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At the end of , of the 54 commercial banks operating in Poland, 13 were listed on the Warsaw Stock Exchange, and their share in the WSE capitalisation amounted to It is important to note that competition in the Polish banking sector has been growing rapidly in the past few years.
This is reflected in mergers, as well as in the ever growing involvement of foreign banks. Since the privatisation processes started, foreign shareholders have been steadily increasing their investments in the Polish banking sector.
In , banks controlled by foreign investors accounted for Foreign branches of credit institutions accounted for another 0. The following diagram presents the ownership structure of the banking sector in Poland as of 31 December At the end of , out of 54 commercial banks operating in Poland, foreign shareholders controlled Moreover, foreign shareholders had minority stakes in a further 3 banks.
Foreign involvement in the banking sector in Poland in terms of country of origin is further illustrated in the following diagram. Economic Environment In , the consolidation processes continued, resulting in the disappearance of two banks.
These, however, were merely transformed to became a part of the newly opened branches of credit institutions. Two banks Cetelem Bank Polska S.
As of 1 May this protection refers to banks covered by the Polish deposit insurance system. Moreover, the NBP protects savings in those banks by strict supervision and by imposing receivership management in case of financial problems.
Ranking of Banks by Balance Sheet Total as of Bank Pekao S. Bank BPH S. ING Bank l ski S. BRE Bank S. Bank Handlowy S. Bank Millennium S. Kredyt Bank S.
These are listed in Appendix Insurance and reinsurance services may be provided only after the approval of the KNUiFE, which grants an insurance licence and also has the power to revoke it.
Its scope of activity also includes supervision over insurance mediation, pension funds, and employee pension plans.
The only legal forms permitted for conducting insurance activity are the joint-stock company and the mutual insurance company. Insurance companies are obliged to distinguish between life insurance and other types of insurance and can not engage in any other form of economic activity.
Out of 68 operating insurance companies, 32 were insurers licensed to run life insurance businesses, including two mutual insurance societies.
A further 36 were licensed to render non-life insurance services, the number including seven mutual insurance societies and one main branch of a foreign insurance company.
In two companies, PZU S. Initially, membership was voluntary; however, since , PIU membership has been obligatory. In there were over 35 thousand registered insurance agents in Poland.
Number of companies Number of Insurance Companies 90 80 70 60 50 40 30 20 10 0 64 50 25 38 41 72 74 78 69 72 71 54 30 Source: KNUiFE, In , the market was still dominated by the PZU S.
The industry remains heavily concentrated. In terms of gross written premium, two companies PZU S. None of their competitors managed to secure more than 6.
The situation is not much different in the life insurance market. Two companies PZU ycie S. The overall gross written premiums of the Polish insurance market amounted to approximately PLN Life insurance premiums increased by an impressive This means that the premium collected per capita in Poland still lags far behind European levels, even though the proportion of insurance premiums to the GDP has been increasing steadily, reaching 3.
However, the European Union average is twice as high. In comparison to , the net profit grew by In order to protect the insured, the Insurance Guarantee Fund was established in In the case of foreigners the Insurance Guarantee Fund pays compensation on the principle of reciprocity.
The Fund also satisfies claims if an insurance company declares insolvency, subject to certain limitations. It has the form of a joint-stock company with most of the shares being owned by the state.
Since , it has been insuring Polish companies, primarily against commercial risk, offering solutions that combine export and domestic contract insurance with credit information and credit portfolio management.
Its services are available to all exporters, regardless of the scale of their operations and the countries to which they export, providing them with the opportunity to insure export receivables from over countries worldwide.
By the end of almost insurance companies from the EU and the EEA declared their intention of starting operations in Poland, based on the freedom to provide services principle.
Moreover, seven domestic insurers offer their services abroad. The share of foreign investments in the life insurance sector and in the non-life sector was about the same.
The following diagram presents the foreign investment structure in the Polish insurance sector as of 31 December Major investments in the Polish insurance sector have come from German companies, which have invested PLN 1.
Significant investments, amounting to some PLN 0. Presently there are only a few Polish insurance companies that do not have a foreign strategic partner.
The development of the insurance sector in the next few years will be influenced substantially by new market players from the EU and the EEA entering the market on the freedom to provide services principle.
At the same time, consolidation of the market will continue, encompassing an increase in the share capital of major insurance companies, merger and acquisition processes, and strengthening capital links between the banking and insurance sectors.
Economic Environment Pension System The Polish pension system embodies the idea of security through diversity, which is achieved by basing the system on three independent pillars.
It links the future pension closely to the contributions paid. Out of the three pillars, two are mandatory and one is voluntary. The mandatory pension contribution amounts to It is predominantly a notional defined contribution pay-as-you-go scheme, with the pension amount related to the amount of contributions made that are index-linked to the contribution base and the average life expectancy.
Consequently, the later a person retires, the larger the pension paid. The second pillar, accounting for the remaining 7. ZUS collects the whole contribution of An employee can select a fund of his choice only one fund from the ones registered.
It is also possible to change funds. As of 31 December , there were 15 pension funds in Poland, managing assets of approximately PLN At the end of the year most of their portfolio was invested in bonds This means that the pension funds are very important players on the Polish capital market.
In fact, their share in the WSE trade amounted to 6. It is also certain that their role will still be increasing, in proportion to the size of the assets under their management.
On the other hand, the voluntary third pillar allows for diverse organisational principles and forms of participation, which means that it can be better adjusted to individual preferences.
In this pillar contributions are paid into life insurance pension and investment funds, and employee funds. Companies are allowed to establish employee pension funds and mutual insurance funds on an entirely voluntary basis.
Contributions are paid from after tax income, although, the benefits are tax-free. As of May , there were operational employee pension plans.
As of 1 September it is possible to save for a future pension on individual pension accounts IKE , managed by banks, insurance companies, investment fund societies, and brokerage houses.
The most important benefit of this type of pension plan is that capital gains generated are taxfree.
The first four months since the introduction of individual pension accounts indicated that this form of pension saving would be quite popular.
By the end of there were already over , IKEs. However, in , only some , Poles decided to open an IKE, resulting in approximately , individual pension accounts held by the end of Almost two-thirds were managed by insurance companies, and almost a quarter by investment fund societies.
Economic Environment Each of the pillars may be characterised by the various types of risks to which it is exposed. For example, the first one is exposed to political pressure, the ageing of the population and increasing unemployment risks, while the other two are more vulnerable to persistent inflation as well as to disturbances on the financial markets.
It is governed by the Telecommunications Law of 16 July , effective as of 3 September One of the key elements introduced by this law is a relaxation of the regulation of the telecommunications sector exercised by the Chairman of the Office of Electronic Communications.
Now, the regulation is more focused on real market needs, i. The licensing system has been abolished, save for permits required in some cases to operate radio broadcasting equipment.
Operation in the telecommunications sector requires only registering in the Register of Telecommunications Entrepreneurs kept by the UKE Chairman.
As at the end of May there were some companies authorised to conduct telecommunications operations. The UKE Chairman is empowered to perform typical regulatory activities with regards to the telecommunications sector.
These include resolving disputes between market players, ensuring the stimulation of competition in the sector, determining professional qualifications in the area of telecommunications, co-operating with the competent minister in drafting new laws and regulations, and co-operating with international telecommunications organisations.
Moreover, the UKE Chairman manages the frequency allocations. It should be noted that the Ministry of Transport and the UKE are focusing their activities on de-monopolising the Polish telecommunications market, and this has included the introduction of the current telecommunications law and the privatisation of TPSA.
The Polish telecommunications market is the largest in Central Europe. It is characterised by relatively low rates of penetration per capita, both in fixed-line and mobile segments.
Low fixed-line penetration is due mainly to undeveloped infrastructure, as well as the fact that a significant part of the population lives in rural areas.
The fixed-line telecommunication market in Poland is highly concentrated. The dominant fixed-line operator TPSA , practically services the whole local fixed-line telecommunications market.
As of December , there were also 47 operators that have been assigned an NDS Network Access Number , which enables them to provide long-distance and international calls.
However, only a few of them have started operations. Nevertheless, TPSA has local competitors everywhere now and the pressure in the longdistance and international call segments is growing.
Moreover, there are several companies offering VoIP services, which are very popular in Poland. Use of internet communicators, such as Skype, instead of a phone, is on the rise, as such communicators are much cheaper than traditional phone services.
However, it has been slowing down ever since. In , the fixedline telephone operators increased the number of main lines by just 2.
It seems that marks an end to the era of fixed-line infrastructure development. Traditional telephone services are just not good enough to compete with mobile networks and other means of electronic communication.
This is true especially in Poland, where phone calls are quite expensive. Economic Environment The number of main lines decreased by 2.
Approximately 9. At the end of , average telephone density, measured by the number of main lines per inhabitants, was For comparison, average telephone density in Sweden reached 77, in Germany 66, in France 56, and in Spain 43, as of 1 January Telephone Subscribers per Inhabitants 80 70 In June , the three mobile operators were still the only players in this market segment.
This situation may change if new mobile virtual network operators MVNO enter the market. There are already well over 50 MVNOs authorised to provide services, although, by June none had begun offering services on a commercial basis.
This pushed up the average mobile telephone density to Still, mobile phone penetration in Poland does not yet compare very favourably with the European average.
As of 1 January , the mobile telephone density reached in the Czech Republic, in Sweden, 86 in Germany, and 74 in France.
Power Industry The Polish fuels and energy sector, significantly reshaped by the transformation process started in the early s, is still far from uniform in regard to ownership and market structure.
The situation in individual sub-sectors varies widely, from dominance of a single company in the gas sector, to highly de-monopolised structures in the liquid fuels and electricity sectors.
The legislative framework is based on the Energy Law of 10 April , significantly amended in March Economic Environment industry-based power plants, which form a part of industrial plants, with the industrial plant using most of the electric energy produced.
Professional power plants generate approximately This situation is a result of the abundance of these natural resources in Poland.
Poland exported The Czech Republic and Slovakia remain the leading export markets for Polish energy. The energy law passed in April has created conditions for competition on the energy market and for improving the financial standing of companies in the energy sector.
The essential component of the law is the liberalisation of prices of energy and fuels that will be allowed to respond to the demands of the market.
The law provides for the gradual introduction of market mechanisms. The competitiveness of the market is achieved through de-monopolisation and by introducing the third party access principle, which means opening the electric energy market to the final consumers.
The price of electrical energy is clearly divided into a production element and an energy transfer element. The electrical energy market can be divided into the wholesale market and retail market.
In the wholesale market, providers, both producers and trade companies , sell energy on a competitive basis. The energy trade is organised through direct contracts between the market participants, however, it is expected that in future most trade will take place on the already established Electrical Energy Exchange.
The wholesale market includes both energy exports and imports. The dominant wholesale market player is Polskie Sieci Elektroenergetyczne S.
How to Do Business in Poland 57 Presently the right to select an electric energy provider is granted to all institutional customers all customers other than households.
On the grounds of the Energy Law, as of 1 July , all electric energy consumers in Poland will have the right to select their electrical energy provider.
Similarly, as of 1 July , all gas fuel consumers will have the right to select their provider. Currently, this right is granted to all institutional customers.
It is worth noting that already as of 1 January all thermal energy consumers have the right to select a thermal energy provider. It provides for diversification of supply, development of energy generation from renewable sources, further application of the third party access principle, and further restructuring and privatisation of the sector.
Foreign involvement in the energy sector is already quite substantial and other major projects are pending. Economic Environment Transportation Infrastructure and Highway Construction Poland has an extensive transport infrastructure.
There are over , kilometres of hard surface roads, i. However, only some 19, kilometres of railway lines are in use, which gives a density of just over 6 km per km2.
In , a total of 1. This represents a very minor decrease in comparison to 1. Of this number, million passengers travelled by rail, million by road, and some 4.
The structure of the Polish transportation system is best reflected in the share of goods delivered in All in all, approximately million tons were transported 4.
Please note that the data for the whole economy including companies employing 9 persons or less is roughly twice as high, with road transport accounting for approximately half of goods delivered.
The primary reason for the major problems with the quality of road transport infrastructure is the continuously low share of relevant outlays in the GDP.
The result is the poor state of Polish roads. However, one must note the positive trend, which has continued since , to increase the amount of road repair work, as reflected in the following graph.
Total length of sections repaired km Roads Repaired 0 Source: General Directorate for National Roads and Motorways, 60 II.
Thus the programme of building a network of highways in Poland was adopted by a decree of the Council of Ministers in September The experience of the first six years of the programme, during which not a single kilometre of toll highway had been put into operation, indicated that it needed larger support from public funds.
In return, the state would gain the right to participate in the profits. Since then the programme has been significantly modified. It calls for the construction of a network of three highways, two running from east to west, and one from north to south, with a total length of some 2, km.
It will be complemented by a network of motorways exceeding 5, km. However, the highway and motorway construction is to accelerate, with less funds coming from the state budget and more from other sources, especially the EU.
In light of recent developments, it seems that highway construction in Poland is finally taking off. Reaching the goal of 1, km of highways and 1, km of motorways by does not appear impossible.
The GDP is estimated to have grown by some 5. Internal demand appears to be the leading GDP growth factor.
At the same time, inflation stayed at a very low level. Prices of consumer goods and services grew by just 0. In January-April , sold industrial production grew by At the same time, registered unemployed persons, numbering 2.
With production and employment growing, a certain growth in salaries should be expected. In January-April , gross average salaries and wages in the enterprise sector amounted to PLN 2, a 4.
In real terms gross average salaries and wages in the enterprise sector grew by 4. In the first quarter of , according to customs statistics, exports and imports rose very substantially, with exports growing faster than imports.
In USD terms exports grew by It is expected that employment will continue to increase and that the unemployment rate will drop to However, following positive developments in the first months of , both the Ministry of Finance and the Ministry of the Economy forecast in May GDP growth at approximately 5.
How to Do Business in Poland 63 In May , the Ministry of Finance released information about selected macroeconomic indices constituting the grounds for the drawing up of the Budgetary Law.
According to this information, GDP growth, driven by domestic demand, is to reach 4. Annual inflation is projected at 1. According to the IMF, a cyclical recovery and the benefits of EU membership are coming together to produce promising opportunities for Poland.
Therefore, Poland is likely to register a GDP growth of 4. The IMF views the outlook for inflation as benign.
Presently, low inflation reflects both one-off factors and subdued core inflation, which excludes direct effects from food and energy.
Obviously, inflation will rise with the recovery and the lapsing of the one-off factors. Nevertheless, it should remain below the 2. Medium-term prospects largely depend on a commitment to strong policies and on the economic institutions to realize them.
Possibilities for increasing growth are clear, as the opportunities of EU membership, the efficient use of EU funds, and the advantages resulting from euro adoption, could all contribute to higher growth over the next 5 to 10 years.
Poland rejoined the World Bank in and began borrowing from it in Since , the Bank has lent USD 6. About USD 4. Twelve ongoing projects are mainly focused on upgrading the infrastructure and energy sectors, protecting the environment, and promoting rural development.
It has also helped the country create employment through privatisation and reforms in the banking and financial sector.
How to Do Business in Poland 65 The International Finance Corporation IFC , a member of the World Bank Group, fosters economic growth in the developing world by financing private sector investments, mobilising capital in international financial markets, and providing technical assistance and advice to governments and businesses.
The European Bank for Reconstruction and Development EBRD was established in to finance development projects that foster the transition to a market economy in Eastern and Central European countries.
The new business volume in remained robust with EUR Poland also had benefited for many years before its accession from the financial support of the European Union.
In line with decisions taken during the EU summit in Berlin in March Agenda , there was a considerable increase in financial aid to EU candidate states in It was later expanded to include other countries of Central and Eastern Europe.
Right now it has ten beneficiaries: the ten countries of Central and Eastern Europe that are former and present EU candidate states, i.
In the EU candidate states, the programme supported actions preparing the countries for accession. There is no new PHARE programme, however the funds allocated in , are to be contracted within a 2 year period and realised within one year.
From 1 May the accession date transfers from the EU budget increased and diversified. Apart from transfers within the pre-accession programmes, Poland gained access to other funds, transferred within the framework of individual EU policies.
All in all, Poland received EUR 3. Financial flows between Poland and the EU budget in are presented in the following table.
UNIDO harnesses the joint forces of governments and the private sector, acting as a neutral adviser to foster competitive industrial production, develop international partnership, and promote socially equitable and environmentally friendly industrial development.
It is the only worldwide organisation dealing exclusively with industry from a development perspective and rendering non-profit, neutral and specialised services.
UNIDO activities focus on promoting investments and related technologies, and assuring clean and sustainable industrial development. Maintaining its universal character and vocation, UNIDO pursues a geographical, sectoral, and thematic division of services directed at the least developed countries and economies in transition and its services are offered first of all to small and medium-size enterprises.
Investment and technology are proving to be essential keys to success in the global marketplace. However, many countries face enormous difficulties in attracting investors, as well as in gaining access to technology and markets.
They facilitate contacts between business communities in their host countries and in other countries. By drawing on the linkages of the UNIDO Exchange electronic platform, ITPO Warsaw redresses the industrial development imbalance by bringing investment and the latest technology on offer in Poland and abroad to those countries in Central and East Europe and Mid-Asia which are most in need of a promotional hand.
At the same time ITPO Warsaw opens up new opportunities for investors and technology suppliers from Poland to find potential partners in countries with economies in transition.
Its tasks also include supporting the development of Polish small and medium-size enterprises entering the markets of countries in Central and East Europe and Mid-Asia.
The most important are the Country Presentation Meetings, which provide information on the economies and legal frameworks for foreign investment in the developing and reforming countries.
Further, individual industrial investment projects are promoted in Poland and in developing countries.
ITPO supports the development processes of Polish industry through various management training courses teaching the evaluation of the profitability of export products, modern techniques for preparing an offer, marketing and negotiations related to, for example, technology transfer.
The promotion of COMFAR, a software developed by UNIDO to enable the appraisal of industrial investment projects, business performance, financial analysis, and the diagnosis of enterprises, is another example of training-related activities.
Other kinds of assistance include editing and disseminating business manuals and related publications. The services of the Warsaw UNIDO Office are offered to entrepreneurs in the developing and reforming countries, foreign investors and Polish institutions, businesses and business organisations.
The ITPO assists companies from developing and reforming countries in their search for potential Polish partners interested in technical co-operation, subcontracting, the transfer of technology, establishing a joint venture, or in the acquisition of a company in a respective developing or reforming country.
Economic Environment The ITPO services offered to Polish firms, organisations, and institutions include the identification of potential partners and strategic investors, and the upgrading of managerial capabilities and skills through training courses on the preparation of business plans and feasibility studies, marketing techniques, and the implementation of ISO standards.
It should be noted that some of the publications mentioned above are also available on-line and on CD-ROM. It creates great opportunities for a broad range of exports to Poland, including for medium-size and small foreign producers.
However, more and more companies are starting up new manufacturing operations each year and foreign exporters face strong and constantly increasing competition.
At the same time, a large number of modern and innovative enterprises based in Poland are ready to expand into foreign markets.
These companies offer a wide range of high quality products, often at very competitive prices. For more information on the investment incentives and on how to establish a company in Poland, please refer to Chapters V and X, respectively.
The following sub-chapters concerning customs regulations and tariff suspensions and quotas have been compiled based on information published and distributed by the European Union.
Generally, all goods and services can be traded without restriction. There are, however, some usual exceptions. For example, a licence is required for the import and export of products and technologies for the police and military sector, such as explosives or weapons, and ammunition, in keeping with the Law on Economic Freedom of 2 July Please refer to Chapter V, the Legal Considerations section, for a complete list of areas, enumerated in the Law on Economic Freedom, in which economic activity may be undertaken only if an appropriate license koncesja is granted.
The national legislation part consists of The Customs Law of 19 March and the decrees issued on its grounds. Since on the EU internal market goods can circulate freely between member states, the CCT applies to the import of goods across the external borders of the EU.
The tariff is common to all EU members, but the rates of duty differ from one kind of import to another, depending on what they are and where they come from.
The rates depend on the economic sensitivity of products. The tariff is a concept, a collection of laws as opposed to a single codified law in itself.
It is a combination of classification of goods and the duty rates which apply to each class of goods. In addition, the tariff contains all other Community legislation that has an effect on the level of customs duty payable on a particular import, for example country of origin.
Through the tariff, the Community applies the principle that domestic producers should be able to compete fairly and equally on the internal market with manufacturers exporting from other countries.
It is an instrument for practical use and information, but does not have legal status itself. At importation, the use of the TARIC Code for the customs declaration for release for free circulation and for statistical purposes is obligatory.
In particular cases one or two additional 4 digit codes are added e. The TARIC includes all applicable customs duties and all customs trade policy measures for all goods applicable at any time, set out in various legal measures and it changes constantly.
The TARIC is not itself law and is not a legal base for the application of duties and other trade policy measures, however, it is an essential instrument for the customs administrations and companies because it is updated daily to take account of new legislation, the using up of quotas etc.
The TARIC presents all third-country and preferential duty rates actually applicable, as well as all commercial policy measures.
The TARIC includes information on tariff suspensions, tariff quotas, preferential treatment, anti-dumping and countervailing duties, import prohibitions and restrictions, quantitative limits, export surveillance, licenses and certificates.
This regulation differentiates five customs-approved treatments or use of goods, such as: the placing of goods under a customs procedure; their entry into a free zone or free warehouse; their reexportation from the customs territory of the Community; their destruction; their How to Do Business in Poland 75 abandonment to the State Treasury.
The annual publication of the tariff schedule current edition: Official Journal L of October 28, contains the most-favoured-nation MFN duty rates applied to each class of goods, as well as the nomenclature of goods classification of goods.
The annual tariff schedule applies for a calendar year. Autonomous Tariff Suspensions and Quotas Autonomous tariff suspensions and quotas permit the total or partial waiver of the normal duties applicable to imported goods for an unlimited quantity suspensions or a limited quantity quota , normally for an unlimited period of validity.
They are exceptions to the general rule represented by the Common Customs Tariff. The role of suspensions and quotas is to stimulate economic activity, improving competitive capacity, creating employment, modernising structures etc.
The supplies concerned are raw materials, semi-finished goods or components not available in the EU suspensions or which are available but in insufficient quantities quotas.
No suspensions or quotas are granted for finished products or where identical, equivalent or substitute products are manufactured in sufficient quantities within the EU or by producers in a third country with preferential tariff arrangements.
The same applies where the measure could result in a distortion of competition in respect of the final products. Foreign Trade Once a suspension or a quota is granted, any operator in any Member State is eligible to benefit from it.
Both suspensions and quotas are reviewed regularly to take account of technical or economic trends in products and markets, with the possibility of addition, modification or deletion.
Requests are submitted by the Member States on behalf of EU processing or manufacturing companies. Requests are not considered where the amount of uncollected customs duty in question is estimated to be less than EUR 20, per year.
However, small and medium-size enterprises may group together to reach this threshold. In the framework of several agreements that the European Community has concluded with third countries, as well as in the framework of autonomous preferential arrangements for some beneficiary countries, tariff concessions are provided for a predetermined volume of goods preferential tariff quotas.
Within preferential tariff quotas, a predetermined volume of goods originating in a specified country can benefit at import into the Community from a more favourable rate of duty than the normal third countries duty mentioned in the combined nomenclature.
Entitlement to benefit from preferential tariff quotas is of course subject to presentation of the necessary evidence of origin.
The other tariff quotas are managed by DG Agriculture through a system of import licences. Various Council and Commission Regulations contain the specific provisions for the management of these tariff quotas.
How to Do Business in Poland 77 Both Community and non-Community goods may be placed in a free zone or free warehouse.
Goods entering a free zone or free warehouse need not be presented to the customs authorities, nor need a customs declaration be lodged.
However, the customs authorities may check goods entering, leaving or remaining in a free zone or free warehouse.
There is no limit to the length of time goods may remain in free zones or free warehouses, except for certain goods covered by the common agricultural policy, with regards to which specific time limits may be imposed.
Companies operating in dutyfree zones may undertake any industrial, service, or commercial activity, under the conditions envisaged by the code.
One of them in Warsaw operates simply as a group of duty-free shops, however, the remaining six are ready to accommodate companies undertaking economic activity.
The above mentioned duty-free zones are linked with the main transport routes or are located in ports which allows them to influence the volume of goods in transit through Poland, and the amount of goods that are re-exported.
Trade between the duty-free zone and a foreign country is subject to neither import quotas nor customs permits and payments. Duty-free zones and bonded warehouses are set up by the Minister of Finance in co-operation with the Minister of the Economy, through a decree of the Minister of Finance which also appoints the manager and defines the area.
Duty-free zones are expected to attract capital, create new jobs, and facilitate exports, however, they do not play any significant role in the Polish economy at present.
The program is regulated in detail by several decrees of the Minister of Finance. The DOKE program introduces a mechanism for the stabilisation of interest rates, allowing Polish exporters, commercial banks, and IFIs to offer medium and long term export credit with a repayment period of at least 2 years with a fixed interest rate for financing Polish exports.
It eliminates the risk of incurring losses arising from fluctuating market interest rates. The mechanism is based on periodic settlements between Bank Gospodarstwa Krajowego BGK , a state-owned bank administering the DOKE program on behalf of the State Treasury, and commercial banks granting fixed interest rate export credits through long term agreements.
If, during the settlement period, the fixed export credit interest rate CIRR rate is lower than the costs of financing market short term interest rate for a given currency plus a spread of 80 to points , then BGK effects an appropriate payment to the commercial bank.
If the opposite is found, then the commercial bank is obliged to transfer the surplus to BGK. Foreign Trade Results The liberalisation of the economy and fast economic growth have led to an ever growing internal demand for products and services.
In order to maintain its trade balance Poland is faced with the challenge of ensuring a greater market share for Polish goods and services on foreign markets.
Exports have been an important driving force behind the rising the pace of economic growth in recent years. In , exports saw spectacular growth, increasing by However, it must be noted that such spectacular foreign trade results in USD terms were due, to a large extent, to the comparative weakness of the USD against the Polish currency in Nonetheless, export growth in PLN terms was still substantial at 6.
Foreign Trade in USD million EXPORTS 28, 27, 31, Food and live animals 2, 2, 2, Beverages and tobacco 96 Crude materials, inedible, except fuels Mineral fuels, lubricants 1, 1, 1, Oil, fats, and waxes 38 46 23 Chemicals and related products 1, 1, 2, Manuf.
It is estimated that this trade amounts to several USD billion a year. The EU as a whole has a Exports in - Geographical Structure Developing Countries 6.
Foreign Trade The expansion of Polish exports since the beginning of transformations was accompanied by the modernisation of its commodity structure.
This resulted in the growing importance of highly processed products especially from the engineering and automotive sectors.
On the other hand, the importance of raw materials and semifinished products mineral products, metallurgical products decreased substantially.
Restructuring of the economy, powered by the inflow of foreign direct investments was the leading factor behind this change. In , machinery and transport equipment dominate both exports Manufactured goods classified by raw materials were in second place, accounting for Even though the overall foreign trade balance is negative, there are several commodity groups generating substantial surpluses.
As far as imports are concerned, it is important to note that the trade deficit mainly results from the import of raw materials required by the economy, as well as of investment goods and articles bought for co-operation and supply purposes, indispensable for industrial restructuring and development.
In , the import of raw materials and components accounted for Consequently, petroleum oils are the main imported commodity, generating a USD 6.
Other very important import products include the already mentioned cars and other passenger motor vehicles imports of USD 3. The private sector plays a dominant role in foreign trade.
In , the private sector accounted for In terms of value, current Polish exports are similar to those of some much smaller countries of the region.
The ratio of exports to the GDP amounts to In , exports per capita reached 2, USD, between half and one-third of the Czech, Slovak, or Hungarian level, while in a majority of OECD countries this ratio is several times higher.
The current account balance of payments has been negative for several years, as shown in the following table. It is worth noting though, that a favourable trend consisting in diminishing the current account deficit from one year to another interrupted only in has been visible since Balance of Payments on the Current Account USD million Current Account Exports FOB Imports FOB Trade balance Services balance Income balance Current transfers balance -6, , -9, 32, 30, 35, 45, 45, 48, , , , 4, 1, 1, -1, -1, -1, 2, 2, 2, -5, 41, 49, -7, -1, 2, -5, 46, 53, -7, -1, 3, -4, , -4, 61, 81, 95, 66, 87, 98, -5, -5, -2, 1, 1, -3, , , 4, 5, 6, Source: NBP, This deficit is balanced, however, by a strong position on the capital and financial accounts.
Consequently, foreign exchange reserves have been rising steadily. In , Polish official reserve assets amounted to USD 4. By the end of , official reserve assets amounted to USD Foreign Trade Official Reserve Assets 50 This legislation came into force in April The law governs two basic privatisation methods: indirect privatisation, also known as capital privatisation, and direct privatisation, sometimes referred to as privatisation through liquidation.
The Mass Privatisation Programme, which aimed at spreading the benefits of ownership changes across the whole nation is based on the Law on National Investment Funds and their Privatisation of 30 April The Programme was launched in The privatisation of the Polish economy is supervised by the Ministry of the Treasury.
Finally, provincial governors voivodes supervise the privatisation of companies for which they have been the founding body.
In , the Minister of the Treasury authorised directors of Regional Offices of the Ministry of the Treasury see Appendix 15 for contact information to grant permissions, on his behalf, for direct privatisations of state enterprises supervised by provincial governors.
Half of privatisation revenue has been generated by foreign investors. The annual revenues, showing direct privatisation and indirect privatisation components are presented on the following graph.
Privatisation Revenue in USD million 7 6 5 4 3 2 1 0 indirect privatisation direct privatisation Source: Ministry of the Treasury, How to Do Business in Poland 89 In , privatisation revenue taking into account only the effected payments amounted to USD 1.
In , the government plans project privatisation revenue at some USD 1. Privatisation Objectives and Plans for The current national privatisation policy aims at completing core ownership transformation processes in Poland.
In , in the electric energy generation sector, both the continuation and the launch of privatisation processes in the remaining power plants and thermal power plants is envisaged.
Further consolidation and restructuring of the sector will continue, including establishing Energetyka Podkarpacka S. In the pharmaceutical sector, a new restructuring program for Polski Holding Farmaceutyczny S.
Its privatisation is to take place in two stages. First, a minority block of shares will be offered through the Warsaw Stock Exchange.
However, the Treasury is to remain in control of the production assets. In the defence sector, the consolidation of companies will continue within two capital groups Bumar Sp.
In , privatisation through offering blocks of shares will take place in thirteen companies. There were 8, state-owned companies registered at the end of According to the Ministry of the Treasury, since the beginning of the privatisation of state-owned enterprises till the end of , privatisation processes have been started in 5, state-owned companies.
Moreover, assets of 1, liquidated state farms have been transferred to the Agricultural Property Stock of the State Treasury, bringing the total number of state enterprises involved in privatisation to 7, Of these, The most characteristic feature of privatisation processes in Poland is the variety of privatisation methods used.
The idea behind this diversity is to offer methods best suited to the size, financial situation, and importance of a given entity to be privatised. Whole sectors or branches of industry have been analysed and strategies for their privatisation have been devised, first by the Ministry of Privatisation and later by the Ministry of the Treasury, once it was established.
The Ministry decides which methods are best suited for individual enterprises, what role can be played by foreign capital in the privatisation of a given sector, and which enterprises can be offered to foreign investors.
The legislation provides for two fundamental alternative methods of privatisation of state-owned enterprises. The shares of the commercialised company are then offered to a third party.
This method is usually applied to large and medium-size state enterprises. Such liquidation is followed by the offer of the assets which could include the whole business directly to third parties, either for purchase or to lease.
The assets of a company being liquidated may also be transferred to an existing company. The government also makes use of article 19 of the Law on State Enterprises of 25 September to put companies into private hands.
This usually entails the liquidation of a state-owned enterprise in poor financial condition, followed by the sale of its assets to satisfy creditors.
By the end of , the liquidation procedure had been started in 1, enterprises and by the same date the process had been completed in 1, enterprises By 1 May , only 17 state enterprises had been privatised this way.
Since a lot of debt was retired during privatisations of this type, privatisation through debt-equity swaps had a public aid character.
Therefore, as of the date of Polish accession to the EU, this form of indirect privatisation was abandoned.
Hundreds of thousands of small and medium-size retail and wholesale shops, restaurants, etc. How to Do Business in Poland 93 Capital Privatisation A traditional form of capital privatisation is applied to large enterprises.
The first stage in the capital privatisation is conversion of the enterprise into a company with all shares held by the State Treasury commercialisation.
Enterprises are valued independently, prospectuses are drawn up, a subscription is held and then a final allotment of shares is made. Accelerated privatisation may be applied to medium-size and small enterprises, where the whole or substantial parts of an enterprise could be sold to a single buyer.
The newly created company assumes all the rights and liabilities of the transformed state enterprise and, subject to certain exceptions, takes on most of the employees of the transformed enterprise.
The charter of the company specifies how the capital is to be divided into share capital and reserve capital.
On the conclusion of the charter, the management applies for registration of the new company, and the state enterprise is removed from the registry of state companies.
Before this is done, the Ministry of the Treasury may order a financial review of the company in order to value its assets and to determine whether the company first requires restructuring, particularly when there has been a time lapse between incorporation and the presentation of the offer.
There are four general methods for offering shares: public offer, negotiations initiated by public invitation, public tender, and accepting an offer made by a shareholder inviting other shareholders to sell their shares.
These shares cannot be traded on the Stock Exchange for a period of 2 to 3 years. Privatisation Under certain circumstances farmers and fishermen may acquire shares on the same basis as employees in the companies with which they have long-term contracts.
State enterprises require permission from the Minister of Finance to acquire shares in other companies. By the end of , according to the Ministry of the Treasury, 1, state enterprises had been commercialised, out of which 1, had been transformed into single-holder State Treasury joint-stock or limited liability companies.
Out of this number, investors acquired shares in 1, companies, including encompassed by the Mass Privatisation Programme.
The Ministry of the Treasury has prepared a transfer list of companies being privatised individually and offered to foreign investors.
This list provides potential investors with some basic information on the companies that are currently being privatised by trade sales or public offering.
The pricing, sale and distribution of shares is subject to thorough control and supervision. Fixing the price for each enterprise is carried out in strict compliance with market techniques.
An active anti-monopoly policy supports the competitive process and counteracts any attempt to acquire capital control over any branch by a single investor.
It entails the direct sale or leasing of the assets of the liquidated enterprise. The characteristic feature of direct privatisation is that it is conducted by the founding bodies of state enterprises by consent of the Minister of the Treasury.
The direct privatisation is decentralised. However, the whole process of direct privatisation is controlled and supervised by the Ministry of the Treasury by granting its approval for implementation of individual projects.
This method is devised for smaller companies. In most cases, the privatised enterprises were sold or leased to employees and management of the enterprise.
Direct privatisation is not only popular but also very effective. Direct Privatisation by Forms at the end of All or part of the assets may be acquired using the same methods as with the offering of shares by private local or foreign investors without any special permit.
In such cases the pricing of the enterprise is simplified by making use, within certain pre-set limits, of a valuation based on the book value of the enterprise and on the annual profits.
This accelerates the process leading to a sale and also considerably reduces the cost of privatisation. An enterprise may be sold by instalments.
Contribution of assets. Assets may be contributed to an already existing company or a company specially incorporated to receive these assets in exchange for shares.
As the State Treasury becomes a partner, it is easier to mobilise a strategic investor. The shares acquired by the Treasury would eventually be sold in a public offer.
Employee buyout lease of the enterprise. The enterprise is liquidated and the new company leases the assets under a contract negotiated on behalf of the State Treasury by the founding body of the liquidated enterprise.
This contract may give the lessee an 96 IV. Privatisation option to purchase. When only part of the assets is leased, the remainder may be sold or contributed to another company.
APA was a trust organisation, authorised by the State Treasury to exercise ownership rights regarding state property in agriculture and obliged to take over all the property of liquidated state-owned farms, other agricultural real estate of the State Treasury, as well as realty from the National Land Fund.
APA can sell the property to one purchaser if the transaction does not result in the total area of agricultural land owned by the purchaser exceeding ha.
Moreover, a separate authorisation from the APA president is required for the conclusion of sale contract concerning real estate larger than 50 ha, as well as real estate with value exceeding the equivalent of tons of rye, defined pursuant to provisions on agricultural tax.
By the end of , the APA had sold 1, ha and leased , ha of land to foreigners. During the same period, Polish companies with a minority foreign stake purchased 41, ha and leased , ha of land from the Agency.
The APA performs its tasks as a state legal person in accordance with the principle of self-financing. After the assets of a liquidated state agricultural enterprise have been taken over, restructuring programmes determine their use or disposal.
The following table summarises APA activities up to date. Farmland of low quality may be transferred free of charge to the State Forests, or lie fallow.
Apart from those assets that are agriculturally productive, the State Treasury Stock contains assets of historical or national importance, acknowledged as being part of the cultural heritage.
Assets of historical and national importance include land together with buildings, facilities, trees, etc. Dazu kommen noch zwei Luxusyachten und natürlich die ganzen anderen Ausgaben, die ein Luxusleben so mit sich bringt.
Man möchte sich gar nicht vorstellen, wie viele Paar Schuhe Carmen Geiss zuhause im Schrank stehen hat Ganz egal, was man über die Geissens denken mag - eines muss man anerkennen: Der ganze Reichtum ist nicht vom Himmel gefallen, sondern wurde hart erarbeitet.
EUR einstreichen. Von Zeit zu Zeit taucht immer mal wieder das Gerücht auf, dass die Geissens in Wirklichkeit Pleite sind, oder zumindest bald Pleite gehen würden.
Genährt wird das durch die Spekulation, dass das ursprünglich erarbeitete Vermögen ja irgendwann einmal aufgebraucht sein müsste.
Diese Vorwürfe wurden in der Vergangenheit aber immer wieder von Robert und seiner Frau Carmen dementiert.
Klar ist also: Die Geissens sind vielleicht nicht die reichsten Menschen der Welt , für ein gutes Auskommen reicht es aber allemal.
Vielleicht wollt ihr ja selbst so reich werden, wie die Geissens - hier geben wir euch einige Tipps dazu: Wie wird man reich?
Eine Anleitung in 10 Schritten. Bildquellen: Iuliia Bondarenko , Manuel Findeis. Mehr Infos. Hersteller: RTL. Genres: Live-Stream.
Carmen Geiss entschuldigt sich für einen Fehltritt während des letzten Urlaubstrips. Sein Jahreseinkommen beträgt rund 2 Millionen Euro.
Heute finanzieren sich die Geissens mit dem Kauf und Wiederverkauf von Luxusimmobilien. Die zahlreichen Luxusanwesen der Geissens verschlingen einiges an Geld.
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Unheil von oben Noch merkt er nicht, welche immense Gefahr droht.