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Poland: the new promised land of (not only) German business


Poland: the new promised land of (not only) German business

According to the magazine Markt und Mittelstand, there are already almost 9,500 companies in Poland with at least one German owner. In recent months it has been reported that a logistics center of the German shipping giant Otto is being built in Ilawa and that the Miele group is moving its factory from Gütersloh to Ksawerowo. French tire manufacturer Michelin announced that it would move its customer service center from Karlsruhe to Poland.

According to a 2023 study by the Federation of German Industry. 16% of medium-sized industrial companies have shifted jobs and part of their production abroad. Another 30% are considering or finalizing plans to emigrate. The number of German companies in Poland will continue to grow. In Germany, energy prices are too high, demand is too low, there is too much bureaucracy and there is too little functioning infrastructure, the Rhine-Elbe media point out[1].

A few months ago, the German magazine Focus reported that Poland’s main advantages are its infrastructure, low bureaucratic barriers and well-educated specialists. Added to this are very good operating conditions and strong support from the boards of special economic zones.

Polish factories are no longer mere assembly plants, limited to performing a series of repetitive tasks and skillfully unpacking and repackaging complex parts. The 1990s are a distant memory. Piotr Arak, chief economist at Velo Bank, pointed out in April in Rzeczpospolita that the key factors determining Poland’s investment attractiveness are first and foremost its high and growing productivity, talent pool, good infrastructure and access to the EU’s single market[2].

However, it is worth noting that, according to the expert quoted in the article, skilled workers in our country are much more motivated to develop and show more interest in the economic success of their companies, which is reflected, for example, in a greater willingness to take initiative. He used a very interesting formulation – that an employee in Poland feels personally responsible and affected if something goes wrong in the company[3]

The effects don’t have to look too long or too far. In 2023, the volume of foreign investment in Poland will increase to 3.6% of GDP. Good results will also be seen in 2024.

I am confident that the reorientation of global supply and production chains that is taking place before our eyes will benefit Poland – emphasizes Iwona Gramatyka. – We are a safe haven for capital and investments. We have an ever-improving and more efficient infrastructure, and our industries – especially those focused on cooperation with major global players – have for years been characterized by exceptional flexibility. It is imperative that we seize this opportunity and become a new industry leader in Europe – argues Iwona Gramatyka.

In mid-April, Switzerland’s Neue Zürcher Zeitung reported that forecasts for the Polish economy at the beginning of this year are undoubtedly better than those of our western neighbors. After an unimpressive 0.2% growth in the previous year, the Polish Economic Institute expects growth of 2.8% in 2024. The German economy slipped into recession in 2023, and expectations for this year have been revised down to 0.2%[4]. Does this mean that Poland will now replace Germany?

[1] https://www.nzz.ch/report-und-debatte/polen-lockt-deutsche-industrie-an-ld.1825774, dostęp: 7.05.2024.

[2] https://www.rp.pl/opinie-ekonomiczne/art40106361-piotr-arak-polska-na-radarze-inwestorow, dostęp: 7.05.2024.

[3] https://www.focus.de/finanzen/news/den-deutschen-unternehmern-reicht-es-so-viel-besser-laeuft-es-am-standort-polen-die-deutsche-arbeitsmoral-ist-kaputt_id_259711772.html, dostęp: 7.05.2024.

[4] https://www.nzz.ch/report-und-debatte/polen-lockt-deutsche-industrie-an-ld.1825774, dostęp: 7.05.2024.

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