: District reform Saxony-Anhalt 2007 ).

    Altmarkkreis Salzwedel Landkreis Stendal Landkreis Börde Magdeburg Landkreis Jerichower Land Landkreis Harz Salzlandkreis Landkreis Anhalt-Bitterfeld Dessau-Roßlau Landkreis Wittenberg Saalekreis Halle (Saale) Burgenlandkreis Landkreis Mansfeld-Südharz Berlin Sachsen Thüringen Niedersachsen BrandenburgCounties and independent cities in Saxony-Anhalt
    About this picture
    Administrative division of the state of Saxony-Anhalt
    Local authority Population
    (December 31, 2019)
    Population density
    (people per km²)
    Altmarkkreis Salzwedel (SAW) 83.173 2,293.05 36
    County of Anhalt-Bitterfeld (ABI) 158.486 1,453.51 109
    District of Börde (BK) 170.923 2,366.64 72
    Burgenland District (BLK) 178,846 1,413.69 127
    District of Harz (HZ) 213.310 2,104.55 101
    District of Jerichower Land (JL) 89,589 1,576.77 57
    Mansfeld-Südharz district (MSH) 134,942 1,448.82 93
    Saalekreis (SK) 183,815 1,433.66 128
    Salzlandkreis (SLK) 189,125 1,426.68 133
    District of Stendal (SDL) 111.190 2,423.15 46
    District of Wittenberg (WB) 124,953 1,930.30 65
    Dessau-Roßlau (DE), independent city 80.103 244.74 327
    Halle (Saale) (HAL), independent city 238,762 135.01 1,768
    Magdeburg (MD), independent state capital 237,565 201.00 1,182
    State of Saxony-Anhalt (total) 2,194,782 20,451.58 107

    Saxony-Anhalt is divided into 218 municipalities, including 104 cities, three of which are independent (as of January 1, 2014). Up to December 31, 2009 there were 857 municipalities, some of which were united in administrative communities to fulfill their tasks . As part of the municipal reform in 2010, the administrative communities were dissolved and converted into association communities or unitary communities.

    Until 2003 there were three administrative districts in Saxony-Anhalt: Dessau , Halle and Magdeburg . These were dissolved on January 1, 2004, the work of the regional councils was taken over by the state administrative office set up for the entire state with headquarters in Halle (Saale) and branches in Dessau and Magdeburg.

    Most populous cities

    Market square in Halle (Saale)
    The Magdeburg Cathedral at night
    View over the old town of Wittenberg
    View from the castle garden to the Merseburg castle
    Most populous cities in the state of Saxony-Anhalt
    rank city district Inhabitants
    December 31, 2017
    January 1, 2018
    2010–2017 in%
    Territorial status
    January 1, 2018
    01. Halle (Saale) circular 239.173 +2.7 135.01
    02. Magdeburg , state capital circular 238.478 +3.0 201.00
    03. Dessau-Rosslau circular 82.111 −5.5 244.74
    04th Lutherstadt Wittenberg Wittenberg 46.272 −6.5 240.34
    05. Weissenfels Burgenland district 40,874 −1.4 113.55
    06th Halberstadt resin 40,871 −4.1 142.98
    07th Stendal Stendal 39,822 −6.2 268.02
    08th. Bitterfeld-Wolfen Anhalt-Bitterfeld 39.103 −13.4 86.96
    09. Merseburg Saalekreis 34,197 −3.5 53.76
    10. Bernburg (Saale) Salzlandkreis 32,876 −7.4 113.46
    11. Wernigerode resin 32,837 −4.5 170.17
    12th Naumburg (Saale) Burgenland district 32,755 −4.5 129.90
    13. Schönebeck (Elbe) Salzlandkreis 31,038 −8.4 86.01
    14th Time Burgenland district 28,381 −10.1 87.16
    15th Aschersleben Salzlandkreis 27,712 −4.7 156.23
    16. Sangerhausen Mansfeld-Südharz 26,798 −9.7 207.66
    17th Koethen (Anhalt) Anhalt-Bitterfeld 26,157 −7.4 78.44
    18th Staßfurt Salzlandkreis 25,830 −9.7 146.70
    19th Quedlinburg resin 24,216 −14.8 120.45
    20th Salzwedel Altmarkkreis Salzwedel 24.002 −3.5 304.57
    21. Lutherstadt Eisleben Mansfeld-Südharz 23,651 −7.2 143.86
    22nd Guards Altmarkkreis Salzwedel 22,614 −5.7 632.43
    23 Castle Jerichower Land 22,583 −6.5 164.05
    24. Zerbst / Anhalt Anhalt-Bitterfeld 21,702 −6.3 467.77
    25th Blankenburg (Harz) resin 19,985 −8.8 148.89
    26 Oschersleben (Bode) Börde 19,807 −4.9 188.92

    badges and flags

    The coat of arms of Saxony-Anhalt symbolizes the former Prussian province of Saxony in the upper field and the former Free State of Anhalt in the lower field. The national colors are yellow-black.

    Coat of arms of Saxony-Anhalt Flag of Saxony-Anhalt (state) .svg
    State coat of arms Country flag

    For more details, see the articles Coat of Arms of Saxony-Anhalt and Flag of Saxony-Anhalt

    Order of Merit of the State of Saxony-Anhalt


    The state of Saxony-Anhalt maintains the following partnerships:

    Economy and Infrastructure


    The state capital Magdeburg is the seat of the State Broadcasting House of Saxony-Anhalt , which belongs to the Central German Broadcasting Corporation . The Sachsen-Anhalt media authority is based in Halle (Saale) . In some areas there are private TV channels such as Magdeburger TV 1 , RAN 1, regional TV Harz or TV Halle . The largest daily newspapers are the Volksstimme , published in Magdeburg, and the Mitteldeutsche Zeitung in Halle (Saale), each with a circulation of around 190,000 copies.


    Open-cast lignite mining by Romonta GmbH in
    Amsdorf is still active

    After 1945

    With the division of the states into districts, the area of ​​today's Saxony-Anhalt was essentially divided into the two districts of Halle and Magdeburg in 1952 . In the planned economy of the GDR, the Halle district was expanded into a chemical location, characterized by large chemical plants in Leuna ( Leunawerke ), Schkopau ( Buna-Werke ) and Bitterfeld / Wolfen, which still form the so-called Central German Chemical Triangle today. The Central German lignite district , to which the Geiseltal and the Bitterfeld mining district belong, as well as the copper ore mining in the Mansfeld region and around Sangerhausen employed tens of thousands of workers. The economy in the Magdeburg district, on the other hand, was characterized on the one hand by large-scale agriculture in the Börde and Altmark , on the other hand by heavy machinery combines such as SKET , VEB Schwermaschinenbau "Karl Liebknecht" or VEB Schwermaschinenbau Georgi Dimitroff in Magdeburg, in which the numerous mechanical engineering companies from the period before 1945 were summarized.

    Since 1990

    Saxony-Anhalt processed the economic structural change after 1990 with success and setbacks at the same time. The large combines had severe structural difficulties in the transition to the social market economy, as their technical systems were mostly completely out of date, were characterized by a high level of labor and caused severe environmental damage. In particular, the combines in mechanical engineering, the chemical triangle and mining collapsed quickly after the fall of the Wall, which resulted in the loss of tens of thousands of jobs. Unemployment rose from 10.3% (167,127 people) in 1991 to 16.5% (208,149 people) in 1995 to the highest level of 21.7% in 1998/1999 and remained at this level, which was the highest in Germany at that time Over several years until 2005. From 2005, unemployment fell slowly and continuously to 7.3% in December 2018. There was a gap within the state: The rate in the Börde district in December 2018 was 5.3% and was in the district Mansfeld-Südharz with 10.0 percent almost twice as high.

    In April 2021 - in the midst of the corona pandemic - the unemployment rate in Saxony-Anhalt was 7.7% and was thus lower than in Hamburg (8%) and at the same level as in North Rhine-Westphalia (7.7%).

    Agriculture as one of the most successful branches in Saxony-Anhalt

    Overall, the country has experienced a slow but relatively steady economic recovery since 1990. The gross domestic product (GDP) doubled in seven years from 20.3 billion euros in 1991 to 42.7 billion euros in 1998. The next seven years up to 2005 were characterized by less dynamism, with GDP growing only to 47.4 billion euros Billion euros, which corresponds to around ten percent growth. In 2006 growth picked up again and GDP rose to 52.7 billion euros by 2008, which corresponds to around eleven percent in three years. With a setback caused by the financial and economic crisis in 2009, GDP in 2010 was 52.1 billion euros, which puts it in 12th place in a country comparison. In comparison with the GDP of the EU, expressed in purchasing power standards, Saxony-Anhalt achieved an index of 87.0 in 2014 (EU 28: 100 Germany: 126.0). The prosperity of Saxony-Anhalt is below the national average not only in terms of GDP, but also in terms of other indicators. With a wealth quota of 3.0%, Saxony-Anhalt and Mecklenburg-Western Pomerania took last place in a comparison of the federal states in 2015 (national average 7.5%). In contrast, Saxony-Anhalt had the second highest poverty rate after Bremen at 21.4% in 2019 and the highest among the large states, almost on a par with Mecklenburg-Western Pomerania. However, if the calculation of the at-risk-of-poverty rate is based on the median income of the respective state (state median), i.e. if each state is considered separately, Saxony-Anhalt is almost on par with Bavaria (14.7%) with a rate of 14.8% and better than the national average (15.9%).

    The most important branches of the economy today are primarily the chemical, mineral oil and pharmaceutical industries ( Dow Olefinverbund , Total Raffinerie Mitteldeutschland, SKW Piesteritz , Salutas ), the automotive supply industry ( IFA , Thyssenkrupp ), mechanical engineering ( FAM , EMAG , KSB ) and the metal industry ( MKM , Novelis , Salzgitter , Trimet ), the food industry ( Rotkäppchen-Mumm , Hasseröder , Lieken , Aryzta / Klemme ), health care ( Ameos , Salus) and tourism , supported by a strong, publicly funded research landscape. In addition to the traditional sectors, the service sector and new industries such as the automotive industry , biotechnology , information and communication technology, media , wood industry, renewable raw materials , wind energy and photovoltaics have established themselves as important sectors. The country's relative structural weakness persists, however, since it is unusual nowadays for industrial companies with tens of thousands of employees to settle in highly developed industrial countries such as Germany.

    The chemical industry in Saxony-Anhalt in particular is a national leader in some areas. In 2017, fertilizers and nitrogen compounds worth 808.6 million euros were produced in the state, which corresponds to a share of 26 percent of total production in Germany.

    Saxony-Anhalt also has a strong, highly productive pharmaceutical industry with plants from numerous well-known manufacturers such as Bayer , Hexal , Dermapharm / Mibe, Klocke-Gruppe / IDT Biologika . Bayer Bitterfeld is the location where aspirin is manufactured for the German market - around 10 billion tablets a year and more than 120 billion since 1995. In addition, a substantial part (around 30%) of German vaccine production comes from Dessau-Roßlau (IDT Biologika) and Brehna (Dermapharm / Mibe). Vaccines from AstraZeneca , Johnson and Johnson / Janssen and Biontech are produced here to combat the corona pandemic .

    Saxony-Anhalt's food and luxury food industry is characterized by nationally known brands such as Rotkäppchen , Hasseröder , Halloren , Kathi , Zetti , Argenta and Wikana . In addition, leading margarine brands ( Rama, Lätta , Becel ) and toast and bread brands ( Golden Toast , Lieken Urkorn ) are produced in Lutherstadt Wittenberg in Germany . Rotkäppchen-Mumm from Freyburg (Unstrut) is Germany's largest sparkling wine manufacturer , Halloren from Halle is the oldest chocolate factory in Germany. Germany's largest mineral water producer ( MEG Group ) and important slaughterhouses ( Tönnies ) are located in Weißenfels . The basis for the strong food industry are, among other things, the best - and sometimes the most productive - soils in Germany and sometimes Europe, which are located in the Magdeburg Börde , and a highly automated agriculture . Saxony-Anhalt is therefore the breadbasket of Germany.

    One of the largest employers for the people in Saxony-Anhalt is located a few kilometers west of the state border with Lower Saxony: The largest factory in the world, the Volkswagen factory in Wolfsburg , which employs around 10,000 Saxony-Anhalters.

    In Saxony-Anhalt itself, around 270 automotive suppliers employ around 26,000 people. The Haldensleben IFA Group , the largest cardan shaft manufacturer in Europe, is one of the country's largest automotive suppliers . The automotive supplier industry in Saxony-Anhalt is organized in the MAHREG Automotive cluster.

    One of the largest photovoltaic companies in the world, Hanwha Q Cells , has its global headquarters for technology and innovation in Thalheim in the Solar Valley .

    Saxony-Anhalt also has numerous companies active in e-commerce . So get out of the country some of the first and largest Internet pharmacies (myCare from Wittenberg , Bodfeld from Blankenburg , iPill from Gräfenhainichen ). The Swiss Zur Rose Group , known under the Doc Morris brand , once started its German business with the establishment of a German headquarters in Halle . Also based in Halle is the startup Relaxdays, a product developer, marketer and mail order company that has since grown into the largest e-commerce company in Central Germany (2021).

    Innovative and multiple award-winning startups like Tesvolt and Ecosia were founded by Wittenbergers.

    A startup founder from Dessau also stood behind Unister (“”), which is domiciled in Leipzig, which is almost bordering Saxony-Anhalt , and which has at least meanwhile been the largest German online travel company, which would have paid 900 million euros ProSieben and whose travel brands have meanwhile been sold to the Czech-Chinese travel group Invia Group .

    The region between the hall and lying in Saxony Leipzig forms an economic priority region , the benefits particularly from a cargo transportation technical accessibility (highways A 9 , A 14 , A 38 , A 143 , Leipzig-Halle airport , railway node Hall ). Traditionally, the area with the “Chemiedreieck” is a focus of the chemical and petroleum industry in Germany. The largest foreign investments in all of Eastern Germany have been made in Leuna in recent years. The region north and west of Magdeburg, with its favorable location between Berlin and Hanover at the intersection of the A 2 and A 14 and the waterway intersection, has increasingly become a focus of investment and settlement.

    In 2020, Saxony-Anhalt was the federal state in which economic output fell the least sharply and thus showed the best economic development nationwide in 2020.

    Most important locations of employment subject to social security contributions
    workplace social insurance
    June 30, 2019
    since June 30, 2015
    in percent 2
    Commuter balance
    June 30, 2019 2
    Job density 1 2
    Magdeburg 108,684 +3.28 +14,765 804
    Halle (Saale) 97.378 +4.41 +10,002 721
    Dessau-Rosslau 33,890 +1.12 +3,337 841
    Lutherstadt Wittenberg 21,486 +5.68 +2,722 1.109
    Bitterfeld-Wolfen 21,441 +4.47 +5,988 921
    Stendal 16,749 −4.26 +2,081 775
    Wernigerode 16,261 −0.94 +2,677 951
    Bernburg (Saale) 15,845 +2.25 +2,727 899
    Halberstadt 15,552 +0.43 +367 734
    Haldensleben 15,244 +10.47 +6,318 1,462
    1Jobs subject to social security contributions per 1000 people of working age from 15 to under 65 years of age; Numbers 31 December 2018 in accordance with updating of the population prior to Vital Statistics Act based on the census 2011th
    2 Own calculation
    Development of the gross domestic product (nominal, at market prices) in blue and the unemployment rate in% in red since 1990
    Development of the unemployment rate
    year GDP in € million 3 Unemployment rate
    1995 38,290 15.7
    2000 42,430 20.2
    2005 45,864 20.2
    2010 51,350 12.5
    2015 58.093 10.2
    2019 63,545 7.1
    3 Gross domestic product (nominal, at market prices) in million euros

    Universities and research institutions

    A distinctive research and science landscape has developed in Saxony-Anhalt since 1990. In addition to the Otto von Guericke University Magdeburg and the Martin Luther University Halle-Wittenberg , the state of Saxony-Anhalt has eight other universities.

    The rector's villa on the Wernigerode university campus (HS Harz)

    Research facilities of the major German research institutes have settled around the two universities in particular. Today there are five institutes of the Gottfried Wilhelm Leibniz Science Association , three Max Planck Institutes , one Max Planck Research Center, two Fraunhofer facilities and locations of two major research institutes of the Helmholtz Association . There is also the Julius Kühn Institute based in Quedlinburg . The Robert Koch Institute also maintains a property with a focus on infectious diseases in Wernigerode.

    Leibniz Association

    Max Planck Society

    Fraunhofer Society

    Helmholtz Association

    With partially explicit city quarters and locations for research institutes such as the Science Harbor in Magdeburg and the Weinberg Campus in Halle, the cities are trying to particularly support the establishment of other technology and research-related institutions.

    With the German Academy of Natural Scientists Leopoldina , the oldest permanent natural research academy in the world has its seat in Saxony-Anhalt. On July 14, 2008, the Leopoldina was declared the National Academy of Sciences in Germany. It has been based in Halle since 1878.


    Gross electricity generation in Saxony-Anhalt, shares in% (2018)

    During the GDR era, the Stendal nuclear power plant was supposed to be the largest of its kind and, with a total output of 4,000 megawatts, would also have become the largest nuclear power plant in Germany as a whole. The Schkopau power plant is currently the largest power plant that runs on fossil fuels and has an output of 900 MW. The largest wind farm in the country is located between the towns of Biere and Borne ; it has an output of 109 MW.

    In a comparison of the federal states “Renewable Energy”, Saxony-Anhalt was named the winner in the “Economic Engine” category in 2012. Although it only ranks 5th in the overall ranking, the country is doing particularly well in terms of the economic and employment effects of the renewable energy sector. The regional added value through wind, sun and biomass is promoted through production plants from companies in the sector, but also through intensive use of renewable energies . According to the state government's 2020 energy concept, renewable energies should account for 20% of primary energy consumption by 2020.

    Wind energy is particularly important . In 2012, the wind turbines installed in Saxony-Anhalt were able to cover around 55% of the state's net electricity needs. This puts the state in fourth place in Germany after Mecklenburg-Western Pomerania. In mid-2016, 2,731 wind turbines with a total output of 4,689 MW were installed. The tradition of increased use of wind power goes back deep into the 19th century, especially in Anhalt.

    The State Statistical Office of Saxony-Anhalt regularly publishes data on electricity generation and consumption. In 2018, 26.7 billion kWh of electricity was generated in Saxony-Anhalt. Of these, 27.8% were generated by lignite (7.4 billion kWh) and 15.1% by natural gas (4 billion kWh). With 51.2%, the main share of electricity generation was made up of renewable energies (13.7 billion kWh). This 51.2% can be divided into 30.5% wind power (8.1 billion kWh), further 11.1% biomass (2.9 billion kWh), and 9.1% photovoltaics (2.4 billion kWh). kWh) and less than one percent hydropower as well as sewage and landfill gas.

    Rail transport

    One of the first railway lines in Germany was opened between Köthen and Dessau in 1840 . After the section-wise expansion of the so-called Anhalter Bahn via Wittenberg and Jüterbog , this line ended in Berlin's Anhalter Bahnhof . Köthen became the first railway junction in Germany because it was already on the Magdeburg-Leipzig railway . Their route reached Köthen in June 1840 after traffic had started between Magdeburg and Schönebeck in 1839.

    Today the most important railway lines in the state are the Lehrter Bahn line from Berlin to Hanover via Stendal, the Berlin – Halle line as a connection between Berlin and Munich, the Berlin – Magdeburg line , the Magdeburg – Braunschweig line with connections to Hanover and the railway line Magdeburg – Leipzig , with which Magdeburg and Halle are connected. In addition, there is a network of other main and branch lines that connect the cities of the state, for example from Magdeburg and Halle to the Harz suburbs and the Harz. These routes are mainly served by the transport company Abellio Rail Mitteldeutschland , which in Saxony-Anhalt has the second most train kilometers after Deutsche Bahn . The Harz Narrow Gauge Railways (HSB) are primarily used for tourism purposes .

    The most important railway hubs are Halle and Magdeburg , and the stations in Stendal , Halberstadt , Köthen , Dessau , Lutherstadt Wittenberg , Bitterfeld , Weißenfels , Naumburg and Sangerhausen are also important.

    There are S-Bahn ( S-Bahn Mittelelbe , S-Bahn Mitteldeutschland ) in the greater Magdeburg and Halle areas .

    Road network

    The five federal motorways that run through the country are of supraregional importance. The A 2 Berlin– Hanover runs in east-west direction in northern Saxony-Anhalt past Magdeburg , in the eastern part of the country the A 9 Berlin– Munich runs north-south and opens up the cities of Dessau, Bitterfeld, Halle and Weissenfels. The A 14 runs right through Saxony-Anhalt from Dresden via Halle to Magdeburg, touching Bernburg, Staßfurt and Schönebeck. An extension of this motorway to the north via Stendal, Osterburg (Altmark) and Wittenberge (Brandenburg) to the Dreieck Schwerin ( Altmark motorway ) is planned. The A 36 begins near Bernburg and connects the cities of Aschersleben, Quedlinburg, Thale, Blankenburg (Harz) and Wernigerode to the north of the Harz Mountains and leads to Braunschweig. In the south of Saxony-Anhalt, the A 38 ( Leipzig - Göttingen ) runs east-west , touches Sangerhausen and opens up the southern Harz. This motorway is connected to the A 14 by the still unfinished A 143 , which leads around the city of Halle to the west and, once completed, is to become the Central German Loop , a double motorway ring around the cities of Halle and Leipzig. However, their completion has been prevented for several years by environmental groups.

    The north of Saxony-Anhalt is developed from Magdeburg mainly by the B 71 and B 189 , which, due to the lack of a motorway, have a high volume of traffic in this area. The B 71 connects Haldensleben, Gardelegen and Salzwedel, the B 189 the cities of Stendal, Osterburg (Altmark) and Seehausen (Altmark). The B 190 connects the north of Saxony-Anhalt from Salzwedel to Seehausen. The continuation of the B 6 from the Bernburg interchange at the A 14 to the A 9 south of Dessau is already in operation as far as Köthen. The last section between Köthen and the A 9 south of Dessau is to be completed in 2022.

    Road network in the state of Saxony-Anhalt
    year Federal motorway
    in km
    Federal roads
    in km
    State roads
    in km
    1995 199 2,326 3,845
    2000 320 2,403 3,834
    2003 360 2,359 3,778
    2005 384 2,416 3,819
    2010 550 2,319 3,930
    2015 624 2,298 4,054

    The Romanesque Road runs through Saxony-Anhalt as part of the Transromanica , a holiday route that was established because of the great Romanesque heritage of this landscape. The Bismarck family's road also runs through Saxony-Anhalt .

    Air traffic

    Map of the airports and landing fields in Saxony-Anhalt

    The international airport Leipzig / Halle is located between Halle and Leipzig in Saxony . Magdeburg airfield is located in Magdeburg and is primarily used by sports and private pilots. Near the city of Aschersleben there is the Cochstedt Airport , which was without operation for several years and was used by Ryanair from March 30, 2011 to the end of 2013 . The airport filed for bankruptcy in January 2016.


    By Saxony-Anhalt proceed with the Elbe, the Saale, the Midland Canal and the Elbe-Havel Canal important waterways that are on in the state capital Magdeburg waterway junction meet. Inland ports exist among others. with the port of Magdeburg and the port of Halle (Saale) .


    In contrast to the neighboring states of Brandenburg, Saxony or Thuringia, the cultural landscape of Saxony-Anhalt is extremely different from region to region and has relatively few similarities. First of all, the old German farming area west of the Saale and Elbe, which was populated from 700 onwards, differs from the Slavic settlement areas east of the two rivers that were Germanized during the German colonization in the 12th century.

    From 700 onwards, a settlement area arose between Magdeburg and the Harz Mountains, which - like the adjoining southern Lower Saxony - is counted as part of Ostfalen . At the same time, an area characterized by Thuringia between Zeitz and Sangerhausen was created south of the Harz Mountains. In the north of the country the settlement area of ​​the Altmark was formed around the year 1000 , which is very similar to today's Brandenburg. The same applies to the Jerichower Land between the Elbe and Fläming. In the south-east of the country, between Halle and Wittenberg, a region emerged from 1100 that has close cultural ties to Saxony. In the middle of the country , the Anhalt region stretches in a narrow strip from the Harz Mountains to Dessau , which is a mixed region of cultural influences from Eastern Westphalia, Thuringia, Saxony and Brandenburg.

    This means that today's state of Saxony-Anhalt can be divided into the cultural areas Altmark in the north, Jerichower Land in the east, Ostfalen in the west, Thuringian areas in the southwest and Saxon areas in the southeast. In between, in the center of the state, is Anhalt.


    Bauhaus Dessau in Dessau-Roßlau , part of the
    UNESCO World Heritage Site

    On December 31, 2006, 1,116,692 of 2,441,787 inhabitants lived in cities with more than 20,000 inhabitants, which corresponds to a relatively low degree of urbanization of 45.73%. Although most cities have been shrinking since 1940, they are the country's cultural centers. This applies in particular to the two largest cities, Magdeburg and Halle, as well as to the Bauhaus city of Dessau and Lutherstadt Wittenberg . Due to the cultural differences of the parts of the country, the cityscapes also differ considerably. The cities of Stendal , Salzwedel , Tangermünde , Gardelegen and Burg , for example, are influenced by the brick Gothic of the North German Middle Ages . The cities in the Harz region such as Halberstadt , Wernigerode , Sangerhausen , Aschersleben and, in particular, Quedlinburg and Eisleben are particularly characterized by the Romanesque and Gothic styles . Even today, Naumburg , Merseburg , Zeitz and Schönebeck still have a medieval character in their soft image. The following stylistic epochs of the Renaissance and the Baroque are represented in many cities, especially the Renaissance buildings in Wittenberg , which was flourishing at that time. The residential cities of Köthen , Bernburg and Weißenfels also have a large number of baroque buildings today. The largest city in the country, Halle , has a very mixed cityscape from Gothic to modern architecture. The town of Bitterfeld-Wolfen in particular has an industrial urban character . Due to the severe destruction in the Second World War, the inner cities of Magdeburg and Dessau-Roßlaus are mainly characterized by the socialist post-war architecture and buildings of recent times. According to the ideal of the socialist city , large parts of Wolfens and Halle-Neustadt , the largest prefabricated building city in the GDR, were built during GDR times . Overall, the cityscapes in Saxony-Anhalt are thus characterized by an enormous variety, which reflects the rich and eventful history of the region and the entire state.


    The Falkenstein Castle in the Harz

    The southern, hilly parts of the country were particularly favored for the construction of castles. In the north and in the plains, water castles were therefore mainly used . City castles (Magdeburg, Bernburg, Merseburg, Naumburg) also emerged along the German-Slavic settlement border in the early Middle Ages. The Ottonian royal palaces , which were located in Allstedt , Magdeburg, Memleben , Merseburg, Quedlinburg, Tilleda and Westerburg , are among the oldest castles in the country . The most important castles preserved today include Falkenstein Castle (Harz) , Landsberg Castle with a double chapel from the Staufer period, Neuchâtel near Freyburg an der Unstrut, the extensive Querfurt Castle , Rudelsburg and Saaleck Castle above the Naumburg Saale Valley, Giebichenstein Castle , the Moritzburg in Halle and the Wettin castle as the headquarters of the European ruling dynasty of Wettin and the castle Anhalt in the resin as origin Anhalt. There are also a large number of castles and castle ruins, especially in the Harz, but also in other parts of the country.

    The city of Magdeburg was later developed into a fortress by the Prussians and thus one of the strongest fortresses in Germany (see: Magdeburg Fortress )


    Most of the castles in Saxony-Anhalt date from the Renaissance and Baroque periods. In the Harz there are many city palaces that emerged from castles and are located above the medieval old towns. The best known of these locks is the Wernigerode Castle , but also the Stolberg Castle , the Blankenburg Castle or the Castle Mansfeld fall into this category lane. Often these are mixed forms of castle and palace.

    There are also some residential castles in Saxony-Anhalt. These include Bernburg Castle ( Principality of Anhalt-Bernburg ), Johannbau in Dessau ( Principality of Anhalt-Dessau ), Moritzburg Castle ( Saxony-Zeitz ), Neu-Augustusburg Castle ( Saxony-Weißenfels ) and Wittenberg Castle ( Electorate of Saxony ). A third group is made up of country and summer residences such as Mosigkau Castle near Dessau or the entire Dessau-Wörlitz Garden Realm with several small castles. Also Oranienbaum Palace and Schloss Zerbst ( Catherine the Great ) belong to this group. An example of a hunting lodge is the Jagdschlösschen mirror mountain from 1782 near Halberstadt .

    Churches and monasteries

    Saxony-Anhalt is rich in high medieval churches and monasteries of Ottonian architecture, Romanesque and Gothic . The Romanesque Road contains a large number of old sacred buildings, the density of which is probably unique in Germany.

    Dome and city churches

    There are several cathedrals ( Magdeburg Cathedral , Merseburg Cathedral , Naumburg Cathedral , Zeitzer Cathedral , Halberstadt Cathedral , Hallesch Cathedral and Havelberg Cathedral ) as well as a large number of large city churches (e.g. St. Stephani in Aschersleben, St. Stephani in Calbe, St. Mary's Church , the Johanniskirche in Dessau , the Martinikirche in Halberstadt, the Marktkirche in Halle, St. Jakob in Koethen, St. Wenzel in Naumburg, the Nikolaikirche in Quedlinburg, St. Jakobi in Schönebeck, St. Marien in Stendal, St. Stephan in Tangermünde and the town church in Wittenberg).

    In Magdeburg , in addition to the cathedral, the monastery of Our Lady , the Sankt-Petri-Kirche , the Sankt-Sebastian-Kirche , the Sankt-Johannis-Kirche and the Sankt-Nicolai-Kirche are still preserved from the numerous former churches.

    Collegiate and monastery churches

    Ottonian and Romanesque monastery churches are still preserved, such as the collegiate churches in Quedlinburg , Walbeck , Gernrode , Halberstadt and Jerichow . Also worth seeing are the Huysburg , the Drübeck Monastery , the Gröningen Monastery , the Hadmersleben Monastery , the Hamersleben Monastery , the Hillersleben Monastery and other former monasteries. The former Cistercian monastery Pforta is significant in terms of cultural history , in which the state school there has produced numerous important personalities in culture and politics since the 16th century .

    Since most of the monasteries and monasteries were dissolved after the Reformation, some buildings in medieval architecture have been preserved to this day.

    Drama and music

    The Anhalt Theater with 1,050 seats, the largest theater in Saxony-Anhalt.

    In the big cities of Halle and Magdeburg there is a large number of different theaters and theaters. There are also two theaters in Dessau-Roßlau. In addition, there are two opera houses in Saxony-Anhalt, the Halle Opera and the Magdeburg Theater .

    Other, small venues are spread across the state.


    Saxony-Anhalt has an extensive prehistory and early history. Numerous finds are exhibited in the State Museum for Prehistory in Halle. Among them is, for example, the Nebra Sky Disc from the 2nd millennium BC. A visitor center has also been built near the site in the Burgenland district in recent years.

    The Bauhaus Museum Dessau presents collection material from the region's art, design and the Bauhaus architecture school, which were important in the 20th century .

    With the life and work of the one who comes from Eisleben and, among other things, Reformer Martin Luther , who worked in Wittenberg , is concerned with the Luther memorials in Eisleben and Wittenberg .

    The Francke Foundations in Halle, founded in 1698, are home to a large number of cultural, social and scientific institutions.

    There is also an extensive collection of other museums in the major cities of Magdeburg and Halle, in Dessau and in various small towns.

    Historical libraries

    There are a number of libraries with significant historical pamphlet holdings , for example



    Saxony-Anhalt is a handball stronghold. The traditional SC Magdeburg plays in the 1st , the Dessau-Roßlauer HV in the 2nd handball Bundesliga . The second team of SC Magdeburg and SV Anhalt Bernburg also play in the third division . In the 2017/2018 season, the Halle handball women "Wildcats - SV Union Halle Neustadt" were promoted to the 1st Bundesliga.


    One of the most successful basketball clubs in Eastern Germany is located in southern Saxony-Anhalt. The Central German Basketball Club (MBC) from Weißenfels played for five years - from 1999 to 2004 - in the 1st basketball national league BBL . In 2004 the team won the European Cup of the FIBA ​​Europe Cup Men. After a few years in the 2nd Bundesliga Pro A and runners-up in 2006 and 2007, the MBC again achieved promotion to the 1st division in the 2008/2009 season. In the 2010/11 season, however, the club rose again, but managed to get promoted again. In 2016, the Weißenfelser had to leave the BBL for the third time, with promotion to the top division again in the following year.

    With the SV Halle Lions, Saxony-Anhalt also has a women's basketball team in the 1st Bundesliga DBBL .


    Saxony-Anhalt is home to the former European Cup winner 1. FC Magdeburg , who will play in the third division in the 2019/20 season , as well as Hallesche FC . In the Regional Northeast women playing Magdeburg FFC .


    In Oschersleben (Bode) is the Motorsport Arena Oschersleben , where national and international car and motorcycle races take place. In Teutschenthal there is a motocross race track, on which the motocross world championships have already taken place several times .

    ice Hockey

    In Halle, the Saale Bulls ice hockey club plays in the Oberliga Nord (2017/2018 season). The Saale Bulls have been playing in the Sparkassen-Eisdom since the 2014/15 season, as the Volksbank Arena was badly damaged by floods in 2013 and was finally demolished in spring 2016.


    Non-federal holidays

    Other statistics

    Saxony-Anhalt had the lowest suicide rate of all German states in 2006 and the highest rate in 2017. The suicide rate in 2006, 2017 and 2019 was significantly lower than in 1990.

    In the “ Mitte Study ” from 2015, the approval of xenophobic statements in individual German federal states was examined. In a comparison of the federal states, the highest agreement with xenophobic statements was in Saxony-Anhalt with 42.2% (national average: 24.3%, Bavaria: 33.1%), with anti-Semitic attitudes in Bavaria (12.6%) and Thuringia (12.2%) were far more widespread than in Saxony-Anhalt (8.3%), which had less pronounced anti-Semitic attitudes than NRW (9.4%) and Berlin (9.0%).

    Saxony-Anhalt regularly takes the top spots in vaccination rates across Germany.

    See also

    Portal: Saxony-Anhalt  - Overview of Wikipedia content on the topic of Saxony-Anhalt


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    Individual evidence

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    Coordinates: 51 ° 58 '  N , 11 ° 28'  E