Selling in Poland could be a good choice. There are numerous opportunities for exporting companies in a country that has long been a favourite destination for Italian products.
Italian products and services are highly appreciated here, finding an almost natural outlet market.
In spite of a difficult scenario for international trade, exchanges between Italy and Poland exceeded 21 billion euros in 2020: a positive figure that has reconfirmed our country as the third largest supplier. A leading role that has been strengthened over the last 30 years, a period in which Italy has come to be Poland’s second largest trading partner within the European Union, right after Germany.
With more than 38 million inhabitants and a strategic position in Central and Eastern Europe, Poland has experienced significant economic development since the 1990s thanks to the expansive policies promoted by the state authorities.
Access to European funds and the great openness to foreign investment have enabled a decisive growth in the industrial and service sectors, offering numerous business opportunities to foreign companies that have long established a presence here.
Many Italian companies are present here: there are more than 100,000 people employed in Poland by Italian companies or companies in which Italian companies have a stake. Particularly important from this point of view are those in the automotive sector, where numerous sub-suppliers of our major industrial groups are concentrated.
But what are the other industries in which to invest? Which products are the most demanded?
While dependence on coal is still very high, the Polish energy sector has become more aware in recent years. The need is to convert existing plants, increasing their efficiency and switching to renewable sources (including wind, hydro, solar and biomass).
The country is called upon to reduce polluting emissions and guarantee greater energy security, in accordance with the goals set by the European Union for member countries. The objective, which the authorities are pursuing with the involvement of foreign companies, translates into significant business opportunities for producers of technologies intended for this market: a chance that has so far been little exploited by Italian companies.
Capital goods are one of the most important items of our exports to Poland. Despite a contraction in 2020, sales of these goods remained above EUR 2 billion, demonstrating the appreciation of Italian machinery and electrical equipment.
Other opportunities can be found in the chemical sector: including plastics, Poland is a major importer of foreign chemical products. Although slightly down on 2019, our exports in this field exceeded €1 billion during the past months. On the other hand, sales of pharmaceutical products and preparations increased, reaching a value of around €624 million, as reported by infoMercatiEsteri.
Another sector that has experienced extraordinary increase of exports in Poland is the food industry. The growth in purchasing power of Polish consumers over the years has favoured a change in eating habits: a framework in which quality Italian products have found more and more space.
The excellence of our gastronomy is considered synonymous with taste and health, and the increasing attention to healthy food is rewarding organic one in particular.
One product sector that has seen a real exploit in recent years is that of wine: in the face of a general decline in foreign sales in 2020, Italian wine exports have maintained their leadership position in Poland.
There is no shortage of valuable opportunities for the many companies that have made exports their distinctive feature: capital goods, food & beverage and components for the automotive sector are undoubtedly the main items of our exports here.
However, the Polish market is also an ideal destination for many other Italian products, with interesting growth margins: an example is that of the aforementioned technologies for energy efficiency and environmental sustainability, which could find space in the years to come.