April 2nd 2009,
Number 116




Dear Readers,

This week you will find an account of the PAIiIZ conference on "Renewable energies: the chance for Polish entrepreneurs". In the News section we inform about the European Economic Congress 2009 to be held in Katowice. Moreover, information about further reports positively assessing the condition of the Polish economy.

Pleasant reading!

PAIiIZ’s editorial team

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Conference "Renewable energies: the chance for Polish entrepreneurs"

The conference "Renewable energies: the chance for Polish entrepreneurs" took place on March 31st at the PAIiIZ Press Centre. The aim of the conference was to present possibilities of investment support in the filed of renewable energy and a discussion on the sector’s development prospects in Poland.

Renewable Energy Sources have been constantly gaining importance in the Polish economy, especially in the context of energy source diversification. At the moment only 6% of electric energy in the country has been generated using renewable energy sources. However, EU directives specified in the Polish Energy Policy until 2030 assume the country will have produced 15% of energy from renewable sources by the year 2020 and 20% by 2030. Establishing the new limits inevitably entails both an increase in production powers and a dynamic development of transmission grids in the coming years. Production of the equipment and systems suitable for generating energy from renewable sources not only involves an introduction of highly advanced production processes but imposes high environmental protection standards and requires highly qualified and trained cadre to work in the sector. That is why projects in the sector inevitably entail high investment costs. A proper promotion of the issue and an effective incentive system geared towards projects focused on the development of the sector are inevitable to kick start the industry in Poland. Governmental strategies concerning the future promotion were presented by Mr Sebastian Stępnicki, a representative of the Ministry of Economy.

Speakers at the conference. From the left - Leszek Katkowski PhD, Magdalena Mielczarska,
Sławomir Majman, Sebastian Stępnicki

Undoubtedly funds from the European Union, especially from the Operational Programme - Infrastructure and Environment (IaE OP) and the know-how transfer from foreign companies may substantially contribute to the development of the sector in Poland. Ms Magdalena Mielczarska-Rogulska from the Institute for Fuels and Renewable Energy discussed ways of obtaining subsidies for this kind of projects from EU funds. Information on other subsidy sources in the field were presented by Mr Leszek Katkowski PhD who represented the National Fund for Environmental Protection and Water Management.

Poland has a considerable potential for obtaining energy from renewable sources e.g. water power stations which have never been fully used, rich biomass resources in the form of forestry and agriculture waste and biogas. Geothermal water, a highly sought natural resource for electrical power generation may be found under round 80% of the country’s territory. Also solar energy may prove very useful in the future. The sector is likely to experience a successful development also due to its strategic location and easy access to qualified cadre. Importance of the factors was confirmed in the presentations by Ms Agnieszka Myszkowska from the Office of the Marshal of the Zachodniopomorskie region and Mr Andrzej Zabiegliński, the Vice President of the Katowice Special Economic Zone i.e. regions actively interested in attracting projects from this sector.

Mr Maciej Grzybowski from Glasfiber, a manufacturer of fibreglass blades for wind turbines presented a case study of a Goleniów-based company. Prospects of the sector’s development in the era of global economic crisis were analysed by Mr Christopher Siemieński from Frost & Sullivan.

The conference was chaired by Mr Sławomir Majman, member of the PAIiIZ board of management. In fact, a growing interest on the part of foreign investors in the sector has been observed for the last few years. In the years 2004-2007 the interested focused mainly on biofuels (7 projects). Starting from 2008 PAIiIZ helped manage 12 projects in the sector which mainly considered production of energy generating equipment from sewage treatment and wind power stations. While the joint value of the projects is estimated at 1.5bn EUR, the number of workplaces generated by the ventures reached some 500.

We inform also that the Polish Agency for Enterprise Development (PARP) in co-operation with the Ministry of the Environment and the Trade and Investment Promotion Section at the Polish Embassy in Shanghai organise a trade mission to China between April 27th and May 2nd. The mission is geared towards entrepreneurs active in the sectors of environmental protection, renewable energy and sewage treatment and forms part of the Polish EXPO 2010 preparations.

For more information contact:

Aleksandra Ptak
EXPO Section
Polish Agency for Enterprise Development (PARP)

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Register your company at one counter

Amendments to the Act on Freedom of Economic Activity enter into force on March 31st. Thanks to the changes entrepreneurs will be able to register a company at a one single counter or suspend the economic activity for an unspecified period.

The majority of procedures introduced in the recent amendments to the Act came into force on March 7th this year. The most important change introduced on March 31st consists in the possibility of an integrated application for company registration which should be dealt at a one single place.

Till recently potential entrepreneurs had to visit a number of offices and apply separately in all of them what also entailed separate registration fees. Now all the necessary information is collected and included in one application form. It is now the task of the office workers to further process the data included in the application i.e. send the information to offices dealing with statistics and social insurance. Among the most important novelties ranks the fact that natural persons are now allowed to start business activity from the very moment after submitting an application without the need to wait for the company to be registered.

Another important change consists in the right to suspend business activity for an unspecified period. The right may prove especially advantageous for small entrepreneurs operating in tourism and catering who will now be able to avoid losses in the off season period. (PAP)

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Deloitte’s online conference: “Modern Services Centres”

Deloitte in co-operation with the Polish Information and Foreign Investment Agency and the “Rzeczpospolita” daily organises a free, interactive online conference devoted to the topic of “Modern Services Centres - EU funds usage and public help.“ The event will be held on April 6th at 10 a.m.

For the year 2009 the Ministry of Economy has near 96 mln EUR to distribute among entrepreneurs who plan to open or develop a shared services centre, an IT or R&D centre. Applications for realisation of projects in the frame of the Innovative Economy - Operational Programme (IE OP) measure 4.5.2 will be taken starting from mid May. Entrepreneurs may use public subsidies available in Special Economic Zones and companies with foreign capital may additionally apply for governmental grants.

Experts from PAIiIZ, Deloitte and the “Rzeczpospolita” daily will present the most important changes and news from the field of national and EU subsidy acquisition for projects connected with the creation of a variety of modern services centres. The specialists will advise potential beneficiaries on how to optimise the volume of prospective subsidies (including potential tax exemptions). There will also be a possibility to get an insight into experiences other companies had in obtaining subsidies for this kind of projects.

Discussions will be chaired by: Iwona Chojnowska-Haponik, Director of the Foreign Investment Department PAIiIZ; Michał Turczyk, manager at Deloitte and Urszula Mirończuk, from „Rzeczpospolita”.

The meeting will have a form of a webcast - an online discussion panel distributed over the Internet using streaming media technology. Participants will be able not only to listen to the presentations but also to take an active part in the meeting e.g. by asking questions. The meeting is free of charge and will be held in Polish.

To register, visit:


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The European Economic Congress 2009 in Katowice

Between April 15th - 17th Katowice will host a congress devoted to issues concerning the economic future of the European Union. The most prominent figures from the European world of politics, business and science will discuss the global economic situation and ways of tackling climate changes.

Round 30 panel discussions, business meetings and informal talks concerning the shape of European economy will be held during the 3 days of the congress.
Among the most prominent figures who confirmed their participation in the event there are: Mikuláš Dzurinda - Slovak Prime Minister in 1998-2006, Andris Piebalgs - EU Commissioner for Energy at the European Commission, Janez Potočnik - European Commissioner for Science and Research and representatives of the Polish Government. The congress will also be attended by delegates from local governments and regions, presidents of companies, representatives of management board of Special Economic Zones and chambers of commerce.

The event enjoys an honorary patronage by the Polish Information and Foreign Investment Agency. The event's agenda is available on: www.eec2009.eu The major organizer of the event is the Polish Association for Entrepreneurship Promotion, publisher of the economic monthly magazine Nowy Przemysł (New Industry) in co-operation with: Górnośląski Związek Metropolitalny, the city of Katowice and the region of Śląsk. Participation in the congress is free of charge.

For more details and registration terms visit: www.eec2009.eu

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  • Main interest rate in Poland - 3.75%

    Last week the National Bank of Poland (NBP) cut the rates by 0.25 percentage points to the lowest level on record. Further cuts are highly probable what is expected to make it easier for companies and entrepreneurs to obtain credits. (www.nbp.pl)

  • Public Opinion Research Centre (CBOS): 53% of Poles for EUR adoption

    Public opinion continues positive about euro adoption. While over half of the population of Poland i.e. 53% is in favour of the adoption of the one single currency, two fifths (38%) is against - results from the CBOS survey conducted in March. The survey emphasises the fact that the majority (69%) of those in favour of the currency want the adoption to take place as soon as possible: in the years 2012-2013. The survey was conducted between March 4thand 10th on a group of 979 adult Poles selected at random. (PAP)

  • Unemployment slightly on the rise

    February 2009 saw a slight increase in the number of the unemployed and the unemployment rate. Unemployment accounted for 10.9% i.e. 0.4% more than in January yet still less than a year ago in February 2008 when the unemployment rate equalled 11.3%. The number of the unemployed this February in comparison to January rose for the first time in the last five years.

  • Exchange rates (as of 02.04.2009):










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Pomerania: 170 mln PLN for innovations and science

170 mln PLN from EU funds for local governments and universities in Pomerania.

The money may be allocated to projects developing academic infrastructure and innovative facilities. Value of the projects realised thanks to the subsidies reaches 325 mln PLN. On March 26th managers of 14 projects were handed out decisions allocating them subsidies by Mr Jan Kozłowski, Marshal of the Mazowsze region. The projects, to be realised in the frame of the region’s Operational Programme stand a very good chance of boosting the region’s competitiveness and developing regional entrepreneurship in the field of innovations. The biggest subsidy to the tune of 52 mln PLN is to be allocated to Gdynia. The city will invest the money in the development of the Pomerania Science and Technology Park and the creation of a Centre for Creative Enterprise.

Subsidies were also granted to projects of: the creation of an enterprise incubator in Gdańsk, an Education and Development Centre in Chojnice and a Science and Technology Park in Kwidzyn.

The biggest universities located in the region of Tri-city will also benefit from the European funds. Agreements are to be signed in the near future. Projects are expected to be realised within two years time.

Jan Kozłowski, the region’s Marshal informed that contests organised in order to distribute the funds already attracted as many as 1235 projects jointly worth 3.5 bn PLN. Experts selected 400 applications worth 1.7 bn PLN. (PAP)

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Warsaw to issue Euro-bonds

The city plans to obtain over 1 bn EUR and allocate the money to realise investment projects worth jointly round 6 bn PLN.

Tomasz Andryszczyk, spokesmen for the Warsaw City Council told IAR that Warsaw authorities opted for the new way of obtaining money in order to cover costs and help finance investments. The decision results from the high assessment the city received from the Moody's rating agency. Good rating makes the city a realisable partner that is why the bonds stand a good chance of attracting interest.

Moreover, the Ministry of Economy decided to exempt bond purchaser from profits tax in order to help the city attract buyers. (IAR)

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The Economist: Poland to have the highest GDP growth in Europe

This year Poland is bound to be the only European country to experience GDP growth - say experts from “The Economist”. The country ranked 6th among economies in the world.

According to the Economist Intelligence Unit (EIU), Poland may expect economic growth at around 0.7% and is bound to decidedly outshine other European countries in this respect. Positive GDP in 2009 will become a thing not numerous countries will be able to boast about. EIU’s experts expect China to have the highest GDP growth i.e. 6%. India comes second in the ranking with the expected 5% GDP rise and Egypt closes the list of top courtiers with prospects of a 3.9% GDP growth.

EIU’s estimates the Polish GDP should gain pace in 2010 to reach 2.2%. Moreover, the weekly publishes data concerning the country’s industrial production which fell in February by 14.9%. Yet the slump results less sharp when compared with the drop observed in the Czech Republic (23.3%) or Japan (30.8%). (The Economist)

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Polish Confederation of Private Employers Lewiatan on economic tendencies

PKPP Lewiatan presents its macroeconomics expertise for 2008 and the two months of 2009 - Business Index. The analysis indicates the Polish economy to be one of the few to maintain a positive growth rate.

In the analysis Lewiatan indicated both the negative and positive tendencies observed in the business activities undertaken by Polish private employers. Among the negative trends there are: slowdown in income growth in 2008 to 11%, rapid cost increase (by 13.3%) and the slump in net profitability of the enterprises to 3.3% (a fall from 5% in 2007) what effectively reduces their capacity of accumulation and investment.

While presenting the Business Index, Ms Małgorzata Starczewska-Krzysztoszek PhD, Director of the PKPP Lewiatan Department of Economic Analysis emphasised that the years 2004-2007 helped the Polish enterprises generate profits which may now enable the companies to perform successfully in the more complex economic situation even for the next 1.5 year.

As for the positive trends the Index enumerates: considerable net profits generated by the enterprises (63 bn PLN), lack of payment problems, better stock and receivables management and a high cash liquidity (indicator 33.3%).
The business index has not changes in March year on year in relation to February this year and the quarterly index fell by 2% to reach the level of 40 points.

- These are the lowest index rates in six years - claims Mr Stanisław Kubielas, Lewiatan’s expert. - However, the fact that the annual and quarterly indexes equalled suggest the economic slowdown has already reached its climax. The six-month index is one point higher.

Mr Bohdan Wyżnikiewicz from the Gdańsk Institute for Market Economics emphasised the need to judge the current situation in a reasonable way especially due to the fact that data presented in the current situation often tends to lack stable foundations. Wyżnikiewicz claims the economic analyses should not focus exclusively on economic data but rather observe trends as processes developing in time and intrinsically interconnected with a variety of factors. (PKPP Lewiatan, Wnp.pl)

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PZL Mielec: the first Polish cockpit for Black Hawk

PZL Mielec presented the first cockpit for Black Hawk produced in Mielec. 

Photo: PZL Mielec

The official presentation of the product coincided with the 2nd anniversary of the Sikorsky’s Corp.appearance in Mielec. It has been two years since Sikorsky, forming part of the United Technologies Corporation, has taken over the former aviation company PZL Mielec.

The presentation was attended by the cadre and management board of PZL Mielec, representatives of Sikorsky Aircraft, numerous guests representing Polish and American authorities as well as delegates of the local and regional delegates. All the guests had the chance to see the helicopter’s cockpit and the modernised shop floor.

- The company’s cadre enthusiastically took up the new challenge. That is why today we may see the effect of their work - the first, from the two hundred cockpits for Black Hawk to be produced here, leaves the assembly line. – said Janusz Zakręcki, President and General Director of PZL Mielec.

During the official presentation Carey Bond, Vice President at Sikorsky Aircraft declared: - Modernisation and streamlining of the company’s production, especially in the field of security and work conditions do confirm our long-term engagement in the development of the Polish labour market and the Polish Aviation Valley. Bond added: - We wait for further presentations of cockpits produced in Poland which will satisfy the expectations of our international clients, including the American army.

The first cockpit is to be installed in the S-70i Black Hawk helicopter, the first of the type which is to be entirely manufactured in Mielec. The second cockpit model, to be completed this month, will be sent to the USA and installed in the UH-60M Black Hawk designed for the American army.

Recently the Mielec-based facilities employed 100 aviation assembly specialists. The company declares further development of the production. Next year Poles are expected to create a prototype of a new generation, light BH helicopter. While testing flights for the new BH S70 helicopter are panned for the end of 2010 in the USA, Mielec will be getting ready to start a mass production of the aircraft.

PZL Mielec is the biggest Polish aircraft manufacturer. M28 "Skytruck", M28B "Bryza" a water patrol aircraft and M18 "Dromader" belong to the company’s flagship products. It provides aircraft components to, among others, Pratt & Whitney Canada, Spirit Aerosystems (the former BAE), SAAB Aviation and GKN Aerospace.

The takeover by Sikorsky/United Technologies Corp substantially improved the company’s financial situation which for the first time in the last few years managed to generate profits. Today the number of employees in the company reaches 1700.

Sikorsky Aircraft Corp., with a headquarter in Stratford, Connecticut, USA, is a world leader in the design, manufacture and service of military and commercial helicopters. (PZL Mielec, Rzeczpospolita)

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