OECD Report – Poland: Investment in infrastructure and skills will support higher living standards and greater well-being
Polish economic growth remains solid and unemployment is decreasing, but further investments in infrastructure and skills will be essential to sustain a continuing improvement in living standards, environmental quality and well-being, according to the latest OECD Economic Survey of Poland.
The Survey, presented in Warsaw today by OECD Chief Economist Catherine L. Mann and Poland’s Deputy Prime Minister Mateusz Morawiecki, marks the 20th anniversary since Poland joined the OECD. It underlines the tremendous progress made toward convergence with higher-income countries over the past two decades, but also points out the challenges remaining to, strengthen employment and job quality, improve the business environment and boost infrastructure, as well as ensure sound public finances.
“Poland has made remarkable progress over the 20 years since it joined the OECD, delivering levels of well-being and quality of life that have never before been experienced,” Ms Mann said. “During the time when most countries have been struggling to bounce back from the global economic crisis, the Polish economy has reported strong growth, driving down unemployment. The challenge going forward is to find the policy mix to promote the transition to an economy based on higher technologies and skills, making growth stronger, greener and more inclusive.”
This reform agenda and the new government’s policy priorities – including a new child benefit – involve higher spending. To help finance this, the Survey proposes options for wide-ranging tax reform, including the withdrawal of reduced VAT rates and exemptions, increased use of property and green taxes and strengthening the tax administration. Boosting skills will lead to higher productivity and employment growth, according to the Survey. Continuing the expansion of access to early childhood education, strengthening support for weaker students and better integrating workplace training into vocational education will be key.
Better opportunities to combine professional and family lives are needed to allow more women into the workforce. In addition to more childcare facilities, long-term care services are also needed. The ongoing reform raising the statutory pension age in stages is needed to strengthen employment of seniors and avoid old-age poverty. Envisaged possibilities to retire early should be equal for men and women and should not involve financial incentives for take-up.
To improve infrastructure investment, Poland should better integrate environmental and health criteria to the project selection and evaluation process, ensure stable financing for public transport infrastructure investment and maintenance, and improve framework conditions for investment in renewable energy. Providing support to local governments running infrastructure projects and strengthening local governance capacities would improve infrastructure delivery.
Source: AICEP Portugal Global
Bank Millennium: Leasing Eko Energia PRO – energy-efficient business with a bonus growing in instalments
In March Millennium Leasing launched Leasing Eko Energia PRO – a new release of a long-standing programme promoting energy-efficient business in Poland. It allows getting up to 5% bonus in financing energy-efficient machines and equipment. The product was developed in cooperation with the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development.
Leasing Eko Energia PRO offers financial benefits resulting from engaging in energy-efficient business. By choosing machines and equipment, which use little energy, representatives of micro, small and medium companies can get a flexible bonus of 3, 4 or 5%, growing over the years depending on financing maturity. The decision regarding financing of assets worth up to PLN 350,000 is lightning-fast – it can be taken seconds after gathering information about the transaction. The Leasing Eko Energia PRO programme is also supported by Surety Funds available practically anywhere in Poland (in 13 Voivodeships). They offer additional financing support, eliminating i.a. the requirement to provide downpayment.
Leasing Eko Energia PRO involves simple procedures, quality of service and care for the environment. – We aim to support Polish businesses in financing technologies, which contribute to reducing consumption of energy. We keep monitoring not only the amount of energy saved but also the quality of service. We have introduced i.a. new procedures, thanks to which a decision concerning financing of assets worth up to PLN 350,000 is available already in a dozen-or-so seconds. Investing in energy-efficient machines and equipment does not only help reduce costs. Ultimately it makes Polish companies more competitive in a business environment, in which striving to improve the quality of the environment is not just a postulate. – Wojciech Rybak, CEO of Millennium Leasing said.
The company began promoting energy-efficient solutions for Polish businesses back in 2011 with the Polish Sustainable Energy Financing Facility (PolSEFF) programme. At that time 461 projects were implemented with the total value of signed agreements standing at 50 million euro. The success of these efforts can be calculated in terms of the spectacular savings attained, equivalent to average annual consumption of electricity by more than 26,000 households (approx. 50 000 MWh). Reduction of CO2 emissions was equivalent to average annual emission by more than 18,500 cars (approx. 36 tons of CO2).
Meeting between the International Group of Chamber of Commerce (IGCC) and Finance Minister Mr. Pawel Szałamacha
On 24th February 2016 Mr. Tiago Costa and Mr. Wojciech Baczynski represented the PPCC in a meeting of representatives of the biggest Chambers of Commerce in Poland with the new Finance Minister Mr Pawel Szałamacha. This meeting was an opportunity to get to know the plans and priorities of the Ministry in the area of finance and fiscal policy, as well as to present the activities of the Chambers and investors affiliated to our organizations. The Minister of Finance outlined the priorities of the Ministry, including the planned changes to the taxation in banking and retail areas. At the same time he stressed that, from the point of view of the Ministry, the most important is to increase the efficiency of existing fiscal tools and offices dedicated to these purposes, rather than introduce changes in the existing laws and systems.
The minister also answered numerous questions, among others about the newly introduced taxes and other issues that are important from the point of view of doing business in Poland.
The participants of the meeting expressed their openness to dialogue and willingness to cooperate.
Wizz air and Ryanair will open a Warsaw-Porto route in 2016!
Wizz Air, the largest low-cost airline in Central and Eastern Europe, announced a new route from Warsaw to Porto, Portugal. The new service will commence on 15th May and operate with two weekly flights, on Wednesdays and Sundays.
Ryanair also announced they will start operating a new route Warsaw-Porto in the last quarter of 2016. They’ve also announced a reinforcement of their operation in Porto, by launching additional flights to Barcelona, Milan, Brussels and Madrid.
This comes as a result of the increasing visibility of Porto as a touristic destination of excellence and a need to multiply the connections between Porto and the biggest European business hubs.
PPCC @ Portugal Exportador 2015
The PPCC was present at Portugal Exportador 2015, represented by Mr, Wojciech Baczynski, PPCC Secretary General.
During the event, the PPCC had a stand in the space dedicated to the Portuguese Chambers of Commerce operating abroad. Here, it was possible to have several meetings with PPCC Member companies and with many companies that aim to expand their activity to Poland. This testifies that Poland remains one of the most attractive European markets for the Portuguese companies.
The Embassy of the Republic of Poland in Lisbon was also present in the event, having its own stand in the fair’s section dedicated to foreign embassies in Portugal.
A seminar about the Polish market also took place during Portugal Exportador 2015. The seminar counted with the participation, has speakers, of Mr. Wojciech Baczynski and representatives of the Polish Republic in Lisbon, Jerónimo Martins, Novo Banco and AICEP.
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