At EXPO Dubai during the Polish-Arab Economic Forum, Poland signed bilateral agreements with partners from the United Arab Emirates (UAE) and strengthened its export and investment potential in the Middle East. The forum was organized by the Polish Investment and Trade association, which was responsible for the participation of Poland at Expo 2020 Dubai.
Held on December 6, the event was attended by representatives of the highest state authorities and institutions, entrepreneurs and experts. The 650 participants held a series of business meetings and took part in export and investment panels. The event was opened by Grzegorz Słomkowski, Vice President of the Polish Investment and Trade Agency, who stressed that the Polish-Arab Economic Forum was the main business event related to Poland’s presence at Expo 2020 Dubai.
Grzegorz Piechowiak, the Secretary of State in the Ministry of Development and Technology said Poland wants to develop good relations with Arab countries. “We perceive Arab countries as a very prospective and exceptionally attractive market with over 400 million inhabitants,” Piechowiak said, noting that Arab states attach great importance to transforming their economies. “This, in turn, creates great opportunities for Polish entrepreneurs who have a lot to offer to foreign partners,” he said
“Modern technologies are key in establishing cooperation: green energy, digital economy and food security. I would like to assure you that the internationalization of the Polish economy, both in terms of exports and investments, is one of the priorities of the Ministry of Development and Technology. I am convinced that this meeting will strengthen Polish-Arab economic ties and result in many joint business projects,” Piechowiak added.
The opening session of the Polish-Arab Economic Forum was also attended by Thani bin Ahmed Al Zeyoudi, Minister of State for Foreign Trade of the United Arab Emirates. In his speech, he mentioned the 50th anniversary of the founding of the UAE, which coincided with the culmination of Poland’s participation in Expo 2020 Dubai.
Thani bin Ahmed Al Zeyoudi said that Poland was a trusted partner and that he saw a wide field for cooperation in the sectors of e-commerce, fintech, food safety, transport and many other industries, transforming into a circular economy. He said the UAE is open to investment, creating conditions for the development of startups, and pointed to one of the most innovative solutions – a digital platform that allows businesses to set up online companies in a few days.
Report on Poland’s cooperation with Arab countries
During the Forum, a report from the Warsaw School of Economics on Poland’s cooperation with Arab countries was presented. Since 2010, it read, the level of cooperation between regions has been systematically increasing.
Arkadiusz Kowalski, Head of the Department of East Asian Economics Research at the Warsaw School of Economics, said Poland exports more than it imports. The value of trade between the countries in 2020 was $725.9 million, of which $615.7 million is the value of Polish exports to the UAE.
Saudi Arabia, the Arab Emirates and Algeria are the main export destinations. Biogen, Comarch and INGLOT shared information on the possibility of running a business in the Middle East region.
Signing of bilateral agreements
During the plenary and treaty session, three agreements were concluded between institutions from Poland and the UAE. The first MOU agreement was signed by the Vice President of the Polish Investment and Trade Agency, Grzegorz Słomkowski, with the President of DMCC, Ahmed Bin Sulay.
DMCC is a dedicated global hub for over 19,000 companies across a wide variety of industries and sectors, from agro services, energy and financial services to diamonds, gold and base metals.
Thanks to this agreement, Polish companies will be able to more easily establish lasting trade relations directly with Dubai, UAE and key commodity markets in the world.
The second agreement was concluded by export credit insurers from Poland and the UAE. The documents were signed by Janusz Władyczak, President of the Export Credit Insurance Corporation (KUKE) and Massimo Falcioni, President of Etihad Credit Insurance (ECI). The cooperation between KUKE and ECI will provide support to those companies that are interested in exporting to partner markets.
At the plenary session, an agreement was also signed between the National Chamber of Commerce and the Federation of Chambers of Commerce and Industry of the UAE.
It was a renewal and detailing of an earlier contract from 2009. The parties also signed an annex to this agreement creating the Emirates-Polish Business Council. Thus began the process of formally establishing the structure of the business council and its members from both sides. The Federation and the Polish Chamber of Commerce sees the creation of the council as an important instrument to activate bilateral contacts and business relations between Poland and the UAE.
photo credit: FB Poland at EXPO DUBAI / Polish Investment & Trade Agency