October 29th, 2009,
Number 146




Entrepreneurs more optimistic

September this year saw the Polish Information and Foreign Investment Agency (PAIiIZ) carried out the 3rd edition of the investment climate survey. The survey was conducted amongst members of bilateral chambers of commerce. Over one third of the surveyed companies consider Poland’s investing conditions to be good or very good. The overall state of the investment climate in Poland was evaluated at 3.3 points on a 5 point scale.

In previous years the assessment hovered at around 3.1 points. The survey focused on three aspects which shape Poland’s general investment atmosphere i.e. macroeconomic environment, infrastructure conditions and quality of state institutions. Respondents came from companies which have been running businesses in Poland. 40% of those surveyed have been present on the Polish market from 1 to 5 years.

The size of the Polish market constitute the biggest advantage of the country’s investment climate. As many as 76% of the surveyed investors rated this factor as good or very good for the general climate. Similarly, the size of the EU market played an important part and was positively assessed by 76% of the respondents.

This year’s survey shows that Poland is positively evaluated in terms of the accessibility to materials, resources, components and qualified personnel. Optimistic assessment trends could be seen in the evaluation of the country’s political stability which two years ago ranked among the worst assessed factors influencing investment climate. This aspect was the most highly appreciated by companies which have been operating in Poland for a fairly short time i.e. less than 5 years. In comparison to the years 2007 and 2008, this year also saw investors more optimistic regarding tax structure and its consequent financial obligations. This was appreciated by enterprises which hire over 50 people where the Corporate Income Tax rates were particularly positively assessed.

Janusz Jankowiak - economist, Polish Business Roundtable; Michael Dembiński - representative of the British Polish Chamber of Commerce, Sławomir Majman - PAIiIZ President, Agata Mężyńska - Director of the PAIiIZ Economic Information Department (Source: PAIiIZ)

There was no significant shift in infrastructure assessment. In this aspect, investors’ opinions stayed close to last year's road, utilities and telecommunications ratings. It was the road infrastructure which, as in previous years, turned out to be the weakest factor. Also the licence-granting process and VAT-connected issues receive a less favourable rating. Likewise, the clarity and coherence level of tax and public procurement regulations were deemed unsatisfactory. Nevertheless, when compared to previous editions, both categories recorded improved assessment ratings.

The 2009 investment climate analysis demonstrates entrepreneurs investing in Poland in a moderately positive mood. Despite the current global economic situation, all areas covered by the survey received better reviews than in previous years.

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5th Annual Outsourcing Forum

Roadshow Polska in co-operation with the Polish Information and Foreign Investment Agency, Ernst & Young, Forbes and the Polish Chamber of Commerce invite to the 5th edition of the “Annual Outsourcing Forum - Poland as European knowledge process outsourcing centre” which will take place on January 19th, 2010 in the Warsaw Hyatt Hotel.

The leading topics will include knowledge process outsourcing, outsourcing of the state functions, barriers for BPO development from corporation perspective, Poland in BPO sector in three years and barriers for BPO development in Poland from the perspective of self-government, government, university and industry.

This event is a cyclical consequence of previous Outsourcing Forums - Poland as European Service Hub conferences which enjoyed enormous popularity and won a circle of loyal participants. The objective of the Forum is to promote Poland as a modern centre of BPO services as well as to present and discuss the latest trends in the outsourcing market, both in Poland and worldwide. We will analyze how the situation in the financial markets worldwide influenced BPO sector and what perspective of development BPO investments face currently in Poland. During the meeting Forbes awards will be announced.

The event is geared towards investors and enterprise executives already active in the field of outsourcing and those who consider implementation of the form in their business strategy.

The conference is thought as a perfect experience and opinion exchange platform and will offer a possibility to establish new, interesting business contacts which may inspire future co-operation. Organisers hope the Forum will help attract foreign direct investment in the BPO sector.

To find out more go to www.roadshowpolska.pl or contact the organisers at: info@roadshowpolska.pl, conferences@roadshowpolska.pl, or phone  00 4822/ 498 92 77, 004822/ 357 09 77. (Roadshow Polska)

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Poland- Japan Forum 2009

"Regional Forum: Poland - Japan 2009" was held in the capital of Japan from October 8th to 10th, 2009. The aim of the Forum was to promote regional co-operation between the two countries.

The Forum gathered together heads of regional self-governments and representatives of Polish and Japanese business institutions as well as people from organisations responsible for economic, cultural and tourism co-operations. The event was organised by the Embassy of the Republic of Poland in Tokyo in co-operation with the Japanese Institute of Foreign Investments. The meeting coincided with the celebrations of the 90th anniversary of the Polish-Japanese diplomatic relations establishment.

The first day of the Forum was devoted to consultations concerning regional co-operation between Poland and Japan. The organisers wanted to familiarise the Japanese guests with the rich Polish offer and that is why panellists came from different administration levels and various regions - there were representatives of the Polish Embassy, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, the Polish Tourist Organisation as well as delegates from the Podkarpacie and Zachodniopomorskie regions.
The second day of the Forum focused on presentations delivered by delegates from the Polish regions and special economic zones. A series of multimedia presentations was addressed to representatives of the Japanese business community, including managers of largest chambers of commerce, as well as entrepreneurs who consider locating their investment projects in the centre of Europe.

The seminar was dominated by presentations of five regions i.e. the regions of Kujawsko-Pomorskie, Małopolskie, Podkarpackie, ¦l±sk and West Pomerania and two special economic zones - Euro-Park Wisłosan and Euro-Park Mielec.
An informal meeting organized in a prestigious Ebisu Garden Place concluded the first edition of the Polish-Japanese Regional Forum. The interesting and varied schedule of the event attracted thousands of Japanese visitors who were provided with key information on Poland’s tourist and cultural offer. (Investor Service Centre in West Pomerania, The region of Małopolska)

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Poland - the best in Europe

According to the European Commission Poland is the clear leader in the implementation of the European Regional Development Fund and the Cohesion Fund for the years 2007-2013. Poland has submitted reimbursement applications of the highest value amongst all the EU member states.

Polish payment applications in the frame of the European Regional Development Fund constitute a substantial majority of all the applications. As of October 2nd 2009, the European Commission received indirect payment applications of the total value of EUR 645mln. Applications from Poland accounted for EUR 514mln.

Along with the payments already received by Poland, the value of indirect payment applications submitted to the European Commission amounts to more than 912 million EUR. In terms of the general value of periodic payment applications, Poland takes the first place in the implementation of the two Funds before Germany (EUR 756mln) and Lithuania ( EUR 429mln). Further positions were taken by: Greece (over EUR 249mln), Hungary (around EUR 283 mln), Latvia (around EUR 179mln). Estonia (EUR 138.6mln), France (EUR 122 mln) and Portugal (over EUR 119 mln).

Poland ranks first also among the countries which take advantage of the funds allocated in the frame of the Cohesion Fund. The joint value of the funds transferred by the EC in the form of periodical payments and payment applications in the frame of the Cohesion Fund reached over EUR 186 mln. The second position was taken by Lithuania (over EUR 95mln) and followed by Slovenia (around EUR 80mln), Hungary (over EUR 65mln), Greece, (over EUR 35mln), Latvia ((EUR 30 mln) and Estonia (around EUR 12mln).(Ministry of Regional Development)

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New Nestlé investment

A new Nestlé production facility was officially opened in Kalisz on October 21st, 2009. The concern produces here under the Winiary brand instant dishes, sauces, mayonnaise and soups. The CHF 16.7 mln worth factory is expected to be finished by May 2010.

The food manufacturing Winiary factory was established in the 1940s. In 1995 the facility was taken over by the Swiss Nestlé which for the last 15 years has made numerous important investments in the plant. The new building forms part of this long-term strategy.

Opening of the Winiary plant building site in Kalisz. (Source: Nestle)

The fact that the factory expands is not only a very good signal for the company itself as it shows its dynamic development but transmits also a positive information to the local community - says Markus Froehlich, director of the Winiary plant. - The expansion will enable us to hire new people and thus help reduce unemployment in the region. The expansion project will be realised in co-operation with local suppliers. (Nestlé )

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New investor in the Police Technology Park

„Partner Stocznia” and INFRAPARK - company managing the Police Technology Park concluded an agreement concerning a 1.3ha investment lot. Investor plans to use buildings located on the lot to run steel structures construction process.

Within the next four years the company will invest around PLN 2 mln. Production process is estimated to start in 2011. At the moment the company hires 40 people and, should the number of steel structure orders go up especially in the West of Europe, the investor plans to increase employment up to 100 persons in the next 3 years. 

 On the recently purchased lot "Partner Stocznia” wants to manufacture pipelines and other types of steel structures.

„Partner Stocznia” is not the first company which invests in the Police Technology Park. Among other investors there are: Prio Agro Industries, Polchar, Lokal Chemical Industrial, Pogard Sinkos and Partner Sp.j. (Infrapark Police)

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  • Exchange rates (as of 29.10.2009):









Source: www.nbp.pl

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Podlasie Brand of the Year 2009

The contests started on October 1st. For the 6th time the contest council board and all the residents of the region will select the best Taste, Place, Product and Enterprise of the region.

Marshall of the Podlasie region invites everybody to send in applications for the 2009 edition of the contest. The contests is open to entrepreneurs, local producers, artists, self governments, institutions and all people who managed initiatives which help build a positive image of the region. Participants will be evaluated in four different categories i.e. Taste, Place, Enterprise and Product.

Winners receive a special "Oak Leaf” statuette and a refund of the winning ideas promotion costs. Awarded projects are allowed to use the contest visual logo and motto and are included in numerous promotion activities undertaken by the regional Marshal Office. Deadline for applications is January 31st 2010.

For online registration visit the website of the Podlasie Marshal Office. To find out more contact the Marshal Office Promotion Department. (Wrota Podlasia)

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Entrepreneurs about the sector of SME

Small and medium-sized enterprises want to develop - shows a report by the Analyses and Forecasting Department at the Ministry of Economy. More enterprises declare eagerness to start new investments and create jobs. Also a greater number of the enterprises expect their revenues to increase.

The investment forecast index has risen for the first time since 2006 (although it still continues on a low level). Enterprises have been allocating financial resources primarily to vehicles, equipment and furniture. The most eager to invest were companies providing transport services (over 90%) and companies active in the services sector (70%).

The survey showed that entrepreneurs perceive the economic slowdown experienced in the first half of the year as a temporary situation. Numerous companies operating in bigger cities declared not to have felt any signs of the changing economic climate. In comparison to the previous editions of the survey, increased also the percentage of entrepreneurs expecting improvement in conditions for economic activity management. Every 10th owner of a micro enterprise expects revenues to grow. Similarly, more respondents managing SMEs count rather on a revenue increase than a drop. Prognoses concerning the next six months are more optimistic than forecasts published in the former survey.

Despite the current downturn, numerous entrepreneurs still declare to have hired new employees. Every 10th micro enterprise and every 4th small enterprise had or has job vacancies available.

Prevailing number of exporters (around 3/4 declared to have done settlements in euro) expect euro adoption to have a positive influence on their company. In the group of non-exporters positive attitude toward the currency change was expresses by 20% of the respondents.

The first half of the year saw around 2/3 of the companies use services provided by business support institutions. Among small and medium-sized companies it was economic consolations, human resources selection and recruitment, law counselling and various promotion forms that resulted especially popular.

The survey has been conducted by the Ministry of Economy twice a year since 1998. Its aim is to monitor changes taking place in the SME sector, observe major entrepreneurs' problems and to evaluate the current economic policy. (Ministry of Economy)

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UNCTAD reports on ICT sector

According to the Information Economy Report 2009: Trends and Outlook in Turbulent Times, Poland hosted the biggest number of FDI projects in the field of IT.

According to UNCATD, from among the IT projects realised in Poland between 2003 and 2008, 21 classified in the Customer Contact Centres category (847 projects of the kind realised in the world, 11 in the Czech Republic and 11 in Hungary) and 37 in the category of Shared Services Centres (481 projects of the kind realised in the world including 20 in the Czech Republic and 25 in Hungary).

Due to high mobile phones market penetration dynamics Poland ranked 5th among developed countries and 7th in the world because of the ICT goods export growth in the years 1998-2007.

The report investigated global trends in the ICT sector in developed countries. Special attention was directed to the influence the global economic crisis exerted on the IT sector. (UNCTAD)

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Intelligent System of Speech Recognition and Transformation into Text MagicScribeMedical

After 4 years of work experts from the Wrocław University of Technology and Polish Unikkon Integraf created an Intelligent System of Speech Recognition and Transformation into Text - MagicScribeMedical. This is the first solution of the kind meant for the medical industry - it recognises medical vocabulary, medicine names and medical procedures.

MagicScribeMedical recognises dictated text and converts it into a written form. The text is then saved as a written document in a file form on computer disc. The system has two work modes: direct dictation of a description (e.g. during a check-up) or a transformation of previously recorded digital files (e.g. into a dictaphone or other portable digital device). The system’s capacity accounts for 160 words a minute i.e. 3 times the speed of a person typing on a computer keyboard.

The company promotes the system with a slogan "You name it, we write it". The recognition and transformation takes place in real time with 98% efficiency - ensures the vice president of Unikkon Integral, Daniela Grabowska. Ms Grabowsa adds that the system draws heavily on the so called Branch Speech Corpus. The company has access to Speech Corpuses in the field of diagnostics, among others, in RTG, USG and tomography. Corpuses for other diagnostics types are under construction and should be completed by the end of the year making  thus the complete speech body for the medical industry available.

The aim of the system is to streamline and accelerate patient servicing in medical centres and to improve doctors' working conditions with simultaneous labour cost reduction.

Creators of the system emphasise that MagicScribeMedical does not make mistakes. The system learns correct spelling and consequently should be able to recognise the dictated words with precision equalling 98%. Authors plan to implement the system in big medical centres. The system may shorten the time devoted to medical documentation what may result in measurable financial benefits.

The Research & Developemnt Centre Unikkon Integral plans to create similar systems for use in other fields of life. At the moment prototype versions of a similar solution is available for public administration. The current stage of this project development indicates that within a year we will be able to create a system enabling users to send mobile text messages with the use of their voice. - informs Daniela Grabowska. (PAP - Science in Poland)

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Economic Promotion Department, tel: (+48 22) 334 98 15, fax: (+48 22) 334 99 99,
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Polish Infomation and Foreign Investment Agency www.paiz.gov.pl