The town is the capital of the Pays de la Loire region (approx. 3.1 million inhabitants) as well as the Loire-Atlantique Department. The city’s economic activities are mainly based on the service, industry and trade sector. Nantes offers a wide choice of cultural entertainment aimed at striking a balance between economic and technological progress on the one hand, and quality of life on the other, although the close proximity to the sea also contributes greatly to the attractiveness of the place. At the moment the twinning partnership focuses on cooperating effectively and exchanging experiences both in the field of public administration (social welfare, senior citizens, young people, small children, women, environment, department of agriculture and forestry) and in the field of culture, sports, schools and clubs. The formal town twinning agreement between Nantes and Saarbrücken was officially signed on 27 April 1965.