February 5th 2009,
Number 108




Dear Readers,

The Polish Information and Foreign Investment Agency invites for a conference which is to take place on February 9th (Monday) and will be devoted to projects conducted by the Agency in 2008 and PAIiIZ’s plans for 2009. For more detail go to the News section and in case you should not be able to attend the event, look for the meeting’s account in next week’s Newsletter.

This week we write about the UPM Raflatac investment project being realised close to the city of Wrocław and about the common initiative of the Italian Autogrill and Polish Impel. You will also find an article concerning the performance of the Wałbrzych SEZ in 2008.

At the end information about the success of the Warsaw-based Le Meridien Bristol hotel which ranked high in a list of 100 top hotels in the world.

Pleasant reading!

PAIiIZ’s editorial team

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PAIiIZ conference

PAIiIZ organises a conference to report on the Agency’s performance in the year 2008 and to present plans for the future. The meeting will take place at 11 a.m. on Monday, February 9th at the PAIiIZ Press Centre.

At the conference PAIiIZ President Mr Paweł Wojciechowski will present projects realised by the Agency in 2008 and the strategy for the Agency’s actions in 2009. Moreover, Vice President of The Gdańsk Institute for Market Economics Mr Bohdan Wyżnikiewicz will discuss results of a survey measuring clients’ satisfaction with services provided by PAIiIZ. At the end economist Janusz Jankowiak will provide a commentary. The conference may result especially attractive and interesting for representatives of entrepreneurs’ organisations, economists, delegates from special economic zones and Investor Assistance Centres as well as Polish and foreign journalists. (PAIiIZ)

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"Eurolider" contest

The Ministry of Regional Development opens a EUROLIDER 2009 contest. People eligible for the title recruit from among activists applying European Funds to effectively boost development of local communities.

The contest aims at selecting and rewarding social activists for their creativity, initiative and work. Candidates eligible for the title recruit from among people who managed to actively participate in projects geared towards local communities i.e. not only persons directly participating in projects’ realisation but also project concept designers or authors and co-authors of grant application forms. It is important that the realised project was granted financial support from EU funds i.e. was subsidized either from programmes realised in the frame of the National Development Strategy 2004-2006 or the National Cohesion Strategy 2007-2013.

Forms describing activists together with additional materials providing a better insight into the candidate’s activity in the form of films, photos, presentations or articles may be sent in by natural persons or institutions and organisations, provided the candidate agrees to participate in the contest.

There are three categories of potential candidates: administrative workers at the level of local authorities, NGO workers, co-workers and volunteers or simply people actively using EU funds to the benefit of local communities.

Applications may be sent in till March 6th. Certificates and training courses in EU funds acquisition are to be granted to the winners at the 2nd European Funds Forum which is to take place in Warsaw between May 7th-8th.

For more information about the contest, requirements and application form go to www.mrr.gov.pl and www.funduszeeuropejskie.gov.pl (Ministry of Regional Development)

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Finnish UPM Raflatac builds a factory near Wrocław

UPM Raflatac, forming part of one of the biggest forest products group, is building a factory in Biskupice Podgórne near Wrocław.

The project is to be realised within the territory of the Tarnobrzeg Special Economic Zone. After receiving a business activity permission, the company began construction in August 2007. The factory’s opening is planned for May this year.

UPM Raflatac factory in Biskupice Podgórne near Wrocław (Source: UPM Raflatac)

The factory is to be the most technologically advanced project of the company. In fact, the enterprise stands a good chance of becoming the most modern plant in the sector of self-adhesive label stock. From the very beginning UPM Raflatac assumed the project to be realised in a special economic zone. It was the very convenient location of Biskupice Podgórne, in the centre of Europe, with good transport connections, (including highways) facilitating output export as well as easy access to qualified cadre in Wrocław that helped the location outstrip other possible destinations.

UPM is to invest round 90 million EUR and is bound to employ 170 people. The new factory will manufacture paper-based label materials used in the food, cosmetics, household and logistics. (UPM Raflatac Polska)

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Impel and Autogrill to invest together

The first meeting concerning the companies’ co-operation focused on the project of a restaurant chain to be developed along the main Polish roads. The talks took place in the Italian Warsaw-based Embassy and were attended by the Undersecretary in the Ministry of Economy and the representatives of both firms.

Autogrill Polska, a company set up in result of an agreement signed by both investors, is to manage the project. By the end of 2010 11 restaurants are planed to have been opened alongside the major Polish roads. This year some 20 million PLN is to be invested. As a result 4 restaurants at Shell petrol stations located alongside the A1, A2 and A4 highways will be constructed. Moreover, the company considers the possibility of extending its field of investment by airports, railway and bus stations.

Vice minister Rafał Baniak said that Poland needs ambitious and big investment project which may play an important role in the era of economic slowdown.

Georgio Meinardi, director general at Autogrill Europe considers the Polish investment to be of key importance for his company - Poland is one of the best developed countries in the region what makes the country a perfect investment destination for our company. The country is also a natural connection between the West and East of Europe.

In turn, Impel’s president Grzegorz Dzik emphasises that his company opted for co-operation with Autogrill mainly due to the Italian partner’s know-how. The project should contribute to Impel’s development in the catering sector.
At the meeting, which was also attended by the new Italian ambassador to Poland, Aldo Mantovani.
Autogrill Group is an international provider of food & beverage and retail services for travellers. The Group operates in 42 countries and employs round 74 thousand people. (Ministry of Economy)

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  • Central Statistical Office: GDP grew by 4.8% in 2008

    Preliminary estimates of the Central Statistical Office (GUS) show that the GDP growth in 2008 accounted for 4.8% what coincides with the Government’s estimates. According to GUS preliminary estimates concerning GDP growth in 2008, the increase accounts for 4.8% y-o-y. The very same estimates were expected earlier by the Polish Government while the European Commission’s forecasts hovered at 5%. A slightly bigger increase was expected by some surveyed economists who tended to expect a 4.9% growth. Investment in 2008 rose by 7.9% in comparison to 2007 and consumption by 5.4% y-o-y. (GUS, TVN24.pl)

  • Public Opinion Research Centre (CBOS): Over half of Poles want euro

    52% of the surveyed Poles accepts the introduction of euro to Poland. Since 2007 the approval of Polish entry into the euro zone has been on the rise. 19% of the surveyed is of the opinion that euro zone accession will enable Slovakia to avoid negative effects of the global financial crisis. The survey “Current problems and events” was conducted by CBOS between January 9th-15th ,2009 on a group of 1089 adult Poles. (PAP)

  • Exchange rates (as of 05.02.2009):










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Wałbrzych SEZ reports on its 2008 performance

The Wałbrzych SEZ “Invest-Park” presented a summary of its 2008 performance and the activity of investors operating in the SEZ.

In 2008 the SEZ Management issued 37 business activity permissions for projects worth 2.6 billion PLN. The projects are bound to create 4,400 new workplaces. In 2008 new investors developed 146 ha of the SEZ. Among the companies investing in the SEZ for the first time it is worth to mention, among others, Cadbury Wedel (two permissions for projects worth 960 million PLN), manufacturer of chocolate products with two factories in Skarbierz and Wrocław; Advanced Diesel Particulate Filters (permission worth over 500 million PLN), a company developing its factory producing Diesel engine filters; Mahle Polska (118 million PLN), about to expand its factory manufacturing components for internal-combustion engines; Electrolux Poland (two permissions worth 115 million PLN), expanding its domestic appliance factories in Żarów and ¦widnica; Hoerbriger Automotive Sp. z o.o. (47.2 million PLN), producer of car transmission systems and comfort systems.

Last year witnessed also 12 companies completing the construction phase and initiating production in the Wałbrzych SEZ. On September 29th an official opening of the Toyota Manufacturing Poland gear boxes producing factory took place in Wałbrzych. The opening was attended by the deputy prime minister and economy minister Waldemar Pawlak and the under secretary in the Ministry of Economy Rafał Baniak. The factory is bound to expand the company’s production capacity by 120 thousand engines a year. To date, Toyota covered the project related investment expenses to the tune of 124 million EUR.

The Wałbrzych Special Economic Zone “Invest-Park” has sub zones in four regions i.e. in the Dolny ¦l±sk, Lubuskie, WIelkopolskie and Opolskie regions. Since the SEZ was established till the end of 2008 it issued 132 business activity permissions resulting in 83 companies operating in the SEZ. The companies invested 9.63 billion PLN and created 30 thousand workplaces. (WSSE “Invest-Park”)

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More buses exported from Poland

Last year Polish factories exported a joint number of 3321 buses, i.e. 28% more than a year earlier. According to a report by JMK Bus Markets Analyses, export of Polish buses has constantly been on the rise.

Source: MAN

Polish bus export has been on the rise since the year 2001 when the number of exported vehicles of the type accounted for 373. A year later the export volume amounted to 677, only to get better in 2003 (949) and the following years (903 in 2004, 1 616 in 2005 to finally reach 2 599 in 2007). Last year for the first time ever the number of buses sold abroad exceeded 3 000. At the moment Germany tops the list of major recipient markets with 895 buses bought in 2008. The United Arab Emirates rank second as a temporary trade area with 449 buses imported from Poland last year. The UK and Sweden follow with 309 and 266 vehicles. Export results achieved last year have much to do with the increased number of orders realised by the three major manufacturers of urban buses i.e. MAN, Scania and Solaris. It is MAN that has been on the leading position for the last three years. Last year the company sold round 1400 vehicles, mainly to Germany i.e.440 more than in 2007 what equals to a 48.51% increase in the company’s export performance. Among other MAN’s major trade markets there are the United Arab Emirates (224 Neoplan Centroliner buses) and Sweden. The company has not only been exporting completed vehicles but also bus frameworks and chassis for German and Turkish producers.

In 2008 Volvo came second with 725 buses exported mainly to Germany, Finland and Norway. The level of exported goods was similar to the one achieved by Volvo in 2007. Scania ranks third in the export ranking. The company closed 2008 with 559 buses sold abroad, what equals to a 40.5% increase in exported goods when compared to the volume of products sold in 2007. Among Scania’s major target markets there are the UK, Sweden and France. The Słupsk-based company began also exporting chassis to Russia and is thus the only Polish bus exporter trading with the country. For Solaris Bus & Coach, classified 4th in the ranking, 2008 resulted very successful in that the company managed to export 544 buses achieving thus a 48% sales increase y-o-y. (JMK Bus Markets A0nalyses)

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Warsaw Bristol Hotel among the best in the world

The Warsaw Le Meridien Bristol hotel results to be the only Polish hotel classified on a 100 top world hotels list published by the American monthly Travel&Leisure.

The Bristol Hotel was designed between 1899 and 1901 by Władysław Marconii and Stanisław Grochowicz (Source: Wikipedia)

The ranking, organised by American monthly Travel&Leisure, derives data from opinion polls conducted among its readers. The surveyed were asked to evaluate, among other things, services providedby the hotels, their catering offer, décor and location.

The Warsaw-based Le Merdien Bristol obtained 89 out of 100 possible points and ranked 57th among one hundred best hotels in the world and classified 11th among the 50 best European facilities of the kind. Interestingly enough, the hotel managed even to outstrip the Paris Ritz Hotel which was placed on the 18th position for Europe and 82nd in the world.

Once again the Singita Sati Sand & Kruger National Park from the Republic of South Africa came top of the ranking with 97 out of 100 possible points.
, Życie Warszawy on-line)

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Economic Promotion Department, tel: (+48 22) 334 99 49, fax: (+48 22) 334 99 99,
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