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The Warsaw Voice » Business » December 21, 2011
Business & Economy
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Foreign Firms Invest in Innovation
December 21, 2011   
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A number of foreign companies are planning to invest in innovative projects in Poland. United Technologies Corp. (UTC) of the United States has announced plans to build aviation innovation centers, and several automotive companies including Delphi are also thinking of new projects in this country.

UTC is planning multimillion-dollar projects, in addition to orders for laboratories and universities of technology, followed by technological service exports. The corporation has a work force of more than 200,000 in 71 countries and its global sales totaled $54 billion in 2010. In Poland, companies from the UTC group are among leading businesses in the aerospace sector. They include PZL Mielec Sikorsky Aircraft, which builds Black Hawk helicopters; the WSK factory in Rzeszów, which makes aircraft drives; Pratt & Whitney Kalisz, a supplier of engine components; PZL Wrocław-Hamilton Sundstrand, a manufacturer of hydraulic components and control systems, and HS Rzeszów, a producer of auxiliary engines for aircraft. The Polish factories of the American corporation employ nearly 9,000 workers between them and have so far invested around $1 billion in the development of their production facilities.

Hamilton Sundstrand is launching several innovative projects. A design center that will employ 350 engineers is being created at PZL Wrocław, a company that UTC acquired in 2011. Another HS factory, in Rzeszów, employs 100 more constructors specializing in auxiliary aircraft engines. PZL Mielec Sikorsky Aircraft is also thinking of developing a design office.

Other foreign companies active in Poland are also investing in development and innovation. Delphi, a leading global supplier of electronics and technologies for the automotive industry, began building a new factory near Warsaw in October last year. An engine accessory plant is scheduled for completion by the middle of this year, with the investor planning to hire a staff of 500.

The number of large automotive projects is growing across the country. In October 2011, South Korean corporation Mando, which produces braking and steering systems, began constructing a zl.400 million factory near the southwestern city of Wałbrzych, Lower Silesia province. That same month Italian company Brembo launched a new factory in D±browa Górnicza, Silesia province, to manufacture disc brakes for cars and motorcycles.

“In 2011, we finalized seven projects in the automotive sector with a combined value of almost 533 million euros; they will make it possible to create a total of 965 new jobs,” said Krystyna Olesińska of the Polish Information and Foreign Investment Agency (PAIiIZ), which provides services to foreign companies investing in Poland.
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