Poland and The Japan Institute for Overseas Investment / Polska i Japoński Instytut Inwestycji Zagranicznych

JOI

On December 13 The Embassy of the Republic of Poland in Tokyo and The Japan Institute for Overseas Investment (JOI) signed a business cooperation agreement extending the agreement from 2008 when The Embassy of the Republic of Poland in Tokyo became a special member of JOI. The agreement has been inked in a very favorable moment for polish entrepreneurs and economy with EUJEPA and Infrastructure cooperation pact entering into force. JOI works closely with Japan Bank for International Cooperation (JBIC) – founder of JOI, who gathers more than 200 most valuable Japanese financial, construction, manufacturing, trading and energy companies. JOI includes major Japanese investors in Poland like Toyota Motors or Hitachi. It brings a major change in presenting and communicating the latest information on Polish economy and investment possibilities. From now they will be distributed to the JOI members by JOI.
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BYD’s new success in Europe / Nowy sukces BYD w Europie

BYD

On December 9 the Chinese company BYD announced that three days earlier it has reached a deal with the Keolis Nederland BV, a dutch subsidiary of global public transport provider on the delivery of 259 electric buses. The growing demand for emission-free public transport in Europe is an opportunity for Chinese electric buses manufacturers. BYD is the direct competitor for the Polish electric bus manufacturer Solaris. In 2019 both Solaris and BYD companies scored a number of contracts in Europe. BYD tried to compete with Solaris in Poland. In 2016 BYD competed with Solaris in the bid for 20 electric busues in Cracow. Both comanies competed again in November 2018 for the much bigger contract for 130 electric buses for Warsaw.The expansion of BYD in Europe can have an impact on Solaris sales and expansion. It should also be noted, that other Chinese bus companies such as Yutong have already entered the European market. BYD’s success can also pave the way to more orders for other Chinese manufacturers. Read More …

EU-Singapore trade agreement and its impact on Poland / Umowa handlowa UE-Singapur i jej wpływ na Polskę

banner_eu-singapore_scaled

On November 14 Council of the European Union released a decision on the conclusion of the Free Trade Agreement between the European Union and the Republic of Singapore that will come into force on November 21. Singapore is EU top trade partner in ASEAN with trade value in goods and services over 100 bln EUR and interesting market with wealthy middle class. Singapore is vibrant regional trade and investment hub that can serve as the gateway to ASEAN countries and other regional markets. Implementation of the new trade and investment agreements with ASEAN countries can be a good alternative for EU companies to trade or investing in China and can increase strategically important diversification and decrease EU dependence on China in the Asia Pacific region.The agreement can boost Polish export in other groups of products and export of services. Singapore is a regional trade hub and can serve a showcase for Polish exporters e.g. of food and agricultural products wishing to enter other ASEAN markets such as Malaysia and Indonesia. Read More …

High hopes for the new Polish ambassador to Japan / Nadzieje związane z polskim ambasadorem w Japonii

JP - PL

On October 1st, 2019 the Polish Minister of Foreign Affairs Jacek Czaputowicz nominated Paweł Milewski as the Polish Ambassador to Japan. The bilateral relations between Poland and Japan could be described as model ones in terms of a volatile international environment.. In the recent four years, two meaningful and important agreements between the countries have been signed. In 2015 Poland and Japan signed The Working Holiday Program and in 2017 the 2017-2020 Action Plan for the implementation of the Strategic Partnership between Poland and Japan was signed. Paweł Milewski inherited a stable (in terms of international relations) environment to extend and intensify Polish actions and bilateral cooperation. His abilities to break through and lobbying within structures of Polish MOFA can turn out very helpful. New mbassador can also play a major role as a skillful initiator and leader in developing new areas for cooperation. Read More …

Poland in Human Rights Council and persecution of Uyghurs in China / Polska w Radzie Praw Człowieka ONZ a prześladowania Ujgurów w Chinach

Polska w Radzie Praw Człowieka ONZ a prześladowania Ujgurów w Chinach

On 17 October, the UN General Assembly voted to elect Poland to the UN Human Rights Council for the 2020-2022 term. HRC produces the Universal Periodic Review (UPR) of the human rights records of all UN Member States. HRC can also issue resolutions condemning human rights abuses and calling states for change. On July 9 2019 twenty-two countries at the United Nations’ top human rights body issued a joint statement urging China to end its mass arbitrary detentions and related violations against Muslims in the Xinjiang region. In response to the letter China mobilized almost forty like-minded countries including Russia, Myanmar, to sign the letter supporting its actions in Xinjiang. The current composition of the HRC packed with authoritarian regimes or countries with poor human rights record strongly undermines the Council’s mandate and ability to perform its basic duties. Poland along with other CEE countries, with exception of Baltics states, have been so far rather silent on the Chinese actions in Xinjiang.Poland as a newly elected member should support the voices calling China to end ethnic cleansing, use the HRC forum to criticize Chinese actions and to join the relevant international initiatives. Read More …

The EU – Japan BRI alternative / Europejsko-japońska alternatywa dla BRI

BRI alternatywa

On September 27 Japan and the EU inked an infrastructure cooperation pact, which is the second meaningful agreement within the last year. The EU pledged the amount of 60bln EUR to support further investments. New pact creates numerous opportunities for the European companies related to the renewable energy sources (RES) to look at the southeast Asia markets. Forecasts provide clear picture – Asia-Pacific region is assumed to possess 60% of global solar installations until 2022 (this includes 112GW in South Asia only). There are a lot of companies in Poland (more than 250) that manufacture complete products or components for windmills, devices for hydropower installations, biomass installations, solar collectors, PV modules, heat pumps and (mainly) devices for biogas plants.The question is if Polish domestic manufacturers will look at the newest opportunities and if Polish government would like to support their efforts. Read More …

PayPal in China – opportunity for Polish SME / PayPal w Chinach szansą dla polskich MŚP

PayPal

At the end of September PayPal received approval from the People’s Bank of China to buy a 70% controlling stake in a domestic payments firm GoPay – Guofubao Information Technology. PayPal is the first foreign firm to enter China’s payment services market. GoPay is a minor player and PayPal will face giant fintech ecosystem that Ant Financial and Tencent have already built. Alipay and WeChat Pay dominate China’s digital payment market with joint 90% share. Competing with Chinese giants in the area of domestic payments can be difficult but PayPal as a well recognized platform both in China and abroad can use its position to snatch the cross-border payment services from the competitors.Polish small and medium companies (SME) face multiple challenges while trying to export to China. Using PayPal services in China for many Polish businesses can be much easier than using services provided by Chinese companies or global players and helpful in the diversification of the sales channels.Read More …

Polsteam’s Chinese dilemma / Chiński dylemat PŻM

Polsteam

On September 21 media outlets reported, that two months earlier in the internal Bulletin Paweł Brzeziński, the administrative commissioner of the polish shipping company Polsteam, bluntly criticized the government’s project of building in Polish shipyards two modern RoPax ferries. Brzeziński complained, that project of timely building in Polish shipyards is unrealistic given financial resources provided and existing infrastructure. He suggested placing orders abroad and altought the location of production was not named China was one of the obvious choices. Current Polish government have been promising revival Polish shipyards. The declarations however hit the tough economic realities and little progress has been made so far. The revival of Polish shipbuilding industry needs time and significant financial resources, while management of PŻM needs cost and time effective solution to compete with foreign operators to avoid being pushed out of market. Ordering vessels in China is a viable option. Three years have been lost for industry and now ministry and PŻM management face difficult choice. Read More …

The Polish (in)visible strategy towards Japan – soft power / Polska (nie)widoczna strategia wobec Japonii – soft power

SOft p

EUJEPA creates new opportunities for Polish business in Japan and they can be
amplified by the country’s positive image. Undoubtedly Poland has a positive image in Japan. Nonetheless, the lack of well-calculated and (possibly) successful national branding is a big issue. There are also several serious issues that limit the potential of using Poland’s positive image as tool in boosting national soft power: 1) insufficient funding, manifested in searching for entities, that will sponsor a selected embassy’s publications; 2) highly insufficient activity of Polish embassy in social media. The lack of strategy for national branding and misreading by MOFA what soft power is can prevent it from being used as a significant component of the public diplomacy. Japan still recognizes Poland as an ally and a reliable country, and even if Japanese businesses aren’t involved in Poland on a large scale, the successful PD could intensify this involvement in the foreseeable future – not to mention possible political benefits. Read More …

New Confucius Institute branch in Warsaw / Nowy Instytut Konfucjusza w Warszawie

On September 23 Warsaw Institute of Technology announced the establishment of the Confucius Institute in cooperation with Jiaotong University. The operations of the new branch will cover not only providing Chinese language courses, organizing workshops and other cultural or social events but will also include business consulting services and workshops in the Chinese economy, law, and business environment. The activities of the CI raise growing anxiety among scholars, think tank analysts, politicians and public opinion in many democratic countries. While in many countries CI is in retreat or under growing pressure in Poland their branches thrive. The increased presence of the CI or other Chinese state and CPC sponsored or supported organizations in Poland and growing number of their activities greatly facilitate the Chinese official and often misleading narrative on China’s state foreign policy and domestic situation to gain prominence in the public discourse. Being offered financial support from the Chinese side Polish scholars and think tank analysts often choose to be silent on issues considered as sensitive by CPC officials. Read More …