Economy, Domestic Economy

Poland Promoting “Go Iran” Program

Poland Promoting  “Go Iran” Program  Poland Promoting  “Go Iran” Program

The Polish economy, one of the fastest-growing in Europe, posted very good results last year. According to statistics, GDP growth reached 3.4% in 2014. Our economic results in 2014 and the first half of 2015 indicate a gradual improvement in sentiment and offer good prospects for the future. All of this makes foreign investors and analysts perceive Poland as an attractive place to locate projects and a stable trade partner.

I am therefore particularly pleased that we are starting a new chapter in Polish-Iranian contacts as I hope for effective economic cooperation. We remember the great popularity of Polish products in Iran in the early 20th century, including furniture (such as Polish chairs that remain popular until this day), cut glass or metal products. In the early 21st century the Polish economy is still renowned for its furniture, metal products and decorative materials, as well as a number of other industries.

International research centres predict that Poland’s economic growth rate will remain stable in 2015. Forecasts by most economists show that the Polish economy is poised to grow at a pace of more than 3% for the second year in a row. Poland’s current position in world trade is a consequence of its economic transformation that started in the 1990s, and its subsequent accession to the European Union.

This has had a significant impact on Poland’s trade growth. One of the key factors that influence the condition of the Polish economy is export growth. According to statistics, exports went up by 7% to more than €165.8 billion in 2014. In the same period, imports increased by 7.3% to almost €168.4 billion.

Polish companies increasingly often decide to expand beyond Europe and are successful there. Businesses representing the IT, mining, food, construction, furniture, chemical and financial sectors have gained increased prominence on the global market.

We support and encourage companies to expand on international markets. At the ministry of economy we have taken a number of measures in order to increase the competitiveness of Polish businesses and promote domestic products. We have developed a range of projects aimed to support such activities.

In 2013-14 we implemented a promotional program covering five prospective markets (Algeria, Brazil, Canada, Kazakhstan and Turkey), and in 2014 we added the UAE and Mexico. In recent years we have also developed our Go China, Go Africa, Go Arctic and now Go Iran programs aimed to encourage Polish companies to explore trade and investment opportunities in those regions. The aim of my visit to Tehran is to promote the Go Iran program among Iranian politicians and entrepreneurs.

Iran is one of the most important markets in the Middle East. The present Polish-Iranian trade is below potential for both countries. In 2014, Poland’s exports to Iran amounted to €34.9 million and imports to €22.4 million. The trade volume exceeded €57 million. Exports in January-May 2015 amounted to nearly €16 million (a slight growth of about €1 million compared to the same period of 2014).

Imports topped €13 million (up by €3.9 million compared to the end of April 2014). We hope that in the current situation we will manage to change the trend and the results will soon improve to the benefit of both countries.

Among other sectors, Poland is interested in cooperating with Iran’s fuel industry. Iran also has rich deposits of other resources which could be contracted in the future when international sanctions are lifted. Our companies are also actively involved in supplies of mining machinery and equipment.

Additionally, Iran’s strategic location in the Middle East offers opportunities to launch rail connections with Central Asian countries. Their implementation will involve considerable investments. We see opportunities for Polish companies also in this area.

Poland’s top export items include fuel and oil injection pumps, transfusion equipment, medical tools and graphite electrodes. On the import side, Poland buys raisins and prunes, pistachios and offal. Iran is a major food importer. Poland has been making efforts and continues talks to secure a treaty-based support for Polish exports of such products.

We also regard the following sectors as potentially prospective: cosmetics, pharmaceuticals, mining machines, energy efficiency technologies, agricultural machines as well as produce and food processing machines, transport (locomotives, carriages and automotive parts), construction chemicals, furniture, medical equipment, construction and decorative materials, clothes, and brown and white goods.

Poland is an excellent location for investing and developing business. It is confirmed by international reports which stress Poland’s economic and political stability, educated and competent staff and vast internal market. In the times of the global economic crisis Poland strengthened its position not only in Central and Eastern Europe, but across the continent.

Its beneficial location in the heart of Europe and at the crossroads of the main transport routes offers an opportunity to export products to all European countries and reach more than half a billion consumers. Poland’s stability and security guaranteed by its NATO and EU membership make the country a credible and important business partner for foreign investors.

It is worth noting that Poland successfully operates special economic zones. Since their launch, the zones have been an effective instrument for attracting investment and an important factor influencing employment growth in the regions. Businesses investing in the zones bring their own modern technologies and management systems.

Our activities aimed at supporting entrepreneurship also include numerous legislative initiatives. We have prepared a range of solutions to facilitate doing business in Poland. We continue to work on new ones. I invite Iranian entrepreneurs to invest in Poland, while our SEZs are interested in establishing cooperation with their Iranian counterparts as well.

Iran’s agreement with the international community creates new conditions for economic cooperation. I hope that Iran will become an attractive trade partner for Poland. My wish for both Polish and Iranian entrepreneurs is that cooperation between our countries develops rapidly.