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The Warsaw Voice » Business » June 27, 2013
Business & Economy
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Polish-Portuguese Trade Grows
June 27, 2013   
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Despite the economic woes besetting Portugal, companies from that country are keen to do business with their Polish counterparts and to invest here.

Over the past six years, trade between Poland and Portugal has grown dynamically. Portuguese businesses are also increasingly eager to invest on the Polish market. Poland is the most important market in Central and Eastern Europe for Portuguese foreign direct investment. Since 2005 the Portuguese have invested around 1.4 billion euros in Poland. Portuguese businesses are active in many sectors, including retail and distribution, banking, renewable energy, construction, real estate, manufacturing, and services. Thanks to the resilience of the Polish economy, the country’s strategic importance and its friendly business climate toward Portuguese firms, interest in investing in Poland is continuing among Portuguese businesses.

Likewise, Portugal is an attractive market for many Polish firms. Although the value of Polish investment in Portugal is still low, the number of businesses exporting their products to that country is on the rise.

The number of Polish companies exporting to Portugal stood at 1,021 in 2011, 73 more than in 2010, according to the Trade and Investment Promotion Department at the Polish embassy in Lisbon. In 2011, Polish-Portuguese trade was worth 875 million euros.

Despite an increase in imports from Portugal, the balance of trade remained positive for Poland, with a surplus of 78.1 million euros.

The Polish-Portuguese Chamber of Commerce (PPCC), set up in 2008 by 22 firms, has been actively supporting the development of business relations between the two countries. In the five years since its inception, there has been a tenfold increase—to more than 200—in the chamber’s members. At present the PPCC is the sixth largest international chamber of commerce active in Poland and one of Portugal’s largest bilateral chambers of commerce in the world. “The present-day economic situation in Portugal may contribute to a growth in interest in Poland on the part of Portuguese investors,” said Pedro Pereira da Silva, president of the PPCC. “It also creates an opportunity for Polish businesses to enter a new market.”

Portugal recently implemented a number of reforms designed to improve the business climate, including import and export procedures, da Silva said.

“This is reflected in the World Bank’s latest Doing Business 2013 report, which compares the business environment among countries across the world,” he said. “According to the report, Portugal ranks 30th in terms of ease of doing business, while Poland is in 55th place.”

One of the flagship events organized by the PPCC is the annual Portuguese Week held in Warsaw under the slogan “Flavors of Portugal.” Its objective is to promote Portugal by showing off its cuisine, wine-making tradition, culture, products and services.
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