We use cookies to make sure our website better meets your expectations.
You can adjust your web browser's settings to stop accepting cookies. For further information, read our cookie policy.
SEARCH
IN Warsaw
Exchange Rates
Warsaw Stock Exchange - Indices
The Warsaw Voice » Business » April 30, 2014
Business & Economy
You have to be logged in to use the ReadSpeaker utility and listen to a text. It's free-of-charge. Just log in to the site or register if you are not registered user yet.
Giants Invest in Africa
April 30, 2014   
Article's tools:
Print

Leading Polish investors in Africa have joined forces to exchange ideas, share expertise and strengthen Poland’s economic ties with African nations.

The project is called the Council of Polish Investors in Africa and was started in March by major Polish companies doing business in Africa. The council is chaired by Jan Kulczyk, the largest Polish private investor in Africa and the founder of the Central and Eastern Europe Development (CEED) Institute. The council’s other members include Jerzy Starak of Polpharma, Roman Karkosik of Krezus, Adam Góral of Asseco Poland, Krzysztof Jałosiński of Zakłady Chemiczne Police (part of Grupa Azoty), Marcin Kubica of Lubawa, and Karol Zarajczyk of Ursus.

According to Kulczyk, in the globalized world of today, physical distance no longer stands in the way of close cooperation. “Africa is looking at Poland and our region with a lot of confidence,” said Kulczyk. “They are impressed by our economic success story and by our determination and enterprise. Compared with the troubled rest of Europe, we offer the freshness and the energy needed to carry out the huge changes Africa is facing. The huge potential in Africa’s developing economy constitutes a unique opportunity that must not go to waste. I trust the Council of Polish Investors in Africa can play a major role in taking advantage of this opportunity.”

The founding members of the Council of Polish Investors in Africa want it to foster an exchange of views and expertise to further stimulate economic ties between Poland and Africa. Paving the way for other Polish companies keen to make their mark in Africa, the council will also seek to work with the public sector and the media.

The Council of Polish Investors in Africa was established during a conference on Polish investment in Africa, organized by the CEED Institute. Topics at the conference included investment prospects and opportunities, in addition to the main obstacles that enterprises from Central and Eastern Europe encounter on markets in Africa.

Adam Góral, CEO of Asseco Poland, told the conference that, while Africa was once seen as one large market, African countries now need a more individual approach. “Africa is a region with many different needs and problems,” Góral said. “That is why it’s important to understand the region, educate each other and work closely together.”

Conference participants agreed that, in order to be successful in Africa, Polish companies need to work with local partners and have the support of Polish diplomats. According to Kulczyk, those investing in Africa should make an effort to understand the culture and traditions of different African countries. “The best way to gather this knowledge is to find a local partner,” said Kulczyk. “I can see opportunities here for both Polish enterprises and European businesses. I believe we should be there in Africa together with the rest of Europe and, in a way, under the EU umbrella.”

During the conference, the CEED Institute unveiled a report entitled New Oil Frontiers: Investors’ Guide to the Oil Sector in Sub-Saharan Africa. The report explores the diversity of Sub-Saharan Africa, with a special focus on the oil sectors of individual countries in the region—in the context of the “hydrocarbon rush” that has swept Africa. Sitting on huge oil deposits—estimated at 130 billion barrels and a further 100 billion barrels yet to be discovered—Sub-Saharan Africa is one of the most important global sources of crude oil. Nearly half the countries in the region have started extracting oil or will do so in the near future, according to the report.

Polish businesses seeking to expand into Africa are backed by the government’s Go Africa program, which is designed to strengthen economic relations between Poland and Africa and promote Polish products in African countries. So far, the program has been launched in Nigeria, Angola, Kenya, Mozambique, Algeria and South Africa, populated by a total of 300 million people. Most of the six countries are located in Sub-Saharan Africa, which is a region of strategic importance to trade and investment. In the coming decades, the region will be home to some of the world’s fastest growing economies and witness a growth of trade. Africa developed very fast during the recent global economic slowdown and Sub-Saharan Africa accounted for six of the world’s 10 fastest growing economies in 2001-2010.
© The Warsaw Voice 2010-2018
E-mail Marketing Powered by SARE