The Katowice Special Economic Zone (KSEZ) had a very good score during the first half of 2014. There were twice as many new investments over the six months than in twelve months of 2013. The KSEZ’s authorities expect a few more projects this year despite the new regulations concerning the tax incentives, which came into force on 1st of July 2014.
The Katowice Special Economic Zone acquired 29 new investment projects in 2013. Investors obliged themselves to invest over PLN 1,5 billion and hire almost 1 300 employees. In the first half of 2014, 58 new permits were given worth approximately PLN 2,5 billion. The investors will create 2 600 new workplaces and will also keep 13 000 existing workplaces.
The impressive score resulted from the modification of a so-called regional aid map which specifies the maximum ceiling of permitted state aid. Until 30th of June this year, investors could apply for 40 percent exceptions of the total investment costs in case of large investors, 50% for medium-sized enterprises and 60% discount for small companies. The state help was reduced since the 1st of July and now the investors can benefit from 25%, 35% and 45% aid limits respectively.
„The modification of the state aid’s ceiling should not affect the attractiveness of our zone. Of course, we do not expect the second half of the year will be as exceptionally good as the first one, also because of the new regulations specifying the new rules of investing which are not ready yet” – Witold Uhma, representative of the KSEZ, told to the Polish Press Agency.
It is expected the regulations will be prepared by the economy government department in a few weeks. The zone authorities claim that the state aid is only one out of several factors which are considered by investors during the investment process and decision making. They point out that the KSEZ’s investors benefit from the best transport network in the country, well-educated work force and well-developed infrastructure. According to the zone representatives, several investors negotiate terms of permits for new projects at present.
One of the most expected investments is a new car model production (from the B segment) to be manufactured in the Fiat Auto Poland’s plant located in the Katowice Special Economic Zone. To convince the cars manufacturer to invest in the zone, the Polish government decided to expand the KSEZ by the area on which the existing factory of Fiat is located. After all, the company has not yet decided to invest.