Poland fifth place globally for greenfield investments in 2020 - report

Poland is the fifth globally with regard to the value of greenfield investment projects announced in 2020, according to a report by the United Nations Conference on Trade and Development (UNCTAD).

Poland was second only to the United States, UK and China outside the EU.

The report shows that in 2020, investment outlays fell by 35 percent globally. In the case of developed economies, the drop in Foreign Direct Investment (FDI) was over a half and in the European Union as much as 73 percent.

According to UNCTAD data, last year Poland attracted direct investments of USD 10 billion, marking a decrease of 7 percent in comparison to a year earlier.

"That gave Poland 23rd place in terms of FDI outlays," said Marek Wasinski, director of the foreign trade team at the Polish Economic Institute (PIE).

"The factors influencing Poland's good result were: size and condition of the economy, its competitiveness despite the pandemic, benefits stemming from EU membership, labour costs and quality of labour force as well as the improving state of infrastructure," he added.

"The pandemic increased global demand for digital infrastructure and services. One of the most valuable projects from this sector is an investment of USD 1.8 billion by the Alphabet company (USA) in Poland via Google," said Jan Strzelecki, an analyst with PIE's foreign trade team.

In its commentary to the report, PIE drew attention to greenfield investments. PIE said that Poland came in second place in the EU in terms of the value of announced greenfield projects, with a value of USD 24.3 million in 2020, just USD 0.6 million less than Germany.

In terms of FDI by Polish firms, the country fared less well. "The outflow of Polish investments abroad stood at almost USD 2 billion (the most since 2017), which put Poland in the 50s globally. This is evidence of lower activity of Polish enterprises abroad and an unwillingness to expand on foreign markets,” Strzelecki added.