Lower Saxony is located in the north-western part of Germany. It is also the second largest state by area and fourth population-wise. Lower Saxony borders the North Sea and the states of Hamburg, Mecklenburg-Vorpommern, Schleswig-Holstein, Saxony-Anhalt, Thuringia, North Rhine-Westphalia, Hesse and the Kingdom of the Netherlands. The state of Lower Saxony contains major cities such as Gottingen, Oldenburg, Osnabruck, Hanover and Braunschweig.
Lower Saxony was named after the Saxons. The Saxons lived in what is today called Schleswig-Holstein. In the late 15th century, the region was given the name of Lower Saxony.
Agriculture is very important in Lower Saxony’s economy. Poultry, pork, beef, oats, potatoes and wheat make up the agricultural products which the region depends on for exports also.
Mining is also important for Lower Saxony and has been here for centuries. Silver is a notable prosperity in the Harz Mountains. Iron mining in the Salzgitter and salt mining in many areas are also important economic backbones for Lower Saxony.
Manufacturing is also significant to the region. Even with gradual downsizing, Volkswagen has five production plants within the borders and remains the biggest private-sector employer to this day. The Volkswagen headquarters can be found in Wolfsburg.
Politics in the state since 1948 was dominated by rightist Christian Democratic Union (CDU) as well as the leftist Social Democratic Party. The origins of the German environmentalist movement began in Lower Saxony. This eventually led to the formation of the German Green Party in 1980. Christian Wulff is currently the Minister-President of Lower Saxony.