Friday, June 25

Growing interest among Polish investors for Malaysia

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KUALA LUMPUR: There is growing interest among Poland’s investors to invest and expand their businesses in Malaysia due to the strategic location, ease at doing business and cost competitiveness, says Polish Ambassador to Malaysia, Krzysztof Debnicki.

He said Malaysia would be a good platform for Polish companies, especially the medium-sized, to begin business forays and also serve as a great gateway for them to venture and seek new opportunities in the Asean region.

“Malaysia is a sensible place (for business) as it is centrally located within Asean and affordable as compared to others. The amenities, facilities and legal system allow Polish companies to conduct business in an efficient and easy way,” he told Bernama in an interview here recently.

Debnicki said investors from the Central European country of some 38 million people were eyeing new opportunities beyond Europe for its next stage of growth, adding that the Asean region with a population of almost 700 million was an important market.

“So far, our main economic relations were with the European Union (EU), particularly Germany,” he added.

According to Debnicki, there were currently 13 Polish companies in Malaysia, including Comarch, an international software company founded in 1993 in Krakow and chemical group PCC Rokita which signed a framework agreement with Malaysia’s Petronas in February last year to build an alkylate oxide plant in Terengganu.

There were also Malaysian investments in Poland by the Employees Provident Fund (EPF), which purchased a retail mall in Katowice (Galeria Katowicka) this year for almost RM1.4 billion and two business buildings in Warsaw (Gdanski Business Centre) for RM942 million.

On the Warsaw-Kuala Lumpur bilateral relations, Debnicki said Poland hoped the two sides could deepen cooperation in areas of economic, tourism, education as well as halal trade, adding that the two-way trade recorded last year was US$944.3 million (US$1=RM4.19).

The ambassador hopes active engagement could take place between the two countries next year, especially at government and business delegation levels.

He said the Polish Foreign Trade Office’s newly opened bureau in Kuala Lumpur was aimed at enhancing business relations between Polish and Malaysian companies.

Since Poland is a member of the EU, Debnicki hoped Malaysia could be a part of the free trade agreement with EU, which indirectly could help to strengthen economic ties with Poland.

To enhance Poland-Malaysia political relations, the ambassador suggested an inter-parliamentary cooperation to be developed, which would help expand bilateral ties between the two countries.

“We hope for a Polish parliamentary delegation to come to Malaysia next year,” he added.

On education, Debnicki said his embassy was currently working on a memorandum of understanding on higher education between Poland and Malaysia to be inked early next year to promote exchange of students to strengthen people-to-people contacts. — Bernama