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The Warsaw Voice » Business » February 4, 2009
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SEZ Investment Takes a Hit
February 4, 2009 By L.¯.    
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Businesses announced they intended to invest zl.12.6 billion in Poland's special economic zones (SEZs) last year. This year's results, however, are going to be less impressive if draft estimates of zl.6.2 billion are any guide. Meanwhile, only 138 permits to start businesses in the zones are expected to be issued this year compared with 207 last year. Job creation is shaping up the same way, with estimates down to 13,000 from 20,000.

The authorities responsible for some zones say they are negotiating substantial projects that have been left out of the calculations. The outcome of these is uncertain. Meanwhile, some negotiations that have reached an advanced stage might yet come to nothing should the world economic situation frighten investors away. The drop is likely to be particularly acute in those zones hosting businesses from the industries most severely affected by the international economic downturn.

One of the biggest losers is the Starachowice zone in the south of the country. This zone attracted zl.1.15 billion last year but is only expecting zl.150-250 million this year. The Wałbrzych zone, in the southwestern corner of the country, is another. Permits were issued to start zl.2.6 billion worth of new projects last year. This year's figure will only be one fifth of that.
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