August 7, 2013
In recent years, Poland has shown remarkably high growth rates despite the economic crisis in the rest of Europe. Many Nordic businesses are already active in Poland, which is a huge market because of its population of 38 million. But what kind of a market is Poland? And what opportunities does this market offer?
Poland is attractive for Nordic businesses for a number of reasons.
With a population of 38 million, Poland is the largest market in Eastern Europe. The size of the population combined with increasing disposable incomes makes Poland interesting both as an export market and as a home market for Nordic businesses setting up in Poland.
Poland is centrally situated in Europe and shares borders with both the “new” and the “old” EU. This makes the country interesting as a regional distribution hub.
“Despite a gradual economic slowdown in 2012, Poland has held up remarkably well
through the global economic crisis of recent years," explains Lars Ekström, General Manager of Danske Bank Poland. "Poland’s outperformance of its peers has been driven largely by the country’s ability to continue offering an attractive nearshore alternative to more remote outsourcing destinations."
Attractive labour force
The labour force is another reason for setting up business in Poland. On the one hand, you have blue-collar workers with relatively low-paying jobs, and on the other, you have an increasing number of very skilled and well-educated young people. This gives businesses a full range of talent to choose from.
“Poland is often referred to as an outsourcing alternative for production companies only,” says Ekström. "However, in recent years, more and more knowledge-based companies have established themselves in Poland because of the rapidly increasing number of Poles with an advanced
Poland has seen strong economic growth in recent years as a result of growing exports, household consumption and business investment. Increasing domestic demand, infrastructure spending and capital investment are expected to add to the positive trend in the coming years.
In 2000-10, the Nordic countries – Denmark, Finland, Norway and Sweden – invested a total of EUR 9.48 billion in Poland. Their combined investment ranks fifth after Germany (EUR 16.74 billion), France (EUR 13.92 billion), Luxembourg (EUR 11.76 billion) and the Netherlands (EUR 11.24 billion).
Kongskilde – a Nordic player in the Polish market
A Nordic company that has been active in Poland since 1997 is Kongskilde Polska – a subsidiary of the Danish group Kongskilde Industries A/S (part of DLG Group).
Kongskilde Polska has a large production plant for agricultural machinery that is a two-hour drive from Warsaw.
Kongskilde recently expanded and upgraded its 25,000 m2 assembly hall with the most recent innovative production technologies. Half of this investment was financed by the EU, and the other half was financed through Danske Bank Poland, where Kongskilde Polska has banked for the past nine years.
If you want to hear more about why Kongskilde expanded to Poland and about the company’s collaboration with Danske Bank Poland, click the link below to watch a video with Dariusz Btaszczyk, Managing Director of Kongskilde Polska. In the video, Lars Ekström, General Manager of Danske Bank Poland, also explains why Poland is such an attractive market for Nordic businesses.
Key facts about Poland
- Population of 38 million.
- From 2008 to 2011, GDP rose 15.8%, the highest GDP growth in the EU. Poland’s GDP is also expected to grow faster than the EU average in 2013.
- EU member since 1 January 2004.