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American

SPRING 2017

Vol. XXVII, No. 2 • ISSN 1506-3240

Investor amcham.pl

IF I DIDN’T HAVE YOU

Without foreign investors, Poland, the sixth largest economy in the EU, would not have been the success it is today INSIDE: PICTURES FROM AMCHAM EVENTS FROM FEBRUARY TO APRIL


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AMERICAN INVESTOR SPRING 2017


In this issue SPRING 2017  Vol. XXVII No. 2 Monthly Meeting February Fond of funds The Polish government means business, p. 14 April Tax climax The government plans to optimize fiscal policy, p. 16 Focus Looking into the future The world economy will continue to grow in 2017, p. 18 Men with a plan Economic rationale should prevail in time of uncertainty, p. 19 Company profile Unlimited desire for success Grzegorz Hajdarowicz, CEO of Gremi Holding, talks about his business philosophy and success, p. 20 Bespoke and personal Paul Fogo and Marcin Jakubaszek, partners at JF Legal, talk about how they create value for clients with their independent law firm, p. 22 On the way up Alwyn Jacobus de Lange, managing director for Central and Eastern Europe at Vistra Poland, talks about the company's progress, p. 24 Hands across the ocean Krzysztof Wierzbowski, managing partner at Wierzbowski Eversheds Sutherland, and Mark Wasserman, managing partner at Eversheds Sutherland US, talk about what the combination of Eversheds and Sutherland Asbill Brennan, means for business, p. 26

COVER STORY

IF I DIDN’T HAVE YOU Without foreign investors, Poland, the sixth largest economy in the EU, would not have been the success it is today, p. 8

Complete confidence Robert Krygsman, general manager of Hilton Warsaw Hotel & Convention Center, talks about what is means to be a part of the Warsaw’s tourism market, p. 28 Know your risks Bartosz Pastuszka, managing director of IBBC Group, part of Pinkerton, talks about the growing market of security and risk management services, p. 30

Expert I robot Will there be laws on artificial intelligence? p. 32 Tackling abuse of the system A proposed new system may make it more difficult for legitimate employers to hire workers from abroad, p. 33 Danger zone New regulations governing taxes spell trouble, p. 34 The benefits of totalization Understanding the US and Polish social security systems, p. 35 A brave new world Companies need proactive foreign policies, p. 36 The power of a commission Real estate re-privatization decisions in Warsaw may be revoked, p. 37 Unhealthy menace Cybercrime poses big challenges for the Polish healthcare system, p. 38

Departments: Letter from the Chairman, p. 3, Newsline, p. 4, Agenda, p. 6, AmCham Committee Guide, p. 7, Photo Coverage of AmCham Events, pp. 40-52. SPRING 2017 AMERICAN INVESTOR

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Your American

YOUR AMCHAM

On-line resources to AmCham

BoArd oF dirEctors Tony HousH – APCO Worldwide Chairman

Joanna Bensz – Lockheed Martin Global Inc. Vice Chair

RoBeRT BednaRski – Facebook Vice Chair

JoHn LyncH – Lynka Treasurer

Rick Lada – Individual Member Secretary

MEMBERS Magdalena BurnatMikosz Deloitte

Jolanta Jaworska IBM Poland & Baltics

Roman Rewald

Sławomir Sikora Citi Handlowy

Marek Szydłowski TVN S.A.

Joseph Wancer BGŻ BNP Paribas

Weil Gotshal & Manges

Magdalena PavlakChiaradia ERM Polska

Advisory council

Check out our revamped website, with enhanced functionality including intuitive grouping of topic threads and multimedia coverage of our events! MEMBERS This link includes access to AmCham community news, the member directory, information on how to become a member, and a list of companies and individuals who have received AmCham awards. EVENTS The link Upcoming Events will take you to announcements of our future events. Past Events will take you to our events archive, which includes photo and multimedia coverage of selected events. COMMITTEES AmCham’s 13 committees are the heart of the organization, providing a forum for business leaders with similar interests to network, share best practices, and discuss relevant topics and issues. This enables active participation and input on matters of vital importance to members. The link will take you to a pop-up menu to choose the committee of interest to you. MEDIA This link will take you to five databases: AmCham in the Press is a database of press clippings about AmCham in Poland. American Investor will take you to a .pdf version of our print quarterly, American Investor, including the most recent edi-

tion as well as archives of past issues. Video Clips will take you to multimedia coverage of selected AmCham events. AmCham Media Contacts provides contact information for members of the media. Galleries will take you directly to the vast archive of photo coverage of our events. ADVOCACY This link will take you to the archive of our position papers, policy statements, official letters to government ministers, and research papers—all produced in our effort to build a more open and business-friendly economic environment. REGIONS AmCham may be closer than you think. Apart from Warsaw, AmCham has three regional branches, which are active all year long and offer many exciting opportunities to interface with regional business leaders and politicians. Use the Regions menu to find out more about our services in Gdańsk and northern Poland, Kraków & Katowice and southern Poland, and Wrocław and Lower Silesia. USEFUL LINKS This section provides links to other important US business organizations, such as the US Chamber of Commerce and the American Chamber of Commerce to the European Union, and other organizations working for the benefit of transatlantic trade and investment relations.

What’s on

amcham.pl

Your online guide to AmCham activities

AmchAm Auditor

© American Chamber of Commerce in Poland 2017. All rights reserved. 2

AMERICAN INVESTOR SPRING 2017


Investor Letter from the Chairman

Dear AmCham members and AI readers,

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017 is proving to be as busy as forecast at AmCham. The pace of meetings, discussions, reports and governmental consultation is high and, I believe, quite productive. A key element of our activity has been emphasizing the positive role of foreign direct investment in Poland over the past quarter of a century. AmCham, along with a wide range of international Chambers partners, worked with Polityka Insight to develop a report assessing the impact of FDI in Poland. The report, available in Polish and English, was launched at the Ministry of Development in March and has been the subject of a number of briefings and meetings in Warsaw and around the country since its release. The picture is clear: FDI has dramatically affected the development and structure of the Polish economy. FDI, in particular US FDI, has had a transformational impact on the economy, workforce and national development. From aerospace to Factory 4.0 and shared service centers to R&D, American capital has helped reshape the Polish market and its place in the world economy. Our member companies were among the first major investors in Poland and many have continued to reinvest in the country, making it a key European or global hub of operations. US FDI was the leader in 2016 according to PAIH and we expect the current year to deliver good results as well. The new Trump Administration in Washington has also been a subject of discussion, questions and planning during the first few months of the year. As the work of the new Congress gets underway, we have had the opportunity to highlight US success in Poland and underline the great strategic cooperation between our two countries to a wide range of elected officials. There have been multiple Congressional delTony Housh AMCHAM CHAIRMAN egations with members from the Armed Services, Foreign Affairs, Financial Services, Transportation and Infrastructure and Appropriations Committees receiving briefings and insight from AmCham. We look forward to continuing this dialogue as members of the Trump Administration visit Poland. Of course, matters close to home are receiving our attention. We have had a number of meetings with senior policy and investment officials as well as members of their teams, including Deputy Finance Minister Paweł Gruza, Polish Development Fund CEO Paweł Borys, Deputy Development Minister Tadeusz Kosciński among others. AmCham will be present with our trademark AmCham Diner at the European Economic Congress in Katowice in May, ABSL’s annual event in Łódź and of course at our Independence Day event in June. Wherever we are, the message is the same: quality investment, growth and job creation require the right ecosystem for investors. Stability of laws, transparency of decision making and equal treatment are critical to continuing the shared success story of the Polish economy and our investment community. See you all soon!

SPRING 2017 AMERICAN INVESTOR

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Newsline YOUR AMCHAM AMCHAM STAFF

Dorota Dabrowski Managing Director director@amcham.pl

Łukasz Dominiak

Public Policy Assistant lukasz.dominiak@amcham.pl

Marzena Drela

Deputy Director marzena.drela@amcham.pl

Anita Kowalska

Events & Media Manager anita.kowalska@amcham.pl

Robert Kruszyna

Office Manager robert.kruszyna@amcham.pl

Marta Pawlak

Policy Counsel marta.pawlak@amcham.pl

Barbara Pocialik-Malinowska

News from AmCham and its members Amazon

Online retailer Amazon.com will open its fifth logistics center in Poland, in Sosnowiec, Upper Silesia. The new logistics facility will be in the proximity of Germany, Amazon’s main market in Europe. Amazon currently employs over 7,000 people on regular job contracts at its five centers in Poland: three logistics centers in Poznań and Wrocław, a technology development center in Gdańsk, and a web-based technology development center in Warsaw. Jobs created in Poland address candidates with a different range of skills and expertise, from unexperienced people willing to get into training to start basic jobs, to application developers and engineers in such fields of expertise as robotics, among others.

AmCham Poland

Membership and Committees Coordinator barbara.pocialik@amcham.pl

Dorota Serafin

Project Manager dorota.serafin@amcham.pl

Joanna Bojarska-Buchcic AmCham in Kraków & Katowice krakow@amcham.pl

AmCham in Wrocław

Monika Ciesielska-Mróz amcham.wroclaw@pmg.pl

AmCham has started the third edition of 30 Under 30—a mentoring program for 30 young (under 30 years of age) professionals from AmCham member companies. The program gives opportunities for the participants to further their professional skills and careers. Among the speakers are Dorota Dabrowski, Managing Director of AmCham Poland; Michał Potyrała, manager at Ernst & Young; Sonnet Frisbie, Trade and Investment Officer at the US Embassy in Warsaw, and Anna Jakubowski, former general manager of Coca-Cola Poland (in picture above).

EDITOR

Tom Ćwiok tomasz.cwiok@amcham.pl

Printing

Q Invest Ltd +48 22 424 6600 © American Chamber of Commerce in Poland 2017. All rights reserved.

Letters to the editor should be e-mailed to tomasz.cwiok@amcham.pl Front cover: Mateusz Morawiecki, John G. Rice. Photo courtesy of 24/7 Communications.

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AMERICAN INVESTOR SPRING 2017

Dentons

Law firm Dentons advised Enlight Renewable Energy on the construction and multijurisdictional financing of a 49 MW wind farm near the Adriatic port of Split in Croatia. The Warsawbased team led this project as foreign experts, coordinating the work of local advisors in Croatia. Counsel Agnieszka Kulińska, supervised by Arkadiusz Krasnodębski, Poland Managing Partner and Head of the Warsaw and European Energy and Natural Resources practice, provided legal advisory on the preparation of construction and maintenance contracts for the wind farm, including the balance

3M Poland

gdansk@amcham.pl

American Investor is the official publication of the American Chamber of Commerce in Poland. It is a voice for foreign investors and the business community in Poland. The magazine strives to keep our members and other readers up to date by following chamber news and reporting on the leading trends in business and policy. Unless otherwise indicated, all articles written by Tom Ćwiok.

Private equity and investment advisory firm CVC Capital Partners, acquired Żabka Polska from Mid Europa Partners. The investment is subject to customary regulatory approvals. Founded in 1998, Żabka is a leading Polish convenience retailer.

Members on the move

AmCham in Gdańsk

To contact AmCham please write or call: Spektrum Tower, 16th Floor ul. Twarda 18 00-105 Warsaw tel: +48 22 520 5999 fax: +48 22 520 5998 e-mail: office@amcham.pl www.amcham.pl

CVC Capital Partners

The meeting of the AmCham Business Women Group (pictured) in March was hosted by Lana Popović, General Manager Coca-Cola Poland Services, at the company’s offices in Warsaw. It included a presentation by Olga Kozierowska, the founder of the female empowerment organization “Success Written with Lipstick”. The goal of the group is to forge links between women professionals in business and to build a circle of trust to facilitate professional growth and problem-solving with peers outside the business organization.

Alain Simonnet has replaced Sebastian Arana as general manager of 3M Poland. Simonnet, who joined 3M in 1990 has an extensive experience in the company including in top management in sales, marketing and client services. He graduated in mechanical and aviation engineering at École Nationale d'Ingénieurs de Tarbes in France, and also from the Chartered Institute of Marketing. Simoneet is certified in Black Belt Lean Six Sigma.

AmCham/HR Solutions Group

Joanna Bojarska-Buchcic, CEO and founder of HR Solutions Group, has joined AmCham Poland as AmCham Gdańsk director. She will be responsible for AmCham activities in the Tricity and the Pomeranian region, and will serve as the point of contact for AmCham member companies in northern Poland. Bojarska-Buchcic earned her MBA in human resources management from Leon Kozminski Academy of Entrepreneurship and Management. She has an extensive professional experience in HR and management in a number of Polish and foreign companies. She co-founded Metapomoc, a foundation which provides coaching, mentoring and financial aid to young people raised in orphanages who enter adult life.

Dentons

Christopher Rose has joined Dentons as Head of Dentons’ Europe Venture Technology group and a partner in the Corporate and M&A and Private Equity practices. Rose specializes in cross-border private equity and venture capital investments and exits, as well as mergers, acquisitions and joint ventures. He has advised on over 200 transactions on behalf of leading private equity and venture capital investors in Russia, the CEE, the Middle East, Asia and Africa.


New members Companies recently joining AmCham: Chemical company Basell Orlen Polyolefins. Contact: Joseph Tanner, CEO, General Director. Software developer for the insurance industry, Guidewire Software Poland. Contact: Matthew Bryłka, site leader. Language school Little America. Contact: Natalia Goriacheva, owner. Video and e-commerce retailer QVC Poland Global Services. Contact: Adrian Marciszewski, general manager.

of plant agreement, operations and maintenance agreement for the substation, turbine supply agreement and full services agreement. In other news, Dentons was named the best law firm in three categories in the 2017 edition of the Best Law Firm ranking by Rzeczpospolita, one of the largest Polish dailies. In addition, Dentons was picked as the market leader leader in real estate and energy law. The leading practitioners among individually recommended lawyers are Paweł Dębowski, Head of the European Real Estate Practice, and Arkadiusz Krasnodębski, Dentons Poland Managing Partner and Head of the European and Polish Energy and Natural Resources Practices. Dentons was also recommended in tax and public procurement law, with Aldona Kowalczyk, Partner in charge of the Public Procurement practice in Warsaw, additionally receiving an individual recommendation.

mercial arbitration and litigation and employment law disputes. Also, Łaszczuk & Partners was endorsed in intellectual property, highlighting Maciej Łaszczuk and Justyna Szpara in dispute resolution, and Anna Lasocka, counsel, in intellectual property. Łaszczuk & Partners was also ranked first in litigation and arbitration in the 15th edition of the Ranking of Law Firms by the daily Rzeczpospolita, which recognizes the largest and the best law firms in Poland.

PZL Mielec

More than 1,700 employees at PZL Mielec, one of the leading aviation companies in Poland, celebrated the company’s 10th anniversary as a privatised company operated by helicopter manufacturer Sikorsky, a Lockheed Martin company. Sikorsky and its previous parent company United Technologies acquired shares in PZL Mielec from the Polish Government in March 2007. Since privatisation and a USD 150 million investment to improve production facilities and tooling, PZL Mielec sales have increase fivefold. Cabins, pylons and tail cones produced at PZL Mielec are shipped to Sikorsky’s Black Hawk helicopter factory in the United States, and 40 the S-70i Black Hawk variant have been produced for seven international customers. PZL Mielec is now one of the largest defence exporters in Poland. In addition to workers directly employed at the Mielec plant, more than 5,000 other jobs are sustained in Polish supply chain companies, many of which are located in Poland’s Aviation Valley.

Whirlpool

The Whirlpool Corporation has announced that its new dryer line will be produced in the company's industrial facility in Łódź, to ensure "long term competitiveness for Whirlpool dryers throughout Europe, Middle East and Africa region." As a result, the company's factory in Yate, the UK, will refocus production to serve specific local UK and Ireland consumer demand, while another Whirlpool factory, in Amiens, France, will phase-out production.

Cushman & Wakefield

Real estate services firm, Cushman & Wakefield, has been appointed property manager of the Prosta Tower office building in Warsaw, by the building's owner, a real estate fund managed by Credit Suisse Real Estate Investment Management Germany. Prosta Tower is a 19-storey, Class A office building in the Warsaw's business district, offering 6,000 square meters of office space and an underground parking lot. It was built in 2011.

Eversheds Sutherland

Law firm Wierzbowski Eversheds became part of Eversheds Sutherland, a global law firm created by the combination of leading law firms, Eversheds, headquartered in the UK, and Sutherland Asbill & Brennan, based in the U.S. The new structure has over 2,300 lawyers in 61 offices across 29 countries. Eversheds Sutherland ranks in the top 10 in UK listings and top 40 in US global listings.

Łaszczuk & Partners

In March-April, law firm Łaszczuk & Partners won recognition in several international and Polish rankings of law firms. Chambers Europe and Chambers Global recommended the law firm in dispute resolution in Poland, as “well regarded for significant domestic and international arbitration presence, assisting clients with a broad range of commercial disputes, including construction and infrastructure litigation.” In turn, Maciej Łaszczuk, the founding partner and Justyna Szpara, the managing partner, have been recommended as being among the best lawyers in the field of dispute resolution and among the Most in Demand Arbitrators. In addition, Legal 500 EMEA recommended Łaszczuk & Partners as being among the leading firms in the field of dispute resolution. The ranking recognized the law firm’s work in comSPRING 2017 AMERICAN INVESTOR

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Agenda Intelligence from AmCham Committees  EU Affairs

New incentives for business from the Polish Development Fund (PFR) were on the agenda of the AmCham EU Affairs meeting in April with guest speaker Marcin Piasecki, PFR vice president. The discussion covered PFR strategy on capital investments, new incentives for business in Poland that the fund recently announced, and the fund's supervision of high risk investments, available from EU funds.

Energy & Environment

Katarzyna Szwed-Lipińska, director of the Renewable Energy Department at Energy Regulatory Office (URE), Poland's regulator of the power market, met with the AmCham Energy & Environment Committee to talk about the URE's experience managing the Renewable Energy Auction Scheme including a set of improvements that the office resolved to add to the system. One of them, the auctioning system, is a way for renewable energy producers to bid for state aid so their energy production projects are feasible from the economic point of views. In a nutshell, companies who win state aid know how much money they will receive for a specified period of time. The auctioning system, Katarzyna SzwedLipińska argued, is much better than the green certificate system, because it reduces the problem of the oversupply of certificates in the marketplace. The auctioning takes place through an online platform and there are four auctions a year, each them announced in due time by the URE. However, this system is far from perfect and some of the problems were addressed in 2016, when changes were introduced. The most important change was that in the past, every time a company won an auction it tapped into state aid for 15 years. Today the URE president decides how long the state aid lasts instead of a fixed 15 years. The URE is likely to shorten the period with an option to extend it longer in time. Among the problems that so far have failed to have been addressed, but which may be addressed by the URE this year, is the huge room for different interpretations of certain requirements that the winning companies have to meet throughout the time they receive the state aid. This is a big problem, Katarzyna Szwed-Lipińska noted, because if a company has a different understanding than the URE of what it is required to do to continue to receive the aid, it may lose the right to receive the aid and even may be required to return the money it already received. Another problem with the system is that since it is an online platform, its functioning can be disturbed from the outside. It happened last year and this year URE gave itself the right to annul an auction which the office thinks has been hacked and run it again later. Also, instead of one day, the four auctions lined up for this year will last 2-3 days each to give the participants more tim to bid.

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AMERICAN INVESTOR SPRING 2017

Marketing & Communications

The ways in which political campaigns in the media may influence commercial communications were on the agenda of the first Marketing and Communications Committee meeting in March, with guests speakers Tomasz Orczyk, from the Institute of Applied Social Sciences at Warsaw University, and Prof. Jacek Wasilewski, expert in media and mass communications from Warsaw University. Tomasz Orczyk said that one has to be careful when drawing conclusions from political campaigns and applying them to marketing communications because not every idea which is successfully applied in conveying political messages works for conveying commercial messages. The most important lesson from the 2016 presidential elections in the US is not about marketing but about "collective bias"—a phenomenon which occurred when campaigning "in the time of change". Donald Trump had a very simple and effective message referring to America's past—a time which many members of the electorate remember with affection, and during the campaign, connected with the Trump message at a personal level voted for him. The message from another runner, Hillary Clinton, lacked such an emotional component as it focused entirely on the future. However, as a discussion evolved, it was noted that Clinton beat Trump with approximately 3 million popular votes, which in democratic terms was a win, but not big enough to result in victory in the electoral college system. Nevertheless, Orczyk said that in politics, a simple and emotional message is hard to beat by the argument of reason. The speakers at the second March meeting of the Marketing and Communications Committee were Nathaniel Espino, partner at Aldgate Strategy Group, and Paweł Gala, managing director of the media buying agency MEC, who talked about the current situation on the Polish media market. Espino noted that political inclinations of the viewing audience determine the choice of TV stations they watch. Paweł Gala gave an overview on the media market and how advertisers can spend their money in the most effective way.

Tax & Financial Services

In February the AmCham Tax Committee and Financial Services Committee held a breakfast presentation summarising recent changes to tax legislation for businesses. The presenters were Aleksandra Kalinowska, Matthew O’Shaughnessy and Marta Skrodzka, tax advisers from Andersen Tax. The firm drew attention to many new changes including new requirements to obtain withholding tax exemptions, changes to CIT rules on R&D incentives, more rigorous VAT penalties, restructuring of tax administration, and new transfer pricing rules including benchmarking. In turn, in March, the committee held its annual session updating AmCham members on US taxes. This time, Dagmar Gessner-Gaspar and Marten W. Finlator from KPMG’s US Tax Center, Frankfurt am Main, gave an overview of US taxation and current developments and

talked about potential tax reform in the US. A Q&A session and discussion followed the presentations.

Travel & Tourism

Latest trends in travel mobile technology and useful applications available to travelers were on the agenda of the AmCham Travel and Tourism Committee meeting with speakers Frank Wagner, country manager of Deutsche Lufthansa, and Michał Polak, country manager of Sabre Poland, one of the largest application developers for online booking systems. Frank Wagner noted how commercial passenger airlines have evolved since the 1960s in how they manage bookings and where they are heading today with the digitalization of booking services and how airlines compete on digital platforms. Concluding his presentation Wagner said that digital capabilities available during flights for passengers will be critical in attracting new clients and retaining old ones. This is why wireless connections for passengers during flights will be a must on all types of flights—not only long-haul ones. Also, because of that entertainment in-flight systems will soon be on their way out because everybody will use their handheld devices, and even if there will be passengers without them the airline will offer them handheld devices for the duration of the flight. In turn, Michał Polak talked about the technology that is behind digital booking systems, and what it entails for the stakeholders, and the technological trends that will make it even more effective, especially in such instance as flight delays.

Personal finance

Jason Watters and Gabrielle Reilly, from Reilly Financial Advisors held a series of three workshops, entitled A Roadmap to your Successful Financial Future, as a part of a general financial education scheme designed for individual members of AmCham rather than for companies. On the first session, in March, the speakers focused on how to evaluate and determine their goals, how to obtain the tools necessary for creating a financial roadmap to retirement and beyond, and how to create personal balance sheets and income statements. The speakers also gave a short presentation of the basic knowledge on a range of investment vehicles and account types. At the second session, in April, the speakers discussed how individual planners may reach their tangible goals, where to save and how to manage debt, what risks and rewards they may encounter and how they should diversify their asset allocation. The third session, also in April, was devoted to discussing such issues as how saving may help people cope with unexpected life changes, what common mistakes can be made in the process, and how they should plan for health and social security costs. The speakers also talked about the role that financial professionals may play for individuals, including the different roles of brokers, wealth managers, and robo advisors.


For the most recent information about the AmCham Committees and upcoming events visit amcham.pl Agri, Food & FMCG

Mission: To provide a platform for discussing and overcoming issues and identifying opportunities related to operational activity for companies in the agricultural and food sectors in Poland by creating a basis for dialogue and expertise leveraged among producers, sector professionals, experts and decision-makers in the Polish government. Co-Chairs: Piotr Bonisławski, Eli Lilly Polska; Andrzej Pawelczak, Animex.

Business Technology & Services

Mission: To provide a platform for discussing, identifying and addressing common SSC/BPO issues related to hightech operations; to maintain contact with local authorities, educational and governmental institutions to present a unified business perspective and options for cooperation. Co-Chairs: Jacek Stryczyński, Lionbridge; Angelo Pressello, Direct Communication.

Defense & Security

Mission: To discuss issues regarding the defense industry and exchange information, to create a networking forum for members, and to lobby and encourage decision-makers in government. Co-Chairs: Stan Prusiński, Boeing Europe; Marta Frąckowiak, DLA Piper.

Digital Economy

Mission: To provide a forum for innovative companies to support the digital economy in Poland as a key driver of sustainable growth. It aims to raise awareness about the importance of balanced investments in digital infrastructure, fully exploiting digital potential, and increasing competitiveness in the global environment. Co-Chairs: Patrycja Gołos, UPC; Igor Ostrowski, Dentons.

Energy & Environment

Mission: To help members develop their energy and environmental business in Poland. By helping members work collectively to overcome any systemic difficulties encountered in their business the committee aims to increase the level and quality of investment and activity in these sectors. Co-Chairs: Michał Koczalski, CEC Government Relations; Mariusz Mielczarek, GE Central and Eastern Europe.

European Union Affairs

Mission: To provide a platform for discussing business-related issues coming out of the EU, including EU funds; to work with AmCham EU on mutual lobbying initiatives; and to represent member companies before the European Commission and the government of Poland. Co-Chairs: Magdalena Burnat-Mikosz, Deloitte; Jerzy Thieme.

Sustainable Real Estate

Mission: To discuss issues regarding the complexities of the real estate market in Poland, and exchange information. To be an educational and networking forum for members and to lobby and influence legislative departments of the Polish government. Co-Chairs: Halina Więckowska, K&L Gates; Magdalena Pavlak-Chiaradia, ERM Polska.

Health & Pharma

Tax & Financial Services

Mission: To represent the voice and opinions on various issues of the health sector, to discuss conditions, news and challenges of the sector; to provide expertise. Co-Chairs: Ernest Bartosik, Unipharm; Aldona Zygmunt, Pfizer.

Mission: To provide a platform for identifying tax and financial issues and create an educational forum to keep AmCham members informed on current and upcoming legislation. Co-Chairs: Adam Soska, PwC Polska; Marcin Matyka, Norton Rose Fulbright.

Human Resources Management

Travel & Tourism

Mission: To create an information exchange forum of HR professionals to share, discuss and learn about the latest trends in HR management and influence local policy and decision-makers. Co-Chairs: Jolanta Jaworska, IBM Poland; Agata Dulnik, Accenture.

Manufacturing

Mission: To provide a platform for discussing issues and problems related to the manufacturing sector in Poland and to provide networking opportunities; to discuss conditions, news and challenges in the manufacturing sector across Poland; to coordinate with AmCham’s annual Manufacturers’ Forum. Co-Chairs: Joanna Bensz, CH2M Polska; Przemysław Paździorek, 3M Poland.

Marketing & Communications

Mission: To provide a forum for member firms to share knowledge and exchange experiences in marketing, communications and PR, provide educational and networking opportunities for member firms interested in these areas, and serve as an advisory body for AmCham. Co-Chairs: Anya Ogorkiewicz;

Mission: To provide a platform for discussing issues and problems related to travel, leisure and the hospitality industry and to provide networking opportunities and to discuss trends and standards in the industry that will allow members to fully benefit from AmCham. Co-Chairs: Tim Hyland, FCM Travel Solutions; Frank Wagner, Lufthansa Group.

THOUGHT LEADERS

Individuals who are point people and experts for specific areas of interest for AmCham that do not require a formal committee structure or activity level. SME & Entrepreneurship Alain Bobet

Innovation Bogusława Skowroński

Łukasz Kowalski, MSLGroup.

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Cover story Foreign investment

IF I DIDN’T HAVE YOU

Photo courtesy of 24/7 Communications.

Without foreign investors, Poland, the sixth largest economy in the eU, would not have been the success it is today

Mateusz Morawiecki, Deputy Prime Minister, Minister of Development and Finance; John G. Rise, Vice President, GE.

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hen last year, Mateusz Morawiecki, Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Economy and Finance, announced the Responsible Development Strategy (also dubbed the Morawiecki Plan)—his master plan to make the economy of Poland grow faster so, in terms of GDP per capita, it could bridge the gap between it and Western Europe, he troubled many a foreign investor. Minister Morawiecki, on many occasions, suggested that the Polish economy has an unhealthy balance of foreign and domestic capital. He pointed, in a somehow accusatory way, to the fact that 2/3 of Poland’s exports, measured in value, were generated by companies with foreign capital, and that it needed to be changed. “Such rhetoric on the part of the government suggested that there could be an asymmetry in the way the government would treat foreign and domestic investors,” said Marcin Petrykowski, CEO S&P Global Ratings for Poland and CEE, at an FDI-related conference in April. “It was most unfortunate, especially that it coincided withe the unfolding of the Morawiecki Plan and so many investors took notice and were asking questions. From the perspective of investors it was something to be concerned about. Any notion that such an asymmetry should deepen is extremely harmful to both domestic and foreign investors.” surprise, surprise... The unfortunate PR circumstances which surrounded the presentation of the Morawiecki Plan were the main reason why many foreign companies in Poland were flabbergasted when the the Ministry of Development and Finance and GE signed an agreement of strategic cooperation in January. “Signing the document is a confirmation of the joint aspirations of the Polish government and GE aiming at supporting Polish economic growth, industry modernization, performance of current and new investments, implementation of new technologies and supporting Polish labour market,” said the ministry and GE in a press statement. ...or not really But for those who have read the part of the Morawieki Plan that covers the government's expectations of what foreign investors should bring to Poland the choice of GE as a strategic partner should not be a surprise. The company, which came to Poland 25 years ago, has all that the government is looking for. It creates high-tech and R&D jobs. Its work adds value to industries with huge potential for growth both now and in the future: aviation, power generation and power management, to name the few. While

GE came to Poland originally as a consumer finance bank, its further investment projects in technology were model examples of how an independent foreign company could utilize the potential of Poland for business, opening state-of-the-art production plants, building vast networks of suppliers, and working with a vast array of technology schools in the country. Today the GE’s technology hub in Poland is the largest GE Engineering Design Center in Europe and has been successfully run for over 10 years through a public-private partnership with the Polish Institute of Aviation. a good match “The priority of our government is to continuously increase innovation in Polish economy,” Minister Morawiecki said in a statement for the press, after the signing of the strategic partnership. “We want to advance the added value of products and services that are being developed by local entrepreneurs or in close cooperation with foreign investors that offer unique value and development opportunities. For over 25 years of its operations in Poland General Electric has proven to be a high-level partner for Polish economy, not only by providing high-tech solutions but also presenting confidence and trust in Polish engineering abilities. I am convinced that the next 25 years of our strategic partnership will deliver even greater mutual benefits and GE products developed in Poland will revolutionize international industry and promote the skills and competences of Polish engineers all over the world.” In turn, John G. Rise, Vice President, GE said after the signing ceremony that the 6,500 people that the company has in Poland, are “supporting us and working as the members of the GE team give us the ability to compete here but more importantly even, to compete outside of Poland. We are a global company and we are not going to stop being a global company and we need great teams of people in Poland to help us win everywhere. “We would not have 2,000 engineers in this country if we weren’t seeing quality that matched our global expectations and we choose Poland and choose this center because we find skills and abilities that match up with what we need and what we see around the world.” ambitious goals There is a lot on the table in light of the agreement. The main objective of the strategic cooperation expressed in the signed document is to build a stabile and long-term partnership between the Polish government and GE in the areas of sustainable energy and aviation. The performance of the partnership “shall be realized in the

“I am convinced that the next 25 years of our strategic partnership will deliver even greater mutual benefits and GE products developed in Poland will revolutionize international industry and promote the skills and competences of Polish engineers all over the world.” Mateusz Morawiecki

scope of an open dialogue between the parties, based on mutual trust and predictability,” reads the press statement. “Engagement of research and development centers created by GE in Poland as well as of advanced and innovative technologies manufactured in local facilities will make stability and durability of the implemented solutions possible.” In addition to that, the participants of the agreement also expressed their intention to execute projects “in the scope of research and development with participation of Polish educational institutions and research centers. GE declared its willingness to undertake actions which may guarantee a real

“We would not have 2,000 engineers in this country if we weren’t seeing quality that matched our global expectations and we choose Poland and choose this center because we find skills and abilities that match up with what we need and what we see around the world.” John J. Rise

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Cover story Foreign investment IF I DIDN’T HAVE YOU... • If Poland had not absorbed any foreign direct investment between 1990-2015, the country’s GDP per capita at the end of 2015 would have been 15.6% lower, and amounted to that of Kazakhstan. • Owning to companies with foreign capital in Poland, in 2015, the median salary in the economy was 8.9% higher than it would have been without the impact of FDI on the labor market between 19902015. • Without any FDI in Poland between 1990-2015, the unemployment rate would have been higher by 8.5 percentage points and reached 18% in 2015. The report The Impact of Foreign Direct Investment—Contribution to the Polish Economy in the past quarter century, revealed some compelling facts transfer of technological solutions to Poland and the integration of operations among its manufacturing facilities and domestic research and development centers.” One point of the agreement referred to the issue of increasing the engagement of local suppliers, in particular, small and medium-sized businesses, in GE’ global chain of suppliers. “Upon full consideration of the specific nature of industry, strict quality requirements and legal regulations, as well as the factors connected with cost effectiveness, and whilst maintaining full compliance with the European Union and national principles of competition, GE expressed its willingness to continue increase its engagement with Polish suppliers in its chain of supplies,” the press release said. The strategic cooperation between GE and the Polish government may be viewed from many angles. Most specifically, it underscores the importance of American investors in the development of the economy in Poland. More broadly, it underlines the importance of the impact that foreign companies have had on the development of the

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• Companies with foreign capital contribute over 33% to Poland’s total revenue generated from corporate income tax. • Over 67% of Poland’s exports, measured in value, was generated by companies with foreign capital in business in Poland in 2015.

Polish economy. Pesky investors Like in many countries around the world, foreign investors, when they first planted their flags in the Polish turf, were distrusted by the locals. The investors had the money and the technology, but more importantly, they had business knowhow, acumen and confidence. It made a big difference and caused a big cultural shock for the local people who had been educated and trained in a begone system which had advertised their collective superiority in many areas through such slogans as “Polish engineering thought equals and even surpasses that in the Western World”. In time, as more and more investment projects appeared in Poland brought by companies from overseas, pundits with a leaning towards national superiority in everything were doubting whether these investors “were seriously engaged” in the country’s economy and society. They would say that “simple assembly lines” can be taken apart and driven away from the coun-

try in a matter of days; that BPO centers were “sweatshops” with low-paid jobs for young people. Foreign investors knew that those remarks could not have been further from the truth, but it was instinctive reaction rather than a fact-based appraisal. Also, no single investor had the aggregated numbers describing what foreign investment have done to the Polish economy. dispelling myths Yet, when such criticism, recently, began to appear in the upper echelons of Polish politics (MPs, government members) the representatives of some international chambers of commerce in Poland began to consider the idea that a research should be made into the impact of FDI on the Polish economy over the last 25—a thorough and independent study to reveal the real picture. The idea got the backing of the International Group of Chambers of Commerce, of which AmCham is a member, and the job was given to Polityka Insight, an independent market intelligence unit of the weekly


Polityka. The result of the study, a report entitled The impact of Foreign Direct Investment—Contribution to the Polish economy in the past quarter century was published in March. Its launch to the public took place at a conference held at the Ministry of Development with government members in attendance. Along with tracing the roots of FDI as of its country of origin and measuring the share each country contributed to the total inflow of FDI to Poland, the report runs cross-industry analysis of where the money went and how much; how it impacted domestic companies in terms of growth; how many jobs were created and how the jobs impacted the labor market, including salaries, consumer demand; and what were indirect impacts of FDI on the entire society. One area that the report does not show—because it is not an economic aspect per se—is how foreign companies impacted university training and how they became a substitute for national vocational training which ceased to exist in the case of some industries. One of the interesting aspects of the report is that its author Adam Czerniak, chief economist at Polityka Insight, used some economic modeling to show how the economy of Poland would have fared had the inflow of FDI to the country been zero between 1990-2015. Some of the conclusions (see the previous page) are stunning, which is, arguably, the best way of presenting the impact of FDI in Poland to those who have doubts about how far it goes beyond the proverbial sweatshops, assembly lines and the repatriation of profits. Going forward Speaking at the conference, Iwona Chojnowska Haponik, client service director at the Polish Agency for Investment and Trade (formerly PAIiIZ), reaffirmed all the positive trends in FDI captured by the report. She said that foreign investors continue to express intensive interest in Poland for they perceive the country as economically and politically stable, with a huge pool of local talent to hire. “We have 185 investment projects in the pipeline,” she said, “which is 20% more than in the last several few years. If all those projects are finalized in Poland, it will translate into an inflow of over EUR 4 billion in FDI in the next few years and 52,000 new jobs.” Chojnowska-Haponik noted that after a boom in investment in shared services centers, which was not very capital intensive but created many jobs, a new trend is emerging after a long break—greenfield investment. She said that the largest investment projects come from the US, Germany and France and noted that 85% of those proj-

ects are of American origin. “American companies feel at home in Poland and it is true not only in the case of those companies who reinvest but also for those who come to Poland for the first time.” She added that American companies are “trendsetters” in FDI in Poland. “They were the first to invest in manufacturing in Poland, and years later they were the first to invest in shared services centers.” She also said that foreign investors tend to continue to offer better salaries to their workers, despite the rise in wages in Poland in recent years. “In some cases the difference between what foreign companies offer may be 40% higher as compared to what domestic companies offer.” Talking about where cooperation between investors and the agency may improve, she pointed to the huge potential for R&D that Poland has built in recent years thanks to structural and cohesion funds from the European Union. “Investors need to see our potential in this area, that they can carry out R&D projects at a world-class level. At the moment they start with small-scale R&D projects, mainly to customize products to the local market. Some of them, however, having seen the potential of the Polish staff, do upgrade their R&D operations in Poland so they reach a higher level in their global R&D structures.” doing our part Following the launch of the report on March 1, it was further discussed at Polityka Insight headquarter with a the whole spectrum of government members and diplomats attending the event. Doing its part to propagate the real picture of FDI in Poland, AmCham took the report on the road starting in Gdynia in April where it was presented to the local business community and Tricity government representatives. Kraków and Wrocław are next. Here and now The publication of the report preceded by a month the launch of the 2017 Business Survey—Poland in the eyes of foreign investors, an annual polling of foreign investors (369 companies operating in Poland) who are the members of the International Group of Chambers of Commerce. The polling, compiled by the German Chamber of Industry and Trade (AHK), presents the aggregated view of investors on what in their eyes makes Poland attractive, and what puts them on alert. This year’s edition showed that among the factors that drive Poland’s attractiveness is EU membership (and access to the EU markets), as well as qualified staff and local suppliers. The survey also revealed that in year-on-year comparison, investors have a better evaluation of the transparency

“We are into an economy which is embedded in brick and mortar. The economy still gets a huge contribution from state-owned enterprises, which, by definition, are into more traditional areas of the business.” Marcin Petrykowski

of public procurement and the effectiveness of the fight against corruption and economic crime. An aspect of attractiveness which deteriorated in the eyes of investors when compared to the 2016 edition, was “the score of legal safety” as the respondents indicated that some of the laws affecting their businesses were passed too quickly and without proper consideration for the feedback from the business community. The opinions of the respondents on political and social stability were also more negative in comparison to the 2016 survey results, which was the result of the change of government and the unclear messages sent by the new administration last year regarding some of its planned policies. Among the aspects more negatively viewed by the respondents in 2017 as compared to 2016 was “the legal flexibility of employment” and “the availability of employees”. The vast majority of the respondents indicated that they see the current state of the economy in Poland in a positive light. Over half (54.%) assessed it as satisfactory, and 32.% as good, with nearly 14% of the respondents referring to it as bad. The majority of respondents (59%) said

“Poland has to learn to utilize its existing R&D infrastructure in good business models and foreign companies can provide some of the best practices.” Krzysztof Senger

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Cover story Foreign investment WHERE DO WE GO FROM HERE?

• EU membership, qualified staff and local suppliers are factors driving Poland's attractiveness for foreign investors. • Investors noted improvement year-on-year in the transparency of public procurement, and the effectiveness of the fight against corruption and economic crime.

The report on Poland's attractiveness for foreign investors 2017, compiled annually by the German Chamber of Industry and Trade in cooperation with the International Group of Chambers of Commerce in Poland, offers hints on what government policies are viewed as positive by foreign investors and what aren't—essential feedback for a government that has to make the most of Poland's economic potential. that they had a positive forecast for their turnover in 2017, above the 2016 numbers. In turn, 32% said they foresee no changes, and 9% said their turnover this year is expected to be below the 2016 numbers. When it comes to hiring, 45% of the respondents said that they plan to increase employment, while 49% said they will continue to employ in 2017 at the same level as last year. Only 5.7% of companies plan to reduce their employment, which is a significant decrease on 2016 results when 9.4% declared such intent. However, the appetite to invest in Poland decreased slightly in 2017, as only 32.5% of the respondents said they would increase their investment expenditures, compared to 36% in 2016. Beyond reach Commenting on the results of the survey, S&P’s Marcin Petrykowski noted that the government plays a limited role im shaping up those aspects of Poland’s attractiveness that appealed to foreign investors. When it

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• In a year-on-year comparison, the most critical negative changes for investors included lower political and social stability and a lack of predictability in economic policies. • The safety of the legal framework for business also turned out to be less favourable for foreign investors who indicated that some laws, including those governing different business sectors, were passed too quickly and without proper consultation with business.

comes to Poland’s membership in the EU, it is a fact, and nothing is going to change that any time soon, although, Petrykowski noted, “The atmosphere in Brussels today is such that it poses questions about the future of Poland in the EU. It is an issue worth monitoring because investors will look at how Poland will position itself in the EU and if it will have problems in it.” Another aspect that makes Poland attractive for foreign investors—qualified workforce—can not be shaped by short-term government policies because the level of education is a result of long-term policies. A similar problem arises over the quality of local suppliers —a domain of foreign investors which the government does not have a say in. Patrykowski also said that when it comes to flexible labor laws, a category which scored a lower rating this year than in 2016, which means that the respondents were increasingly unhappy with the flexibility of employment options available in Poland, inflexible labor law is not a deal breaker be-

cause Germany, a country which has the most effective economy in the EU, “has a labor law which is much more inflexible than in Poland”. When it comes to the availability of workers, it is also a problem which can be addressed by government policies indirectly as the root cause of it is the shrinking demographics in the country. Petrykowski said that the business sector can tap into a wide pool of Ukrainian workers available in Poland, who are very well educated, share cultural values with Poles, and can fill in all positions from floor workers to management. The issue is, however, that starting in May this year, Ukrainians are entitled to visa-free travel to all EU countries and it will be increasingly difficult to retain them once they start migrating to the higher-paying jobs in the old EU countries. Petrykowski said that the issue of demographics will be increasingly pressing for business in the years to come. He cited a study by the European Commission which estimated that by 2050 the population of


Poland will shrink by 10% with 30% of it living in retirement. Global uncertainty Commenting on the lower appetite for increasing investment expenditure, revealed by the survey, Petrykowski noted that 2016 saw a drop in investment projects in the public sector in Poland that was caused by a government freeze of EU aid programs, which in turn, came as a result of the change of government and the subsequent replacement of experts in government ministries who handle EU aid programs. “It is a domino effect—many investment projects in the private sector come around in connection with investment projects in the public sector,” he said. Petrykowski noted that foreign companies make investment decisions at the level of their central headquarters and such decisions may be influenced by a much more broader picture than just Poland. Last year, he noted, there were some developments, which added to investor uncertainty. Many of them may now think twice before they give their “go ahead” to an investment project that increases their production volumes when it is not clear whether or not some protectionists policies from the new US administration or the post-Brexit UK will affect global trade. making a difference When it comes to the areas where government policies have a huge potential to influence the attractiveness of Poland for for-

eign investors, Petrykowski pointed to legislation, including tax laws. He also said, that despite the fact that foreign investors indicated their appreciation for “the effectiveness of the fight against corruption and economic crime” this is not such an obviously positive development for foreign investors. He explained that an overly penal system which is after every minor crime, may deliver more harm than good to companies if they, because of some errors, fall in fault with the Polish tax system, for instance, and as a result lose their reputation. “The implementation of such a system must be very flexible because if it is not, and companies are penalized for some small errors, it will be big problem for them. That’s how the world works today,” Petrykowski said. It is worth noting that in light of recent changes to the tax law, certain crimes, such as issuing fraudulent invoices, may be penalized with up to 25 years in prison—the same penalty as for committing first-degree murder. moving up the value chain Petrykowski concluded his analysis by saying that one of the biggest challenges for the Polish economy is to move into a value added economy. “We are into an economy which is embedded in brick and mortar. The economy still gets a huge contribution from state-owned enterprises, which, by definition, are into more traditional areas of business.” According to another speaker at the con-

ference, Krzysztof Senger, vice-president of the Polish Agency for Investment and Trade, the Polish economy has a chance to make that leap up the value chain thanks to the Polish Development Fund—a government-controlled fund of funds charged with a mission to support the government’s Strategy for Responsible Development. The fund has USD 1 billion earmarked for highrisk investments and a goal to invest in approximately 1,500 technology startups. But to make the strategy turn out to be successful, Poland has to learn how to use its existing R&D infrastructure in good business models. To do so, “the scientific community in Poland has to learn how to approach business in new ways and foreign companies can provide some of the best practices,” Senger, said. a good sign There are many questions regarding the future of the economy of Poland and what strategies will best suit its development. But if the signing of a strategic partnership between GE and the Ministry of Development is anything to go by it is safe to say that the government is on the right track when it comes to finding the answers to those questions.

Boost your company exposure by sponsoring AmCham events We offer a unique opportunity to increase your company’s visibility through sponsorship of AmCham events, by promoting your company to the business and diplomatic community and receiving media coverage. AmCham events in Warsaw include business mixers, high-level discussion panels at CEO Forums, as well as our big annual events, the 4th of July Picnic and the AmCham Diner at the Krynica Economic Forum and the European Economic Congress in Katowice, which attract hundreds of guests. In addition to AmCham’s Warsaw events, companies can sponsor events in Kraków, Katowice, Wrocław, and Gdańsk. Events include business mixers, conferences, and more. For more information on events, please contact us at

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Monthly Meeting February

Fond of funds The Polish government means business

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aweł Borys, president of the Polish Development Fund, and Carlos Piñerúa, World Bank country manager for Poland and the Baltic States, met with AmCham members in April to talk about the prospects of developing the Polish economy. The Polish Development Fund, established in 2016, is a state-owned financial group whose goal is to fill the market gaps in financing investment projects in the private sector. The World Bank has assisted the Polish governments in helping develop the economy by providing insights into effective financial sector policies, as well as offering reports and recommendations. economic environment First to speak, Carlos Piñerúa, made a short presentation on global economic prospects as viewed by the World Bank. He said that the economy of Poland did relatively well in 2016, when the country’s growth in gross domestic product reached 2.3%, while the global growth of GDB was at 2.7%. However, Piñerúa noted that looking ahead into 2017, there is a whole new spectrum of economic risks in the world and very little confidence. “The big question is what is going to happen with the fiscal policy in the US,” he said. “There are indicators that fiscal expenditures in the US will increase while taxes will be lowered. How that will take place and what impact on economy it will have, be we don’t know—too early to say.” Another uncertainty is developing around the issue of protectionism and how that may influence economic growth globally. “There is a lot of speculation that the US protectionist MEET THE SPEAKERS

Paweł Borys has had an extensive career with a number of private banks and financial groups in developing their private equity and venture capital business, economic analysis, and business strategies. He also worked as economic scientist at the Warsaw School of Economics and authored a number of scientific articles on the relations between the financial sector and economic growth.

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policies may affect trade with Mexico, China, the EU,” he said. The third problem Piñerúa signaled was the economic situation of Russia and whether or not the EU and the US will lift economic sanctions imposed on Russia following the annexation of the Crimean Peninsula from Ukraine by the Russian Federation. “That will have huge implications on world trade and foreign markets including Europe,” Piñerúa said. He added that World Bank monitors the global economic situation and tries to incorporate all those factors into its economic development modeling. “Those factors may also affect investment plans of the private sector and we continue to monitor the situation and try to update you with it.” In turn, Paweł Borys, said that along with uncertainties and risks in the global economy, which stem from politics, additional threats and uncertainties for investors come from the on-going technological change, the so-called Industry 4.0 revolution, which, among others, reduces the demand for manpower in the economy. “Technology is the driving factor for business now also in Poland,” Borys said. more confidence, please To help the Polish economy navigate through the economic threats and insecurities the Polish government adopted a new policy which aims to safeguard smooth long-term growth for the economy of Poland. The policy, called the Strategy for Responsible Growth, (and also the Morawiecki Pland, after its author, Mateusz Morawiecki, deputy prime minister and minister of economy and finance), was designed to help Poland, over the next 15 years, catch up with the level of economic develop-

Carlos Piñerúa, has an extensive experience as a World Bank officer in Europe and Asia where he coordinated various programs improving local economies and held a number of advisory positions to governments. He received an M.A. in Economics from the Florida International University and is macroeconomist by training. He is a candidate Ph.D. at Indiana University, where he was a Fulbright scholar.

ment of Western Europe. The Polish economy, at present, is approximately at 70% of the EU average measured in the value of production. Paweł Borys explained that the Polish Investment Fund is embedded in the Morawiecki Plan as an instrument with which the government intends to support “the growth of a competitive and modern economy in Poland”. “We want to transform the economy in the way that it will be able come up with more and more high-tech jobs because they produce higher value in the economy, and make people increase their skills. So, this is about education, and technology transfers from abroad, and in the end, it is also about the capital.” As a government-affiliated institution, the Polish Development Fund has its priority to help facilitate domestic investment capital because its key objective is to help companies in Poland—both domestic and foreign—to have access to financing in every stage of their development, including seed capital. In order to efficiently fulfill its mission, the Polish Development Fund is has adopted an umbrella structure which integrates a number of government agencies and economic development institutions that in the past offered financial aid to businesses through different independent aid programs. The problem was that they often overlapped in some areas and had loopholes in others and their supervision on he part of the Ministry of Economy was ineffective. The areas of action While the Polish Development Fund is a big national financial institution its goal is not to replace the existing banks as a “master lender” but to invest in such areas which are viewed as strategic for the economy as envisioned by the Morawiecki Plan, and most preferably do this in partnership with other investors, such as banks. There are five strategic areas for the Polish Investment Fund in which to invest in: banking; infrastructure and real estate property; export insurance; the development of entrepreneurial firms in Poland; internationalization of the Polish economy—helping Polish companies enter foreign markets outside of the EU. When it comes to supporting the development of an innovation-based economy, the Polish Development Fund has created five different venture capital funds (in the fund-of-funds model) which will pick “startups, bigger companies, and companies which apply innovative technologies” for investment engagement with up to four years. A separate venture capital fund will be looking for domestic and foreign enterprises to invest in their innovative projects. Those investment programs will require up to 50% financing from the Polish Development Fund and 50% from other partners.


Monthly Meeting April

Tax climax The government plans to optimize fiscal policy

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ver 100 AmCham members turned up for the chamber’s Monthly Meeting in April to meet Paweł Gruza, deputy minister of finance, who talked about the government reforms of taxation. He said that the priority of the government is twofold: to improve the efficiency of fiscal authorities by reforming the collection of consumer tax (the so called value added tax, VAT), and to simplify the red tape at the taxpayers’ end, where possible. Gruza admitted that the Polish fiscal administration is far from efficient when it comes to VAT collection, especially when compared to its counterparts in Western Europe. He said that the Polish reforms in this area will derive a lot from the new VAT collection system in Czechia, a country which began to tackle its own issues with fiscal efficiency last year. However, he added, the Polish system will be “like no other” because it will require companies to have a dedicated bank account from which they will pay VAT and to which the VAT that is due to them will be paid. e-commerce Deputy Minister Gruza said that the government recognizes the need to impose VAT on retail sales made via the internet. “E-commerce is the future of trade,” he said, adding that the ministry looks at the type of taxation introduced in the UK, because “it is cutting edge. “The whole idea is to have a tax system which has tools that are friendly to taxpayers and robust from the point of view of the budget.” MEET THE SPEAKER

Paweł Gruza was appointed deputy minister of finance in April 2016. Following his graduation from law and administration department of Warsaw University, Gruza worked as consultant for a number of companies in heavy industry and financial services, and worked for business consulting companies. He authored a number of articles on economy and the EU law.

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corporate income tax When it comes to taxation of businesses, the deputy minister said, that before the ministry will come up with ideas how to strengthen the fiscal efficiency in this area, it has to study other systems and look at countries that tighten their fiscal regimes by closing loopholes, or other countries trying to create new systems. The Ministry of Finance understands that both approaches are important as long as they are effective, especially that, as scientific evidence shows, companies with the most innovative technologies and business solutions are also those with the most innovative tax optimization practices. “Many of those multinational companies come from the US,” Deputy Minister Gruza said jokingly. He added that more and more young people with liberal and left-leaning mindsets are in business and they impact the ways in companies react to taxation. “They tend to expect more and more from the government and at the same time are completely O.K. with the fact that companies do make a profit effectively avoiding paying taxes,” Gruza said, adding that the ministry looks at this process and “tries to understand its social implications.” Transfer pricing The issue of transfer pricing—the rules and methods for pricing transactions between enterprises under common ownership or control—has been hot ever since foreign companies put their flags in the Polish turf. “Multinational companies have this obvious ability to take away their profits from one country and send it to another tax jurisdiction, while domestic companies do not have such a choice and have to keep their profits in one jurisdiction,” Gruza explained. This is why for the ministry the solution is to have such tools that will enable it to create “a level playing-field for everybody in the market.” Beyond saying that the ministry was working on such tools, the deputy minister would not elaborate on any of them. investment incentives Deputy Minster Gruza said that the government recognizes the importance of incentives for investors who consider Poland as a location for their investment projects. This is why “when it comes to grating special incentives to individual investors, the ministry acts on a case-by -case basis.” In turn, when it comes to an incentive system that all investors can tap into, Gruza pointed at Poland’s network of Special Economic Zones, where every investor is entitled

to a set of tax cuts and reliefs depending on the number of jobs created and the amount of money invested. “There is a huge number of the zones and they cover a lot of areas in different parts of Poland,” Gruza said. incentives for innovators Asked by a member of the audience about government plans to reform the existing system of incentives that innovating companies can tap into, the deputy minister replied that the Ministry of Finance works closely with the Ministry of Science and Higher Education “on a system which would offer much more incentives to innovative companies than the current system”. The current system, Gruza explained, offers financial breaks to companies who produce innovations that do not work. “Theoretically it is an incentive but practically it is not,” he said that the reform of the system aims at offering even more incentives but only to companies which “really think about applying more and more innovations into their business models”. carbon emission taxation Responding to a question from the audience about a carbon tax which would encourage the development of low-emissions as well as noncarbon fuel based energy sources, the deputy minister said that Poland, which has vast deposits of coal, opts for the development of clean coal technologies. “The coal industry can be a driver of innovation when it comes to finding more efficient ways to utilize coal for the energy sector,” he said. He added that there is a lot of misunderstanding about curbing emissions of carbon dioxide globally. Some countries, such as Germany, which has a widespread application of natural gas across its power and heavy industries and heating systems, and which imports the gas from Russia, can do so only because Russia can burn coal to fuel its industry. The deputy minister noted that this has a huge impact on the environment because power plants in Russia do not use “the best technology”. Personal income tax The regulations governing the collection of PIT in Poland are complex and cumbersome for the tax authorities, and if simplified, would inevitably lead to collecting more money. Add to it the regulations governing the payment of social security, which are equally complex. The ministry is of the opinion that the system urgently needs simplification. “We are looking at making it more simple to collect PIT and social security and we would like to make it one single payment,” the deputy minister said. “The system is too complex now and we see no reason why it should continue that way.”


Focus Economic outlook

Looking into the future The world economy will continue to grow in 2017

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n January, Jean-Michel Six, chief economist for EMEA at S&P Global Ratings, held in Warsaw a presentation on global economic trends, which was a unique opportunity for the Warsaw-based business community members to have direct contact with one of the sharpest brains behind S&P's economic analysis. signs of growth Opening his presentation Six said that the global economy is sending out growth signals after four years of relatively flat performance. The improvement is the result of trade growth acceleration in Brazil (“not extraordinary but gradual” according to Six), Russia (“expect a modest and positive economic growth in 2017”), China (“a slow but secure growth, which this year is going to accelerate”), and India, a country which, “despite it disastrous attempts to reduce the amount of cash in the economy, outperformed all other emerging markets in the last few years and continues to have a solid outlook”.

“strict monetary policy, higher interest rates and strong currency. That’s the net result,” Six said. Troubled eurozone Looking at the European Union, Six noted that the eurozone (a group of countries in the union sharing the same euro currency) is the only region that experienced two recessions in a row in recent years: in 2009 and 2011. This is why there are signs of economic recovery in the eurozone compared to other regions. But they are early signs and it is hard to say now if the eurozone economy will continue to recover. On the upside, Six said, a good sign is that following the Brexit referendum in the UK, growth momentum in the eurozone “seems to be accelerating in 2017”. In addition, consumer confidence is at an all-time high since 2011 and exports are re-

covering thanks to the weak euro. uneven recovery Yet, there are big differences in the economic performance of different members of the eurozone. Germany and France are accelerating while Spain is decelerating, but from a very high level of GPD growth. In turn, Italy, which is the third largest economy in the eurozone has not been growing for nearly 20 years, “which is a very significant and serious issue for such a large economy,” Six said. In turn, the good news is that the largest EU economy, Germany, is doing well, fueled by high internal demand and investment. It is good news for Poland too as Germany is Poland’s largest trading partner.

Photo: S&P Global Ratings webcast service

inflation here to stay The economic recovery in the eurozone goes together with a higher inflation rate. Because of that, there are higher inflation expectations too, yet still below 2%. The reappearance of may be enough to cause overheating? some tensions inside of the While emerging markets are imeurozone in 2017 between the portant to the state of the global zone’s northern and southern economy, the country which has countries as they will review a critical impact on it is the US. their monetary policies. In Six said that with the new US this scenario, Germany may administration there are quesattempt to stop accommodations regarding its economic tive monetary policies of the policies. “At the beginning of southern members, while 2017 the US economy is very France may not be so happy close to reaching its potential about it insisting that it is too growth rate. There is a lot of mo- Jean-Michel Six delivers his presentation in Warsaw early to reverse it. mentum for the GDP growth present in the economy, and beyond that The outlook for Poland point the economy may overheat.” Six noted that Poland’s growth of GDP in Six noted that in light of President 2016 was at 2.8% which signaled a slight Trump declarations, his administration will slowdown, led primarily by investment. work to make the US economy grow even “But we expect growth to accelerate again faster with an intent to create more jobs. in 2017 and 2018 as the eurozone economy Yet, as Six noted, at present, the US econcontinues to improve and the German omy is very close to full employment. “If economy continues to grow.” you add to this the threat of reducing immiSix added that the economy of Poland gration flows—and immigrants historically many grow 3.3% GDP in 2017, and it may kept the economy growing—there does not be accompanied by a 1.5% inflation rate. seem to be a labor market that can cope “It looks reasonably solid but the biggest with that expected rise in the economic uncertainty is on the investment side, ingrowth.” cluding private and public investment,” he According to Six, this problem may be resaid. solved by higher inflation and a higher budget deficit, which would also mean

“Poland’s GDP growth in 2017 looks reasonably solid at 3.3% but the biggest uncertainty is on the investment side, including private and public investment.”

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US-Poland cooperation

Men with a plan Economic rationale should prevail in time of uncertainty

T

he Katowice-based publishing conglomerate PTWP Group and the Chamber of Commerce and Industry in Katowice joined forces with AmCham Poland in January to hold a one-day-conference devoted to promoting trade and investment between Poland and the US. The keynote speakers were Walter Braunohler, US Consul General in Kraków; Bogumił Sobula, Deputy Mayor of Katowice. The American Day in Silesia brought together at the International Congress Center in Katowice representatives of the American business community in Katowice and the Upper Silesia region, who shared their perspectives on economic ties with representatives of local government and regional business leaders. Hands across the ocean Along with networking events, the participants attended two expert panel discussions. The first was moderated by Roman Rewald, AmCham Board Member (Weil Gotshal Manges), who talked about what impact the new US administration might have on Poland and the European Union, and how it may influence the development of trade and investment between America and Poland. The panelists were Prof. Małgorzata Dziembała from the Department of Economic Relations at University of Economics in Katowice, and Tomasz Zjawiony, chairman of the Chamber of Industry and Commerce in Katowice. The panelists were joined through a teleconference call to Paweł Pietrasieński from the Polish-American Chamber of Commerce in Nevada, who talked about the opportunities that have opened up for investors in Nevada and Upper Silesia following the signing of an agreement late last year between the governments of the State of Nevada and the Upper Silesia Province on economic and scientific cooperation. While all panelists agreed that it was too early to predict how the new US administration would impact global trade, the agreement between Nevada and Upper Silesia was a sign that by acting independently of the central administration, regional governments in the US and Poland have the potential to forge important links in business, innovation and technology transfers. “We don’t know yet what the Trump presidency will bring, but even if we see some obstacles to global trade there will other methods to

build economic cooperation and doing it region-to-region is a way to go,” said Roman Rewald.

ernment intensifies its contacts with the private sector to get feedback on the Morawiecki strategy.

a sense of direction Another panel discussion focused at the political situation in Poland and how its perception by foreign investors may impact their decisions to invest in Poland. The panelists were Joanna Bensz, AmCham Vice Chair; Grzegorz Dobranowski, sales and business transformation leader at IBM Poland and the Baltics; Jerzy Kozicz, chairman of the board of directors of CMC Poland; Marcin Nowak, managing director for infrastructure and services at Capgemini Eastern Europe, and Paweł Wideł, government relations manager at GM Manufacturing Poland. The discussion was moderated by Jacek Ziarno, deputy editor of the economic monthly Nowy Przemysł. According to Joanna Bensz, investors require a degree of predictability in areas that influence their businesses, such as market regulations and fiscal policies, and are wary of a political situation in a country they intend to invest if they have reasons to believe that it might undermine or damage their investments. She noted that an economic strategy for Poland presented by Mateusz Morawiecki, deputy prime minister and minister of development, offers a framework for the government's economic reform plans, which is a good sign for foreign investors in Poland too. More so, as the gov-

we the nation In turn, Marcin Nowak, commenting on the Morawiecki plan, said that the BPO and shared services sectors should be the driving force for the Polish economy in the years to come, but the plan has a “nationalistic twist”, which is strange as, by far, foreign investors constitute the largest group of companies in the BPO and shared services. In turn, Grzegorz Dobranowski noted that the government’s economic agenda, which underlines the importance of “nationality” of industry, can have some rhetorical value it is, nevertheless, meaningless in practice. He noted that IBM employs thousands of people in Poland who deliver IBM services worldwide and by doing so are ambassadors of Poland, and not the US, with the good work they do. In other words, Poles employed by foreign companies do not lose their national identity but, on the contrary, promote it through the global business platforms they have access to. This view was echoed by Jerzy Kozicz, who said that the largest investment projects parked in Poland by foreign steel companies took place when the government was led by parties with a strong nationalistic agenda. Meanwhile what really makes a difference for the steel industry in Poland is the regulatory framework which which helps it grow. Kozicz noted that steel production is one of the fastest-growing industries globally and the second highest grossing one after oil and gas, yet in Poland, due to inadequate market regulations governing fair competition, and high energy prices, it can not deliver its full potential. While this is something that politicians can solve, their inability to do so hurts foreign steel companies in Poland much more than any nationalistic slogans. There is yet another aspect of economic development in which politics will have critical impact—the public sector. According to CapGemini’s Marcin Nowak, outsourcing services for the public sector is a market with the largest growth potential in the Polish economy. Yet, to utilize the potential, politicians will have to change their mindset about the how the public sector works including the cost side of the equation.

The scope and scale of services that the public sector will have to outsource is a market with the largest growth potential in the Polish economy. The public sector will have to outsource parts of its functions to cut the costs.

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Company profile Gremi Holding

Unlimited desire for success American Investor’s Tom Ćwiok talks with Grzegorz Hajdarowicz, CEO of Gremi Holding, about his business philosophy and success How would you you characterize Gremi Holding? Gremi Holding is a group of companies which pursue business opportunities in different areas. It consists of Gremi Media, which, along with a range of other nationwide press titles, is the publisher of the oldest Polish daily, Rzeczpospolita. Another company in the holding is KCI S.A., a capital group which invests in real estate and the media. It is a public company and its stock is traded on the Warsaw Stock Exchange. Yet another company, Dragmor, specializes in investing in real estate abroad. Its flagship project is Eco Estrella—a recreation complex along a five-mile-long beach in Brazil with a permission to develop 330,000 square meters of the land. Gremi Holding also has a film production company, Gremi Film Production, which has produced six movies in Poland and the US. It is based in Los Angeles.

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Photo courtesy of IGremi Holding

From real estate to film production, it is quite a diverse portfolio... I’m not only interested in pure financial gain, but also look for interesting projects that can give me an opportunity to create something new—a new quality for all the people concerned. For instance, I have been buying state-owned companies which needed structural realignment to carry on. Those were often companies on the verge of bankruptcy that required huge intellectual input on the part of the new owner. Difficult decisions had to be taken; difficult psychological situations around the staff had to be resolved. I have fired thousands of people as a result of this process, but I’m proud of the fact that none of the companies I restructured went bankrupt. For instance, a firm I purchased, which specialized in the production of oil radiators for vehicle and helicopter engines, was turned around to become a producer of geothermal pumping systems. With this, I utilized the technical know-how of the company’s engineers but juxtaposed it with new technologies and new business thinking. It was a new chapter for the company and it turned out to be a successful one. So my philosophy of investing is always about looking for opportunities, new markets and products. Some of my companies were very successful. For instance, I owned a company, which, in 2002, delivered an electronic system for voting in to Polish Parliament. It consisted of microchip cards and slots for those cards. It still works today. The

same company, KFAP Sinake, delivered 5.5 million microchip cards and 24,000 two-slot terminals for the Lower Silesia National Healthcare System. It was the largest such system utilizing microchip cards in Europe and helped the national healthcare administrator in Lower Silesia monitor costs and follow the money. The system meant a huge improvement in cost management in the Polish healthcare system. So this is an example of a company which was innovative, groundbreaking and successful. The drive to create something new was obviously behind the film production company. We made six movies, including three for the US market: Nightwatching, Carmo, and in 2010, City Island. City Island was very successful both commercially and artisti-

cally. It is a comedy drama directed by Reymond De Felitta, featuring Andy Garcia and Julianna Margulies. Released in April 2009, it was the 14th best-grossing movie at the box office for three weeks in the US, and sold over half million DVDs prior to Christmas 2009. The movie was also a success in artistic terms—it won the 2009 TriBeCa Audience Award. you did not mention your most spectacular acquisition in Poland—that of Rzeczpospolita... Well, the media business is very challenging these days because of the internet revolution. But it also has opportunities for those who come up with successful new business models. My first media acquisition took place in 2009 with the purchase of the Przekrój weekly from Edipresse, and Sukces from Mulitco Press. Przekrój was a niche cultural magazine while Sukces was a high-circulation lifestyle magazine. In spring 2010 I was in Los Angeles and I saw there a big outdoor advertising for iPad. It was announcing a revolution in the media. I realized that the future of what we knew as publishing would be iPad applications with quality content that readers will pay for. When it comes to quality content, Rzeczpospolita was an obvious choice. First off, the title had an impressive history: It was established by renowned Polish politician and piano virtuoso, Ignacy Jan Paderewski in 1918. The title had two daily edition in Warsaw, and local editions in Poznań, Kraków, Wilno and Lwów. After WW2 Rzeczpospolita was nationalized and published by a government-owned entity. In 1989 prime minister Tadeusz Mazowiecki restructured the ownership of Rzeczpospolita and it turned into an independent title owned by a succession of different media companies with a minority stake retained by the Ministry of Treasury. During this time Rzeczpospolita became the leading daily covering politics, the economy, business and society, and it had a very good, valuable content, which was the second reason why the title was interesting to me. In 2010, a 51% stake in Rzeczpospolita was owned by Mecom Poland Holdings S.A., a part of the British investment organization Mecom Group, and 49%, as I’ve said, was in the hands of the State Treasury. We approached Mecom with an offer but they rejected it arguing they were not interested in selling Rzeczpospolita. But Mecom was a public company and we ana-


lyzed their financial situation which led us to the conclusion that they had generated some debt they could not pay off on time. Rzeczpospolita, although an important part of their investment portfolio was not their core business. We renewed our offer. Eventually in 2010 they agreed to a transaction. In 2011, I approached the State Treasury with an offer for their 49% stake in Rzeczpospolita and, after long negotiations, we made a deal. In October 2011 I was the first private investor with a 100% stake in Rzeczpospolita after WW2! How did you feel about it? When we were putting our offer together for the first transaction many people were saying that it was impossible for the deal to go through. But I pressed on because I don’t believe in “impossible things” in business. But then I had to face the reality. When I took over Rzeczpospolita, it had 960 employees and a very poor technology in terms of IT and new media. I had to fire people, including political journalists who had been enjoying a sort of celebrity status and drew huge salaries, which I could not justify. I fired 850 people and hired 150. Today, the organization employs 300 people and delivers to the market much more than it ever did before. We publish the print edition of Rzeczpospolita and a range of other print titles, but also we have upgraded the technology servicing our website at rp.pl. We invested in online television, including TV production studios, and today we have 3 million users who use this content on their electronic devices. It is a high quality content and we are proud to be the number one conservative daily in the marketplace today in Poland. Some people say we are the Polish equivalent of The Financial Times or the The Washington Post, and when I hear them say so I know we are on the right track. what is the core readership of Rzecz-

pospolita?

We are formatted to be a partner to our readers who are entrepreneurs, business people, company owners. We do cover politics, but the main parts of the daily are sections devoted to the economy, markets and market trends as well as law and legislative changes. We deliver all that both small business owners and big business leaders need to know in order to run their businesses. So if you read Rzeczpospolita you know what changes are coming your way and you are informed and ready to make informed decisions. Most of our readers, who are decision-makers in business and politicians, start their day with the print edition of Rzeczpospolita, and end their day with the electronic version of Rzeczpospolita carrying the content the next day, which is available on their electronic devices by 9 P.M. So we combine the old and the new media formats

and we have no competition in this area on the Polish market. what is your advertising client base? It’s very diverse. We are a good partner to any company for each firm has to position itself on the market. Everyday, we reach the largest group of opinion-makers in Poland, and if there is a company which wants to show how it does business, how it grows, how ambitious it is, we are the right platform. We can certainly help a company develop a good reputation by delivering its message every day to that group in print and in electronic form. We also hold over 150 business conferences each year. Some are nationwide conferences but other are regional. We have a special focus on Polish regions. Since 2015 Rzeczpospolita has been carrying a separate section devoted to business in Polish regions, which delivers information about regional companies and markets that can not be found in any other title. was it a difficult decision to stop giving away content for free? Rzeczpospolita was the first daily in Poland which set up a pay wall to access its content—in January 2012. We were fully aware of the fact that our content carried value and decided to charge for it. It was a risky move but we succeeded. But our content is produced by the best journalists you can find in Poland and it means that it is expensive to produce. aren’t you afraid that what you sell may soon be available for free on other websites? We deliver our content via apps to mobile devices so this is controlled distribution. But since you mentioned intellectual property theft, I have to say that the concept of intellectual property is one of the staples of the modern economy. It is understood in the US, but not so much in Poland. As I have said, I owned Przekrój—an art and culture magazine. Its content was strongly embedded in Polish culture and Polish language. When we tried to find a new business model for it and combine its print and interactive platforms, we realized that Polish readers were so used to getting content about art and culture for free that there was no way in trying to make them pay for it. So this is a cultural thing. There are online publishers who recycle content produced by somebody else and offer it to their readers for free. They generate revenue by displaying advertising. But I hope that in future this problem will be solved by proper regulations and effective enforcement of those regulations. you spent a considerably long stretch of time in the us as a student, and now

frequently travel there. i wonder what influence american culture has on you... I’m absolutely a New Yorker when it comes to my experience in the US. I went there when I was a student and became absolutely fascinated by the city. I met many people who, thanks to their entrepreneurial talents, hard work, professionalism and determination to succeed, were thriving in New York. I was also impressed by the egalitarian spirit of the place where everybody could talk with everybody no matter their social and financial standing. Before my return to Poland, together with a friend of mine, we rented an 18-year-old Volkswagen and covered 10,000 miles in it, driving across America from Pennsylvania to Dakota to California to San Diego and Tijuana in Mexico. It was a fantastic experience. When I came back to Poland, my friends from the the anticommunist movement, which I had been a part of before, told me I should go into politics. But I realized that I was too poor to be a politician in Poland. I felt that after the start of the political and economic transformation Poland was a land of opportunity. So I decided to pursue my destiny in business, so to speak. I think, it was a good decision. When I think of it, I have to say that I was lucky with people in the US and I was lucky with people in Poland too. My first business venture would not have become reality had it not been for Mrs Barbara Piasecka-Johnson, the owner of Johnson & Johnson. In 1991 the company produced, among others, the Tołpa diet supplement. Together with a friend of mine we realized that the company did not cover all of Poland with its distribution network and saw an opportunity. We met with the sales director in Wrocław and said we would distribute the Tołpa product in southern Poland. He looked at us, two young boys with a second-hand truck—and told us to get lost. We met him again a few weeks later ad asked him to give us a chance. It was during that meeting that Mrs Piasecka-Johnson came into the office and asked what we wanted. When we told her about our proposition she told the sales director to give us a chance. We were very enthusiastic about it and worked hard. In a few months we knew it was a success. In geographic terms we covered some 25% of the market in Poland and we generated some 70% of all Tołpa sales in the country. We definitely proved ourselves worthy and cranked out sales for the company, although I know for a fact that the sales director was not happy about it because we disproved his initial assessment of our ability. So it is about mentality and I have been blessed, in business, to have met many people in Poland, who, like Mrs Piasecka-Johnson, had this open-minded American mentality.

• SPRING 2017 AMERICAN INVESTOR

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Company profile JF Legal

Bespoke and personal American Investor’s Tom Ćwiok talks with Paul Fogo and Marcin Jakubaszek, partners at JF Legal, about how they create value for clients with their independent law firm you both have many years of experience working for a big, international law firm. why did you decide to form your own law firm?

marcin Jakubaszek: Yes, at some point we decided that we could serve many more businesses but to do that we needed much more flexibility in terms of our agreements with our clients governing the basis on which we deliver our services. With this we also needed more flexibility on decision making so we would be able to make decisions quick without lengthy internal consultations. Having that flexibility now we can meet our clients needs much better than before. Especially when it comes to clients who are interested in limiting their risk and exposure to cost. We can apply different approaches cost wise and can make up our minds in a time efficient manner. So those were the reasons why we decided to create our own law firm. PF: Many small and medium-sized businesses have a lot of legal issues to deal with at the beginning but they can not afford to hire an inter22

Photo by Tom Ćwiok

Paul Fogo: Indeed, Marcin and I worked for 12 years in the same law firm. At a certain point we noticed that when it comes to winning new clients we were constrained by conflicts of some global rules. Also, we would meet entrepreneurs in Poland who had ideas to start a new business, but they could not afford us. Large law firms have usually certain billing practices and they could not take a lot of interesting clients. Marcin is the Polish law expert and I’m pretty good with the American law and business practices and together we were able to provide quality services to international clients, and we were able to be very flexible in how we approach our clients because here were are the decision makers.

national law firm and they can not afford to hire a full time in-house attorney. Those firms are just at the point when they are large enough to have challenging legal issues but are not quite large enough to be able to hire their own legal department. So that’s where we fill a niche. We are able to offer a service as

Paul Fogo and Marcin Jakubaszek

AMERICAN INVESTOR SPRING 2017

their in-house lawyer. It comes down more to our flexibility to deliver services for basically a flat rate. We provide all the day-to-day legal services that a small and medium-sized entrepreneur may need without having to hire a full-time inhouse attorney. We can detail one of our people to sit in our client’s office some of the time. There is a growing market for law services delivered to companies in such a way, and a growing need that has not been fulfilled by the larger law firms. do you think that the market evolves in such a way that there will be less and less demand for the services of big international law firms in Poland? PF: There is always going to be a demand for the large international law firms because the client will be based abroad and the parent company will tell its operations in Poland to use that particular law firm that is being used by the parent company. It will also in many cases apply to chain business having operations in many countries at the same time. That will remain. Some 20 years ago, the market was dominated by large international law firms who had nearly all the clients. This has been changing in the past 10 years. The Polish attornies have educated themselves and have enough international experience dealing with foreign clients that they can provide the same level of service to foreign clients that previously you would think only interna-


tional law firms could. Lawyers like us, who grew up in large international law firms, have the expertise, and experience, and are able to provide the same level of services that previously clients thought they could get only from established international law firms. In some cases Polish attorneys have much more detailed experience in Poland than foreign lawyers and clients now realize that. in what areas of the law do you specialize? mJ: Our specialization is in real estate, property, mergers and acquisitions. We have also some substantial experience in restructuring. But like other law firms we provide a comprehensive offer. If there are some aspects of the law which do not fall within our core competency we either

Clients often do not know if they have the right questions for the lawyer. They do not always tell you everything because they think some bits of information are irrelevant from a legal point of view. But they are wrong. have our colleagues who are on board or have other outside counsel which we can provide at any moment. This is what we do to handle technology law, IT and IP. PF: Even today we have the ability to provide the same level of legal advice as big international law firms. If next week we have a large transaction and if I need to bring in 10 attorneys we will have those attorneys. We have connections with other lawyers who are independent now

and who are happy to cooperate with us under our umbrella—we are still responsible to the client and the client would probably not notice the difference. mJ: As an organization we are a kind of a hub that, if necessary, can bring the right people to the table and make a team which serves the needs of our clients. It is not only here in Poland but also abroad. For the last two years we have done some international transactions and when we needed local counsels in other countries such as the UK, Hungary and Slovakia, we worked with law firms there with which we had had good experience, and they provided good legal services. So we can build international law teams with associated law firms and provide services like the big law firms which have offices in other countries. what is your corporate culture like when it comes to the people you employ? PF: We are a small firm and do not have backroom lawyers. We don’t have that. The lawyers we hire must be very wellrounded and people persons. Even our junior lawyers go out meeting clients— that’s one thing we expect from them. We want them to engage directly with our clients, with our supervision and assistance if necessary. We are the decision-makers for our company but in a sense everybody who works here is the decision-maker regarding their field of competency. I rely on them to tell me if I can do something better or in a different way. We are small and we are going to stay small so it is the teamwork that matters here. How about your corporate culture when it comes to the way you approach your clients? PF: We want to know our clients. We want to know their business as well as they know their business. We don’t want to be just an outside service provider who shows up at their office once a week or so, but we want to know the client’s business inside out because that’s the way for us to provide effective legal services. Clients often do not know if they have the right questions for the lawyer. They do not always tell you everything because they think some bits of information are irrelevant from a legal point of view. But they are wrong. mJ: Our culture is that we deeply engage with our clients at an intellectual and strategic level so they have confidence which encompasses the human factor—

they trust us. It is about understanding the clients at a human level, which is important because it gives you a better insight into what they think and with it you deliver a better professional service as a lawyer. The other thing which is important to us is that we have built a reputation over the years that reflects the high quality of work we deliver. Over the years, many clients have passed their business from other law firms on to us and they have come to us because they were not happy about the quality of work of their former lawyers. So, we take the quality of what we do very seriously and pay a lot of attention to that. When the work is done the result is of the highest quality and delivered within the time frame that has been agreed with the client. We know that in their business they have some specific time constraints and we can not be the sub-contractor who delays the pace of their business dealings. We have to adjust to their needs. We have to keep their pace. Each client is a demanding client. I always try to improve something about what I do when compared to my past dealings with clients. I pay attention to their needs and expectations, but what is equally important, I try to learn about their negative past experiences in dealing with lawyers—if they are willing to share, of course. This is educational and very important for us if we are to deliver a service which is really crafted to the client's needs. So we do not provide our services on some catalog basis—one size fits all. We adjust to our clients on a client-by-client basis. what are your plans for 2017 and beyond? mJ: We will grow to some extent in 2017. The optimal number of lawyers working for us would be 15. We cooperate with more lawyers now but it is on a subcontracting basis. Even if we think of the target number of 15 lawyers we will collaborate with much more off-counsels who will cover the areas in which we do not have enough competences. PF: We are here for the long-term. I don’t want to have 20 new clients every year because they keep firing me. I want to have a certain number of new clients each year who will stay with me and we grow with their business. In the end it makes our job much more effective if we have clients who we have been working with for years. You feel more comfortable about your future working with such clients too. No treadmill mentality here.

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Company profile Vistra Poland

On the way up

with offices in the americas, europe and asia it seems that Vistra has a well-established global presence. How about in the Polish market? Globally, as Vistra Corporate Services, we employ 2,800 professionals across 71 offices in 42 jurisdictions. These numbers will grow this year. Vistra Poland, as it is today, was established in March 2004 as Trinity Corporate Services. In late 2006, a majority of the ownership was sold to a private equity fund. This was the driver for further growth into other jurisdictions in CEE. With this, we also established offices in other cities in Poland, including Kraków, Wrocław and Poznań. Within the eight years with private equity investors, we have shown tremendous growth, and it was just natural that by 2014 our current the fund sold its stake in our company. In November 2014, a transaction was concluded with Vistra Group and Trinity rebranded to Vistra in early 2015. what is the scope of services that Vistra provides? Globally Vistra provides services under four business divisions, namely: Alternative Investments, which is fund administration; Company Formation; Corporate and Private Clients; and International Expansion. In Poland and the CEE region, Vistra focuses on international expansion services. Whenever a new corporate wants to expand its business globally or enter a market we are in, we can support and facilitate the process. Typically, a new client would need a company to be fully registered and functional, require monthly accounting and tax compliance, HR and payroll services, as well as the provision of directors in a fiduciary role, and a back-office administration or corporate secretarial support for the annual general meeting. Vistra can provide all those services, giving clients peace of mind when it comes to knowing that their operations are in good hands and they can focus on their core services.

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AMERICAN INVESTOR SPRING 2017

Photo courtesy of Vistra Corporate Services

American Investor's Tom Ćwiok talks with Alwyn Jacobus de Lange, managing director for Central and Eastern Europe at Vistra Poland, about the company's progress and plans

There is much more business coming in, driven by new foreign direct investment and our incumbent clients showing drive for expanding their business as well. what is driving the market for corporate services in Poland? Without the necessary knowledge and experience in the local market, new investors tend to outsource certain functions within their organization. Coupled with the tight labor market, this is a big driver behind the need for corporate and local compliance services. Notwithstanding various challenges, the local economy seems to be gaining momentum again and the growth of Poland's gross domestic product forecasts for 2017 shows upward trend from the 2016 numbers, with even higher forecasts for 2018. We do feel there is much more business coming driven

by new foreign direct investment and our incumbent clients showing drive for expanding their business as well. Having said that I must add that although I don't have a crystal ball I'm very optimistic about the near future and achieving our growth objectives this year. I believe that if we could successfully adapt to the challenges, we can still grow and be successful even during tough times. Challenges create opportunities. So, taking into consideration the fact that Poland is the largest economy in CEE, and after Brexit it will become the fifth largest EU economy, and also, it will continue to be the largest beneficiary of the EU cohesion policy funds in the EU, the country will continue to maintain its strong position as the key focus area for any pan-European investment project. More so, as Poland is set to outperform the Eurozone economy in 2017. what can you tell me about your corporate culture? We have always tried to keep things fun, whether there were stressful situations or not. As with any new, small startup, teamwork is essential, and good values and business principles were applied and instilled at a very early stage of the company’s existence. We’ve worked hard over the years on maintaining an open and honest culture. Although our culture is becoming a bit more corporate now, we still try to behave like a small company. For instance, during lunch time our people can eat together, staff and the board members alike and our doors are always open so our people can, at any time, ask direct questions or be a hands-on contributor. We try to find a balance between work and play, by having summer and Christmas parties, and make sure we celebrate successes as often as we can with employees by way of social events after work. Sometimes it is easier said than done but we keep on trying. what are the company's plans for 2017 and beyond in Poland? From a strategic perspective, it is important we manage our current organic growth, which results in various challenges when it comes to recruitment of staff and office space. That is a nice problem to have I guess. We will invest heavily in the staff and various HR initiatives to ensure we continue to provide quality and timely services to our clients and manage their expectations well. During 2017 and beyond we also plan substantial investments in new IT systems, and potential acquisitions. We definitely plan to exceed expectations and perhaps conquer the world!


Company profile Eversheds Sutherland

Hands across the ocean American Investor’s Tom Ćwiok talks with Krzysztof Wierzbowski, managing partner at Wierzbowski Eversheds Sutherland, and Mark Wasserman, managing partner at Eversheds Sutherland US, about what the combination of Eversheds and Sutherland Asbill Brennan, means for business

kw: Without a presence in America Eversheds’ ambition to be a global practice would not be satisfied. We have been working with American clients for many years and they were asking questions about extending our services to the US.

Photos courtesy of Eversheds Sutherland

why was the decision to combine eversheds and sutherland asbill Brennan?

mw: When we were separate we had a number of joint clients with whom we have been working with for years. After the combination, these clients can work with one network to handle work in different jurisdictions around the world. Companies based in Poland doing business in the US and companies that have operations in Poland and Krzysztof Wierzbowski and Mark Wasserman example, in real estate and labor and emthe rest of Central and Eastern Europe ployment we can provide multinationals will be able to have their work and relationships handled by one firm. Culturally, around the world with extensive data analytics. For instance, we can be the one the combined practice across all of our offices, has a similar approach to building point of contact and we can take client information and provide analysis to clients long-term relationship with the clients. that allows them to be more efficient in their legal operation. So we are doing kw: We carried out thorough research much more than just providing legal before the combination and did not idenservices—we are adding value by using tify any major conflicts of interest. It may technology to help our clients in their happen in the future as often is the case business around the world. with big international law firms. But having contacted our clients we feel very opkw: Both firms were advanced in techtimistic about what we can do now for a nology. Technology is necessary to serve large number of them. global clients. So we can help our clients strategize or take directions in developing mw: We did extensive research before their business. We at Eversheds develjoining forces and found out that culturoped that part of business a long time ago ally the firms area good fit and our client profiles and our philosophy of client serv- and our business consulting practice is offering consulting services in a range of ice were all very well matched. Plus, we can now offer technology solu- law-related business issues. Many global clients want to optimize their expenditions as part of our global network. For 26

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tures by monitoring them better and managing them more efficiently, so now as a firm with global reach, Eversheds Sutherland can do that by continuing to deliver global offerings to global clients. what examples can you give of your consulting practice? kw: When companies develop, expand, merge or restructure they need to build their legal departments anew and we may advise them on how this process should be done so the final result suits the new structure in the most optimal way. Also, companies, when putting together large transactions, may also temporarily need more lawyers and we can delegate competent lawyers to help them. Another area where our consultants may help is compliance. Compliance is becoming a very critical area with strict regulations from the US, such as Foreign Corrupt Practices Act, and in the EU, such as regulations of the financial markets or personal data protection. Advising effectively in those areas goes well beyond the traditional legal advice because it is not only about advising on the legal aspects of those regulations but also on technical and organizational aspects which, when applied by our clients, prevent them from breaching the regulations. To provide effective advice in those and other areas our Consulting depart-


ment at Eversheds consists not only of lawyers but also of specialists in IT, finance and other business areas. The combined expertise from those professionals can lead our clients to establishing effective compliance systems in their organizations. So our capacity goes well beyond traditional legal services—we are a trusted business adviser. Competent business lawyers are those who have sound judgement in business related areas, not just providing technical legal advice. This is what the market requires today. To what degree do business lawyers have to have an understanding of the business they provide services for? mw: The best lawyers and the lawyers that are valued most by their clients are the ones who have additional perspectives and who are doing more than only trying to provide answers to the legal issues of their clients. In fact, this is another cultural issue that I think both firms share. We go out of our way to make sure that we understand our clients’ industry in deep ways so we can be a trusted advisor who helps them strategize about their next business moves. We bring a legal viewpoint to what our clients are doing but we do not give them that information in a vacuum. We look at legal analyses and we are focused on helping our clients do a better job running their business and making their business decisions. Ultimately it is up to them, of course, to make the ultimate business decision. what can each of the firms bring to the table so the two firms complement each other in their areas of competence... mw: What Sutherland brings to the table is our client relationships and our coverage in the US. We have a very large tax practice and a very large representation of worldwide insurance and reinsurance companies. One thing we will be looking to do is to expand that practice even more around the world. We also have a high level of expertise in some other areas, such as energy. In turn, Eversheds has a very strong practice in the banking area and we hope to grow that in the US. Globally we plan to grow the financial practice and this is another space where both firms have very strong practices and client relationship. kw: Each of the combined firms developed different areas of competence. Sutherland’s strong side is tax and financial, energy, and major infrastructure

projects. Evershed’s strong point is real estate and HR, renewables, and public private partnership. We can supplement each other quite successfully globally — cross referral opportunities are immense. Eversheds for years has been named one of a few Innovative Firms of the Year by Financial Times. i wonder what are the new opportunities for the company which have appeared as a result of the combination? mw: We have found the client response to be very good. They are looking for innovations and different ways to get work done in an effective and efficient way around the world. What we want to do now is to help our clients in a way that we were not able to do by ourselves before. kw: A strong position in various areas of practice is an opportunity for us. Many companies have expressed their interest in working with us, especially those who feel more comfortable using the law firms originating from the US. Now, after the combination, they feel more at ease about working with us in Poland. So, with the difference in the scale of operations in Poland and the US, just a few projects shared with our American colleagues will amount to a leapfrog in development for the practice in Poland. what is the corporate culture of the combined firm? mw: From the very beginning the key thing for both firms was culture. You can have all the clients in common and complementary practices and geographies but if you don’t have people who see the world in the same way, than you have a problem. For me we were aligned on two important things: one is the way we think about clients and service. We found that similarity when we talked to every single partner at Eversheds. They have a dedication to clients—making sure that we’re doing everything we can to help our clients solve their problems. But maybe, most importantly, we found that the culture of respect in how people treat the people around the firm is the same in both organizations. Both firms have a very collegial culture where everybody in the firm, not just the lawyers, partners and senior management staff, but really everybody does their best and we all treat the people who work for us the best way possible. Both firms stress that what makes any combination more likely to succeed is people valuing each other.

kw: Collegiality is the word that Mark used and it was also the word which appealed to us when we were joining Eversheds years ago. It was not an approach of a big firm which was telling us what to do and how to run the business, but it was about asking us about our experience and what we thought would work here and there. So, this mutual respect and openness and readiness to learn from each other and adapt to the local market expectations is something very important. It is so because we are open, creative and innovative. So this type of culture helps us focus on business, our clients and their needs instead of office politics and the likes... what can you tell me about the challenges that the firm is facing as it becomes one network? mw: The challenge is working as hard as we can to get as many people from our firm to meet each other and to have an opportunity to get to know each other. It is important because people are more comfortable working with people with whom they have relationships. The same goes for working with clients. All partners are meeting in June which will be a great start in this effort. kw: We are divided into practice groups and people from those practices have to meet regularly. Our practice groups, such as litigation, real estate, HR, and M&A have held already many meetings attended by lawyers from both constituent firms. So it is a lot of work and it includes intensive traveling. what can you tell me about the plans of the combined firm for 2017 and beyond? mw: We are focused on integrating clients and client opportunities and relationships over the coming months. In a longer time perspective, a firm in Singapore, Harry Elias Partnership, will be joining us shortly. We will be focused on growing the relationships between Asia, Eastern Europe, and Western Europe as well as in the US. Geographically we are in the right places with alliance firms where we do not have offices in Africa, Latin America and parts of Asia. But again, what we see as our top priority over the next year or two is making sure that we are introducing our full capability to all our existing clients making sure we are maximizing the service and value we are providing to them.

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Company profile Hilton Warsaw Hotel & Convention Center

Complete confidence American Investor’s Tom Ćwiok talks with Robert Krygsman, general manager of Hilton Warsaw Hotel & Convention Center, about what is means to be a part of the Warsaw’s tourism market

it is a Friday afternoon and the hotel is packed with people attending a conference... Yes, we have a big conference today. Meetings are highly important to us as you can see—many meetings taking place today and yesterday and this weekend... We have the largest meeting facilities in the city which includes the largest ballroom, over 1,400 square meters, and we have over 3,000 square meters of flexible meetings place. Three floors with natural light. We have a meeting room on the 26th floor as well so it is four floors for meetings. We tend to be looked at the convention hotel for the city.

yet, there has been talk in the industry that warsaw needs a proper convention center to fully use its mice potential... Yes, we have been supporting this idea in our talks with city authorities. We have had meetings with the vice mayor of Warsaw and he is very supportive of the idea. To put Warsaw on the map as a MICE destination we need a convention center. It would benefit all the stakeholders: the hotels, the restaurants, the retail in the city... And Warsaw is not alone of the map of MICE destinations in this part of the world. Every colleague of mine that you may speak to would agree that this is 28

necessary if we want to compete with such cities as Munich and Frankfurt, Madrid and Barcelona, where they have facilities to to accommodate 10,000 visitors for an exhibition. We need such a facility here in Warsaw. For example, the Frankfurt Messe is huge and we need something like this here.

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MICE potential because when hotels are bidding for meetings we tend to be competing with other European cities, such as Barcelona, Vienna, Budapest and Prague because they are better marketed and currently very popular. Warsaw misses a great opportunity being its superior value for money. Warsaw is a brilliant city with a

To put Warsaw on the map as a MICE destination we need a proper convention center. It would benefit all the stakeholders, including the hotels, the restaurants, and the retail in the city.

Photo courtesy of Hilton

This year marks the 10th anniversary of the Hilton warsaw Hotel and convention center. what can you say about those first 10 years? We are very happy with out first 10 years in Warsaw. Certainly, first few years were more challenging but the European Cup EURO 2012 was great for us and the past couple of years with all the new development in our area have been brilliant. We are very lucky here because Poland was one of few EU countries which was not impacted by the collapse of the market of 2008. The economy of Poland has remained strong and it is a thriving place now.

The biggest facilities at the moment are at Warsaw’s national sports arena, were the NATO Summit was held last year. It is not, however, the ideal location because it is not tailor-made for what we are talking about. Warsaw needs a facility that is built as a convention center. A sports stadium that has convention possibilities is not a convention center. apart from a proper convention center, what would you say warsaw needs to do to become a hot spot on the mice map of europe? The market has been growing not only in Warsaw but in the entire country tremendously which, in the case of Warsaw, is underestimated. As a city, Warsaw should be better promoted when it comes to its

great infrastructure, with great local connectivity and an airport with convenient access to the city. But Warsaw needs to market all of this far better to really compete more with Prague and Budapest in particular because those cities are really on the map. But Prague and Budapest are not the only challenges that we have. We compete very much also with Kraków and little bit less with Gdańsk and some other cities in Poland. There are many great cities in Poland for tourism: Łódź, which is a well-know film center; Kraków which is the cultural center of the country in some ways; Wrołcaw is about IT and banking, which is growing. Warsaw really needs to be out there and share what is great about the city.


I go to some big shows, big international tourism exhibitions and Poland has a stand but it is hard to differentiate it against other similar stands. The last one I attended was in Israel, the IMTM in Tel Aviv in February, and Poland had a great stand. But what were the biggest pictures on the stand? It was Kraków and Mazury Lake District. There was very little information about Warsaw. I was at the Hilton stand and I went over to the Polish stand and met some colleagues whom I work with in Warsaw, and we agreed that we need to make a much bigger effort in pointing out what is unique about Warsaw and what you can do in Warsaw as a tourist. as Hilton warsaw, do you undertake any initiatives on your own to promote your location? We play our part in the hotel industry. From the Hilton perspective, we invite many familiarization trips for travel agents and trade journalists from the UK, Germany, the US, and Canada. We also work with the Warsaw Tourism Organization to promote Warsaw on those trips. Our guests take the experience back with them to their cities and try sell packages or experiences in Warsaw. Resoundingly,the reactions are positive. I believe the city authorities can play a part in this and its people responsible for promoting the city in more creative ways. what is Hilton’s offer for individual tourists? It is very difficult in this day and age to be unique in so much as we, hotels, are all providing rooms, safe places to stay, restaurants and bars etc. Where hotels can differentiate is service: we do differentiate in giving a higher level of service. Our loyalty program is, in my view, the best in the hospitality indus- try, and we provide some extra services too. For instance, we probably have the best fitness center of any hotel in town... Attracting individual tourist is more about things that the leisure traveller particularly wants. Business travelers want the key to their room, quick access to the room, room service, quick breakfast, nonstop check-out and good quality free internet. Leisure travelers have more time and are therefore, in some ways, are more challenging because they want the experience. Luckily, we have the people and the facilities that can provide that. The service aspect is crucially important because of the history of our brand. People coming to a Hilton Hotel have higher expectations as we are the most recognized brand in the Hospitality Industry. So with that recognition comes responsibility. We strive to be the best in every

market we are in. We have a large number of standards that we live up to. To attract Family Business we have a number of initiatives including Kids Eat free under a certain age, kids stay free in their parents rooms, special kids amenities, to name a few. This really helps to attract familyoriented business. For leisure travelers who are not traveling with children it is about sightseeing and relaxation. It helps to have a concierge who is well-connected within the city can get reservations to the best restaurants, knows every museum, and other attractions in the city, and it helps to have the finest Fitness Center and Pool in town. How about millenials? Millenials want things that are quite different—it is all about social media, speed of internet, ease of access, creative F&B, and, comfortable spaces to relax in... As a company we are definitely innovative in that respect. We have our Hilton apps, including online check-in, which also lets guests to choose their room before they arrive. They can check in on their phone so they only have to go to the reception to get their key. Our hotels in the USA and rolling out to all our hotels across the world will soon have the availability to use their smart phones as their key to their room. Hilton has always been an innovator in the industry and you don’t get to our level of brand recognition without being the leader that we are in the industry. The hospitality industry is people intensive, so to speak. meanwhile, many companies in Poland highlight problems with recruiting the right people. How do you cope with that situation? We absolutely have challenges in recruiting. One of the ways in which Hilton is solving this is that we are very active in getting young people into work. We want to entice graduates of High School, and Universities into the hospitality business. I grew up in a hotel family and I started working in an early age. I always found it a very attractive industry because I have seen what it is like as a kid growing up. I have lived on all continents except South America and have seen the world thanks to my Father’s job, and now mine. So I believe it is crucial that we teach young people how exciting the industry is. That has been something that I have done in Hilton since I joined the company—working with schools. We have many trainees that we work with from a number of schools in Warsaw trying to promote hospitality as a career choice by bringing them up and showing them to try it out. We are very keen in getting

young people to view the hospitality business as a great career choice. It is a battle because, especially now, most young people view hospitality as hard work and underpaid. Sure, it is hard work, but it is vastly rewarding and can provide you with a great life: You have an opportunity to travel to meet great people all over and it is an exciting job. It is ever-changing and you never get bored. what would you like to achieve personally in your terms as the boss of Hilton warsaw? You always want to leave a bit of your mark and be successful but success is not just in the numbers. I tend to really emphasize on people in the hotel as a team. I try to look after the people as best as I can. Sometimes leaders forget that their success is thanks to everybody else in the team. I’m trying very hard to embed that philosophy within the hotel ensuring that there is a sense of pride in what they do. There is also a comfort in knowing that if you make mistake it is ok as long as you don’t make the same mistake twice. So we change the ambience trying to make it very much like family. I know it sounds a bit old fashioned but it is not just a job for which you get paid but a place where you want to come because you know you will be respected and you will have opportunities because they are crucial to young and ambitious professionals. We have many young people in the hotel who are highly intelligent and want to progress. I make sure that they understand that they can achieve that with us. Hilton have presence all over the world and there are opportunities everywhere, and this is crucial to keep a motivated team. So if the people here say that it is how they feel, I will think I have succeeded. But I’m likewise a leader of a business responsible to many stakeholders, so for sure, the numbers are also very important! what are the hotel’s plans for 2017? It is our 10-year-Anniversary this year, and we are investing for the next 10 years and beyond. Our hotel is in excellent condition, but we will be doing a bit of a refreshing, including our ballroom and foyer, restaurant and bar; launching a new terrace concept, and completely reequipping our main kitchen. We are also investing in IT throughout the building. Continual investment in our product keep the Hilton Warsaw at the forefront of our market.

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Company profile IBBC Group

Know your risks American Investor’s Tom Ćwiok talks with Bartosz Pastuszka, managing director of IBBC Group, part of Pinkerton, about the growing market of security and risk management services

what services do you offer in Poland? Our services are divided into preventive measures and operational activities. In preventive services, we offer advice on compliance, background screening, technical counter surveillance measures and preventing any kind of losses due to fraud and brand protection. Operational services include forensic audit, investigative services, VIP protection and comprehensive support in crisis situations. We offer Crisis Management Planning. It is about making a detailed plan which describes the various actions which need to be taken during critical situations to ensure operational continuity. It gives a detailed overview of the roles and responsibilities of each employee during crisis so the managers can take quick and relevant actions. In that kind of crisis situations we are able to use Pinkerton’s global

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what is the driving force for your business in Poland? In Poland, as well as in other countries of Central and Eastern Europe, indicators on corruption and frauds are still high. So this is the primary driver. Also, the geopolitical situation in the region makes the risk of conducting business much higher than in other European countries. These factors determine the rapid development of the market for such services.

Photo courtesy of IBBC Group

what can you tell me about the history of iBBc Group in Poland? IBBC Group was established in early 2007 on the basis of my experience in risk management and security that I acquired working with foreign investors who began to enter the Polish market after Poland’s accession to the European Union. In time I built a team of professionals, associates, and a strategic partnership with Seccredo within the Securitas capital group. With the growing market and a portfolio of satisfied clients and a number of completed projects we were in a position to become a part of the the legendary Pinkerton company. Pinkerton traces its roots to 1850 when Allan Pinkerton founded Pinkerton's National Detective Agency. Throughout its rich history, Pinkerton created a forerunner to the US Secret Service, hired America's first woman detective, and ever since it has remained the industry leader in developing innovative security and risk management solutions for national and international corporations. Our company is currently going through a rebranding process and our team is responsible for the Pinkerton activities in Central and Eastern Europe.

Maryland, Baltimore County Training Centers. As a result, our team is professionally trained to effectively assist companies in coping with the crisis situations to help companies in crisis and in the process of recovering from the crisis.

In Poland, and in other countries of Central and Eastern Europe, indicators on corruption and frauds are still high. This is what is predominantly driving our market forward. network of high qualified agents all over the world. Additionally, in 2014, Pinkerton became the first company in Poland to get certified Resilient Leadership from the Resiliency Science Institute of University of

what can you tell me about the corporate culture of the company? We provide services mainly in crisis situations, such as frauds, corruption, life and resources danger, and others, which obliges us to act in strict confidentiality, compliance with the letter of the law and ethical values. We build relationships with our customers and partners primarily on mutual trust. So our culture focuses on trust and it requires that our people are highly professional and efficient. what are your company's plans for 2017 and beyond? We will focus mainly on developing our competence in Central and Eastern Europe. We will provide global services via Pinkerton international structures for European companies—including Polish companies—who are in need of risk management in different parts of the world. We also plan to make significant investments in technological solutions. For instance, we are buying one of the most technically advanced systems for technical counter surveillance measures.


AmCham Advisory Council... ... accumulates the knowledge and experience of its member companies and is a point of advice to the AmCham Board of Directors. With its global business expertise the Council has helped the American Chamber of Commerce in Poland to become one of the leading advocates of business in the country.

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Expert Technology

I robot

By Marek Trojnarski, counsel, Dentons’ Warsaw office, member of the Intellectual Property, Technology and Communications practice team

Will there be laws on artificial intelligence?

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obots... They already help us a lot and their future looks bright. For example, IBM Watson helped diagnose an illness in a Japanese woman, resulting in life-saving therapy which was delivered much faster than standard. Some say that autonomous flying cars may free us from traffic jams. Some robots can play poker and beat humans, even though the game is seen as a bastion of mankind. But what if IBM Watson replaced not just 34 office employees, as it did recently in a Japanese insurance company, but a large number of white collar workers too? Such questions are leading legal institutions around the world to consider developing a legal framework, in which robotics and artificial intelligence can develop. The European Parliament (EP) has set the pace by passing a resolution that calls on the European Commission to work on a directive on robotics and artificial intelligence (AI). It refers, in particular, to robots that have the capacity to be trained and make decisions independently. The EP looked at the economic potential of the revolution that may take place over the next 10-15 years and wanted to ensure the safety of users while avoiding unnecessary dead ends in R&D. This is the thrust of the EP’s resolution of 16 February 2017 on Civil Law Rules on Robotics. Liability The EP is pushing the development of EU-wide rules governing civil liability for damage caused by robots, including, in particular, autonomous (driverless) vehicles. Currently, to establish who is liable we would have to apply available principles/doctrines of civil law, such as fault or risk based lia32

bility, according to the local rules in force in each Member State. The EP seeks to harmonize these rules. In addition, the EP’s proposed approach is based on a risk management approach, so that those best placed to mitigate risk of damage would be expected to do so. We would also have a mandatory insurance scheme, as we already have with cars. Finally, the EP suggests setting up a compensation fund which could be supplemented by manufacturers, programmers, owners, and other stakeholers, so as to limit their liability in situations where, for example, damage is not covered by mandatory insurance. autonomous vehicles The EP welcomes and wishes to support the cross-border use of autonomous vehicles. To this end, it advocates new amendments to traffic accident laws. As is the case with other robots, the introduction of autonomous vehicles requires testing in real-life scenarios, including on the road. The EP has called on the European Commission to draw up uniform EU-wide criteria for such tests. Finally, the development of driverless road traffic requires efficient ICT infrastructure. The EP supports these projects and is urging the completion of the European satellite navigation systems Galileo and EGNOS. The Robotics agency A European agency for robotics and AI will likely be set up. In addition to monitoring the development of robotics and AI, the agency could handle the registration of certain types of robots to allow victims of robot-caused damage to identify those liable and to recover data on the applicable robot insurance policy. In this

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context, the EP considers to introduce a mandatory drone identification and tracing system. Accidents involving drones already take place and the USA has seen its first court case where an operator was convicted for damage done by a drone crash. Privacy The development of robotics and AI requires safeguards for the protection of data and the privacy of users or those affected by robot operations. As with any device that has Internet access, a robot can be hacked. Malware planted in a kitchen robot equipped with sensors and able to move about the house can turn it into a device that spies on people and sends out data via the Internet. To meet this challenge, the EP is considering imposing far-reaching duties on robot users to obtain express consent to process any third party data collected by robots. intellectual property Harmonization of technical standards in robotics could be as desirable as it was in cell phone technology. If robots are to interact with each other to achieve their users' purposes, they should be able to communicate effectively. The EP is mulling over whether access to source code and construction specifications should be available when needed to investigate accidents caused by robots. The same idea underpins moves to use "black boxes" to record robots' logs and decision making processes. e-personality Autonomous robots will make autonomous decisions. They will use, say, artificial neural networks to build on their own experience, mistakes and successes to adapt to everyday challenges. To what

extent, if any, will the programmer be liable for the decisions of the robot? Should robots have duties—or even rights—in the same way that people and companies do? To address those issues, the EP is eyeing the introduction of an "electronic" personality in the long run to serve various purposes, such as helping to identify a robot's liability for damage. Labor market The EP is aware of the potential that autonomous robots have to impact the labor market in future: truck drivers, medical personnel, white collar workers, and other classes of personnel may become redundant. We could all be affected. The EP has called on the European Commission to investigate how that revolution might impact the labor market. While the resolution does not expressly endorse it, perhaps a solution can be found by introducing the recently mooted idea of a universal basic income... code of ethics Finally, the EP proposes a code of basic ethics to underpin the development, programming and design of robots, so that programmers would be required to consider how humanity may be threatened by the development of artificial and autonomous intelligence. For example, humans should have ultimate control over smart robots and therefore must not be denied access to the socalled kill switch. The European Commission may draw up a directive now. If, however, the commission does not accept the stance presented by the EP, it will be required to justify its refusal.


Labor

Tackling abuse of the system

By Michał Chodkowski, advocate, partner, Łaszczuk & Partners

A proposed new system may make it more difficult for legitimate employers to hire workers from abroad

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n April 2016, the Ministry of Family, Labor and Social Policy began work on changing the rules for hiring foreigners in Poland. The reason for the changes is to implement the EU’s Seasonal Workers Directive (2014/36/EU). To do this, the first draft of a bill amending the Act on Promotion of Employment and Labor Market Institutions of April 20, 2004, was published last year. Over the following months, the draft underwent numerous revisions. First, the ministry proposed to eliminate the mechanism under which an employer could hire foreigners on the basis of a declaration of its intention, registered with the appropriate authorities. Then the authors changed their mind and decided to retain this mechanism, but with more restrictions. In March 2017 yet another version of the draft was submitted to the Council of Ministers for approval. Apart from changes in what is required for companies to hire foreigners, the latest version also introduces a new type of work permit: a seasonal worker permit. defining seasonal workers Under the latest proposal, a seasonal worker permit would be required for a foreigner to perform seasonal work in Poland under a contract with an employer whose registered office or residence, or branch, establishment or other form of organized activity, is located in Poland. A seasonal worker permit would be issued for a fixed period of no longer than nine months within a calendar year, and for no longer than three consecutive years. The compe-

tent authority to issue such permit would be the starosta (the head of the county government). The draft also provides that the types of employment actually constituting seasonal work will be specified in an executive regulation issued by the ministry, based on subclasses of activities under the Polish Classification of Activity (PKD).

prospective employer if the starosta has reasons to believe that the declaration was filed only as a pretense, the declaration would be used by the foreigner for some purpose other than performing work for the person filing the declaration, or the prospective employer fails to perform statutory obligations connected with its business or hiring.

identifying abuses The occasion of implementing the Seasonal Workers Directive gives lawmakers an opportunity to address yet another problem with hiring of foreigners, not limited to seasonal workers. The authors of the draft say that one of purposes of the new regulations is to tighten the procedure for issuing permits to employ people from Armenia, Belarus, Georgia, Moldova, Russia and Ukraine, as it transpired that many people were fraudulently declaring their intention of hiring individuals from those countries, when their true intention was to earn a fee for arranging a legal basis for people from those countries to enter Poland. At present there are no effective instruments for combating these abuses. The proposed remedy is to change the declaration system. The plan is that the declaration procedure would cover not only foreigners from the six countries indicated above, but all foreigners regardless of their country of origin. The starosta would continue to be the competent authority for administering the declaration system. The starosta would be empowered to refuse to register a declaration of intent to employ foreigners submitted by a

more questions It is difficult to assess what consequences might follow from the change proposed in the draft in the rules for performance of work on the basis of a declaration of the intention to hire a foreigner. But there is no doubt that apart from the positive effect of combating abuses, tightening the procedure would also generate additional formalities and could prolong the waiting time before foreigners obtain rights to work in Poland. When the parliament debates the proposed new regulations, it is nearly certain that new amendments will be introduced. The final effect of the new regulations is now difficult to predict. Therefore, anyone who hires foreigners or intends to hire foreigners should remain vigilant. The amendment is expected to be adopted soon, as Poland is already late with the new law. The deadline for transposition of the Seasonal Workers Directive was September 2016.

Local authorities could refuse to accept a declaration by a Polish employer intending to hire foreigners if the employer’s intentions are suspicious.

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Expert Tax risk management

Danger zone

By Małgorzata Sajkiewicz, attorney at law, expert in tax risk management, head of German Desk at Wierzbowski Eversheds Sutherland

New regulations governing taxes spell trouble

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avigating through the complex Polish tax system has never been so challenging and risky. In response to recent changes in Polish tax law and the intensification of fiscal administration activities aiming at increasing the income of the state budget, tax risk management should become a major consideration for most Polish companies. new risks There are too many changes to Polish tax laws to discuss here. But recent shake up to the system includes, to start with, the controlled-foreign-companies (CFCs) regime, introduced in 2015, which allows tax authorities to impose Polish income tax at the Polish taxpayer's level on income generated by the taxpayer's CFCs. Another regulation is the general anti-avoidance clause (GAAR), introduced in 2016, which aims to prevent the creation and exploitation of artificial legal structures to avoid taxation in Poland. Other regulations that companies should be aware of today are the implementation of transfer pricing rules following the BEPS model in 2016; the introduction of SAFT reporting obligations in 2016, and the re-introduction of penalties for understating VAT debt up to 100 % of the VAT arears in 2017. Harsh penalties Stricter penalties for fiscal crimes were introduced earlier this year, among others, for participation in the so-called VAT carrousel or issuing or using fraudulent invoices. If the amount fraudulently invoiced is substantial, in certain cases, the court may sentence the perpetrator for up to 25 years behind bars, which is the highest penalty under Polish criminal law. It is the same penalty as for committing first-degree mur-

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der. The rationale In general, the changes to the Polish tax system are aiming to “close remaining loopholes” and increase the income of the state budget, especially from VAT and income taxes. The changes also reflect Poland's commitment to stop tax base erosion and profits shifting (BEPS), and to implement the OECD's recommendations. The verification and improvement of the company’s existing tax management system or introduction of such a system may be the best response to the recent amendments to the Polish tax system. Risk flags An effectively implemented tax management system may create added value for the organization in many areas. It may provide the company with an ability to identify early and change bad practices in the organization which could lead to tax arrears even before any tax risk is created. The company can gain the ability to proactively evaluate legislative changes and the potential impact on business. A desired level of comfort for all stakeholders that tax risk is maintained at an acceptable level may be achieved through an effective tax management system. Such comfort is of particular interest for board members, who are liable with their personal assets for taxes in the company according, to Polish law, and who may be may be liable if the company's taxes are unpaid. A properly implemented tax management system may constitute solid evidence that the board member/CFO adheres to the highest professional standards when performing obligations related to finances and taxes. This may be a useful defense tool in case the

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company tries to claim damages from a board member for damage in relation to its tax affairs. Technically, tax risk management is dedicated to setting up processes, workflows and procedures that allow you to identify the tax risk at the earliest possible moment, assess it, measure it and neutralize or limit the negative consequences. Any efficient tax management program starts with mapping the current tax risk management procedures, processes (for example: procurement, sales), and workflows. Transactions and processes in the organization should be grouped and flagged with a “risk flag”. managing processes Adequately to the "risk flag" system, the processes, workflows and procedures should be verified or set up in a manner ensuring that tax risks are managed in the best possible manner. Appropriate procedures, properly functioning processes and workflows are not the only tools through which an effective tax risk management may be introduced. Other accessible tools for tax risk management are binding tax rulings, advanced transfer-pricing agreements with tax authorities, engaging external tax advisors, regular workshops on taxes for the financial, tax and accounting team of the company as well as for board members, monitoring the tax developments relevant to the company. A tax management system in the company works well only if frequent audits of tax risk management processes, workflows and procedures are introduced and the quality of the communication between team and the individuals in the organization is high. A general health-check of the tax management system is also necessary in case of signifi-

cant changes in tax law and internal reorganizations, including changes to IT systems, mergers and acquisitions, and changes to the business. Looking ahead A complete tax management system encompasses also tax planning and tax reporting (tax compliance). Tax planning is particularly crucial in the case of core business restructuring and fast expansion or in case of tax changes which influence the way the business is run. Tax reporting is usually set up in every company as a part of its ERP system. To ensure that tax risks are well managed, the reporting tools and applications must reflect the systematic changes in tax law or new reporting obligations, such as new SAFT obligations or obligations related to CFC companies. The ultimate challenge for a CFO and the tax executive in the company is to ensure that the tax risk management framework is indeed implemented, adhered to throughout the organization and updated in response to the tax law developments, the new approach of tax authorities and other external and internal changes of the business environment. Every individual in the organization involved in taxes should understand the importance of tax management, and know and fulfill their obligations in this respect. In conclusion, the importance of tax management in Poland can be hardly overrated. A systematic tax management is not just a “nice-to-have” but a "must have" in any company which intends to limit the risks involved in dealing with the Polish tax system.


Social security

The benefits of totalization

By Jason Watters, vice president for Europe, Reilly Financial Advisors

Understanding the US and Polish social security systems

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ost US citizens know that they are required to pay into the US Social Security system if they wish to receive benefits during their retirement. When living in the US, this process is straightforward; the taxes are generally deducted from your income as a payroll tax. These payments accumulate as credits during your working years in order to qualify for future retirement benefits. But what happens when you live outside of the US and you also pay into the Polish, or another country’s, social retirement system? us social security First, it is important to understand how the US social security system works; the US uses a credit system where citizens accumulate credits, which then translate eventually into retirement or disability benefits. As of 2017, you receive one credit for every $1,300 of earnings. However, the maximum credits an individual can earn per year is four credits. To receive full retirement benefits, one must have received 40 credits minimum, which usually equates to 10 full working years. If you have achieved 40 credits, you will receive a full US benefit upon reaching the eligible age. However, the amount of this benefit can vary. The benefit amount one receives at retirement is calculated using the 35 highest earning years of the individual. Thus, if you only worked and paid 20 years worth of Social Security taxes in the US, your benefit amount may be lower because you did not pay in for a full 35 years. Totalization agreements But what happens if you have less than 40 credits thus far and no longer work in the US? Luckily, the United States has formed Social Security agreements with

certain countries called “Totalization Agreements”. These agreements help to ease the burden of having to pay into two Social Security systems. The purpose of totalization agreements is to eliminate dual social security taxation by the country of residence and the country of origin, allowing citizens to pay into only one system at a time. It also serves as a way to use credits to qualify for benefits in one country when time has been spent working abroad. The US entered into a totalization agreement with Poland in 2009. This agreement eliminates the need to pay both US Social Security tax as well as Polish Social Security tax, in most circumstances. The agreement allows partially obtained Polish credits to be converted into US credits and vice versa, depending on which country’s benefit one wishes to receive. The aim is to assist those with partial credits who would not normally qualify for full benefits in either country to transfer credits and become eligible. Polish social security Unlike in the US, the Polish Social Security system does not use credits for accumulating benefits, but rather the benefit is calculated by months paid. The main social insurance benefit provider is the ZUS which has a two-tier system for paying out retirement benefits. The first tier is a voluntary pay-as-you-go system in which an individual can contribute to a benefit account over the span of their career and their retirement benefit is directly tied to the amount they’ve contributed. The second tier acts more as a privately managed open pension fund, most comparable to a defined-contribution plan. Like in the US, the Polish ZUS will pay out monthly retirement benefits at normal retirement age, as well as disability

and survivor benefits in certain situations. combining benefits The totalization agreement allows partial credits gained in the Polish system to be converted to US credits, so long as the individual has at least six credits earned in the US initially. In most cases, the US will accept one credit to be received for every three months of Polish credits paid. If an individual qualifies for full US benefits (having earned 40 credits) then they are not eligible for totalization benefits as they will receive a full benefit from the US already. If one does not have enough US credits to qualify for full benefits, these partially earned Polish credits can be used in hopes of gaining eligibility for US benefits. On the other hand, if you do not have enough credits in the Polish system for full benefits, you may convert your US credits to Polish credits in the hope of gaining eligibility for benefits in Poland. However, in order to combine these credits, you must have earned at least twelve months worth of Polish coverage initially. To summarize, if you have partial credits in one or both countries, you can use both US and Polish credits to help you qualify for benefits in the country of your choice. With this comes a question which is the appropriate system to pay money to for Americans working in Poland? As a general rule, if you work for a US employer and are sent to work in Poland for less than five years, you and your employer will continue to pay US social tax and are exempt from paying into the Polish system. However, if you’re sent to work in Poland for more than five years, or are moving indefinitely, you will then pay into the Polish system and not the US. In addition, if you are em-

ployed by a non-US employer or if you were hired within Poland, then you will pay into the Polish system. It is in these circumstances where you might find yourself having partial credits in both countries, thus making the totalization agreement highly beneficial when it comes to ensuring you are able to receive benefits at retirement in at least one country. us medicare United States Medicare is the country’s medical care program for citizens age 65 or older or those with certain disabilities. If you are eligible for, or receiving Social Security benefits in the US, you are also eligible for Medicare. Though the totalization agreement with Poland allows the combing of credits to receive retirement benefits, the agreement does not apply to Medicare. Partial Polish credits cannot be used to become eligible for hospital and other medical care in the United States. summary Paying into neither system is not an option; you are required to pay into at least one country’s social program. If you have paid into the US social security system, it is important to know where you stand in terms of credits and eligibility for benefits. To do this you can go to the website www.socialsecurity.gov and create an account under “My Social Security.” Upon doing so you can view your current statement and how many credits you have earned so far. This information is valuable for determining what types of benefits you may be eligible for and if you should continue paying into US social security. Understanding retirement benefits received through US and/or Polish Social Security are a crucial factor in successfully planning for your retirement.

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Expert Geopolitics

A brave new world

By Andrew de Roy, managing partner, CEE Consulting Group

Companies need proactive foreign policies

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he last year was seen by many as an annus horriblis in geopolitics. The broad consensus towards liberalism and democracy, which business leaders took for granted, was shaken in its foundations by contrary local political events and trends. However, while some were caught off guard by Brexit, the rise of right-wing populism, and alleged cyber-manipulation of elections, the risks associated with these events were anticipated and discussed by political analysts. An area of work which was increasingly seen as a “niche” in a world where liberal democracy and free markets were king, is now seen as essential for critical decision-making. What is quite clear now, is that business and corporate interests have never been more susceptible to external political factors. a news-accelerated reality We have seen in the past few years that countries and regions can go from relative stability to major political upheaval in the span of months or even weeks. We live at present in highlyaccelerated times, where single events can provoke fullblown crises in a blink of an eye, as events go “viral”.  Predicting the future is often not possible, and there will occasionally be lowprobability-high-impact “black swan” situations and events which create business turmoil. However, rather than merely reacting to external events, it is now becoming essential for top level executives to have a proactive foreign policy, and to conduct geopolitical due diligence to understand underlying global and local metatrends. A proper corporate foreign policy was not something which was considered necessary following the collapse of communism and the rise of a homogeneity of liberal and democratic values. However, in recent times the geopolitical risks to multinationals

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are real, and important to manage. Geopolitical due diligence may come to be considered as normal and necessary as legal, financial, environmental, or regulatory due diligence. We live in a highly networked age, which is breaking down old geopolitical systems. Communication is real-time and incessant. Existing political systems were formed in previous eras, and—in some respects—appear archaic in the accelerated technological times, in which we are living at present. Previous systems were predicated upon preserving stability, and harmony. Now, however, the only constant is flux, and change. Companies need to be aware of the underlying political meta-trends in the regions where they operate. areas to watch Examples of scenarios which companies may need to start planning for, may include: • Pressure for Saudi Arabian reform. Oil prices remain low, and scrutiny of the country’s human rights record is growing; • The potential collapse of the European Union or the Eurozone area, either due to the success of populist parties or to the failure of financial institutions in the PIGS; • A run on Chinese banks, as they deal with non-performing loan portfolios; • Climate change causing natural disasters and / or significant displacement of people in a susceptible country such as Bangladesh, resulting in regional tension; • Russian aggression. While the country is still a major player in geopolitical terms, its economy is struggling under the weight of sanctions and a lack of diversification. Its leadership might resort to external adventures to mask failings at home. Issues such as these increasingly affect all multinational corporations. It should now be considered essential for executives to

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seek international expertise before strategic decisions are made in areas such as market entry, supply chains, outsourcing of operations, and change management. Prior to 2016, this has been seen as a “nice to have”, where executives would pay lip service to corporate diplomacy, but did not give much weight to geopolitical trends as a key shaper in decisionmaking. A “country report”, ordered off the shelf from a big four or management consulting firm, was usually considered more than sufficient for evidencing to shareholders a company’s preparedness for the demands of doing business in a country or region. In today’s environment however, in order to mitigate such risks, senior business decision makers need strategic intelligence with forecasting / anticipatory value, followed by risk mitigation plans, if things go wrong (an “if-thenelse” plan). While perfect foresight is illusory, it is however possible to predict various potential scenarios that may result from major political events and trends, and to create action plans for such contingencies. Geopolitical analysis Multinationals that operate in these increasingly volatile times need to “privatize” techniques that have been used in the government sector for several decades. Geopolitical risk consultants can conduct bespoke due diligence exercises, including scenario planning which allows executives to be prepared for eventualities that they may face in the aftermath of significant political movements. This includes situations such as Russia, where businesses suffered severe restrictions in the wake of sanctions imposed following the annexation of Crimea. By contrast in Iran, where sanctions may—or may not—soon be relaxed, new opportunities could present themselves. By understanding geopolitical

trends, companies may find themselves in a position to gain firstmover advantage in nascent markets, or alternatively avoid catastrophe through preparedness. Likewise, transnational and regional issues increasingly need to be analyzed, and country-specific reviews by themselves can be insufficient. In highly networked times, movements in neighboring countries can move very quickly across borders, as witnessed in the cross-border nature of the Arab Spring movement, or the rise of populist parties across Europe. Geopolitical analysis can, conversely, demonstrate complexities operating within a specific jurisdiction. For instance, in Ukraine today, the business operating environment may remain challenging for some time in Eastern Ukraine, while in western Ukraine there may already be a relatively benign operating environment, and consequently opportunity for companies that are well prepared. In conclusion, geopolitical volatility should be considered similarly to other forms of volatility in business, and planned for in the same way. Good forecasting will never enable an executive to act with complete certainty, but geopolitical assessment processes will allow corporates to navigate the challenging times we are seeing globally at present. Conducting periodic macro assessments, in-country and within the wider regions of operation, will allow decision-makers to assess political risk and develop adequate response mechanisms, and prepare for potential eventualities. Companies will increasingly be judged not only by traditional methods of profit and revenue, but increasingly also in their foreign policy aptitude, and in their performance as good global citizens in the increasingly interconnected world in which we live.


Real estate law

The power of a commission

By Marcin Wnukowski, Partner, Squire Patton Boggs

Real estate reprivatization decisions in Warsaw may be revoked

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egislation passed by the Polish Parliament on March 9, 2017 grants a parliamentary commission the right to rescind re-privatization decisions previously issued with respect to real estate in the city of Warsaw. Such a rescission would remove the legal grounds for return of the property to the former owner or its legal successor, which could lead to seizure of the property by the government. Going back in time A brief history is required to understand the background of this law. During WW2, Warsaw was to a large extent destroyed. After the war, the new communist regime was determined to rebuild the city but felt a very little need to protect private owners of real estate. In 1945, the government enacted a decree that extensively nationalized real estate in Warsaw. In theory, the decree allowed the owners to apply for compensation, but in fact the it was very often denied. The one exception was if the owner was a foreign citizen, and in such cases the Polish government often signed agreements with other governments and paid a certain amount of money in exchange for a waiver of claims to the nationalized property in Warsaw. Years have passed, the old system collapsed and governments have changed, but Poland has still not dealt with the nationalization of Warsaw real estate. The lack of a comprehensive approach triggered waves of individual applications for reprivatization of Warsaw property illegally seized by the state. Heirs of the owners have tried to regain property, but the process has proved long and complex. In certain cases, reprivatization claims were sold to “real estate hunters” who bought them for pennies but were able to regain real property worth tens of millions of zlotys. The usual method was to challenge the deci-

sion to nationalize the property and to have it replaced with a new decision ordering the return of the property—the so-called “reprivatization decision”. It all turned into a large scandal when the magnitude of the process and methods used by certain real estate hunters recently came under intense scrutiny. Several persons implicated in this process have been arrested and members of the Warsaw government have been accused of negligence in safeguarding public property. The commission The current Polish government has decided to deal with the situation and the new piece of legislation provides for a solution, but it is, as one may clearly see, a very controversial one. The new act appoints a special commission, members of which are appointed by the prime minister and Parliament, with the main goal of “removing legal effects of reprivatization decisions issued in violation of law”. The members of the commission are not obliged to have any special qualifications, save for a law degree or “necessary knowledge in real estate management or the use of state property”. The members of the commission are granted immunity for their actions in such capacity. The commission is empowered to initiate, ex officio, proceedings to determine whether there are grounds to conduct an investigation. If in the commission’s view it is probable that a breach of law could have occurred when issuing a reprivatization decision, the commission can open an investigation and carry out proceedings aimed at eliminating the violation of law. During the proceedings, the commission may call the parties to appear, request searches of the property as well as the files of all court and administrative proceed-

ings and information connected with the process. The commission may also issue an interim relief by prohibiting disposal of the property that is the object of the proceedings. What is more, having conducted the investigation, the commission may, by virtue of its decision, uphold any reprivatization decision, rescind it in part or entirely or revert the matter to the authority that issued it for reevaluation. The repeal of a reprivatization decision removes the legal grounds for return of the property to the ex-owner or its legal successor, so one may assume the property will be seized by government. Big questions Real estate regained by ex-owners (or their successors) could have been sold to a third party. If the commission finds that the reprivatization decision was issued in breach of law but that irreversible legal effects have occurred, the commission confirms this by way of its decision. The act defines irreversible legal effects as transfer of the title of the property to a third party (other than transfers without consideration), provided that the third party acted in a bona fide manner, or use of the real estate for public purposes as defined in applicable law. Therefore, bona fide buyers of reprivatized properties should be protected with respect to their title to the property. The act provides for a long list of reasons that the commission may rely on to adopt its decision. Apart from typical reasons, such as the re-privatization decision being issued on the basis of false evidence or in consequence of a crime, the commission may also repeal the re-privatization decision if its issuance led to effects grossly contrary to the public interest, which gives the commission wide discretionary power to decide on repealing previously is-

sued decisions. What is very controversial is that the commission does not have to wait for a competent court to judge that the evidence was false or that a crime was committed but instead it may find that the crime is evident and thus effectively replace a court of law. Further, once the commission commences its proceedings, any proceedings related to the property in question (i.e., concerning damages, compensation for use of real estate or aimed at challenging the reprivatization decision) are suspended, and the act does not specify what shall happen once the commission issues such decision. more questions Another controversy is that the commission is, in the government’s plan, a special type of ad hoc administrative authority, the authority of which replaces and surpasses all other authorities, without any respect to their competences provided for in other acts. It is not clear whether the commission’s decision may be challenged before the administrative courts. One may assume that this would be possible under general principles of law, though the act does not say that. As existing law would very likely suffice to remedy the existing situation, the need for special measures is not justified simply on grounds of closing a gap in the legal system. The fact that the commission is vested with powers normally vested to courts of law, and that it ignores the rules of administrative proceedings and yet may issue decisions depriving citizens of property, may give rise to serious doubts as far as the constitutionality of the new piece of legislation is concerned.

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Expert Cyber security

Unhealthy menace

By Joanna Krakowiak, Life Science & Regulatory practice, Wardyński & Partners

Cybercrime poses big challenges for the Polish healthcare system

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n just over a year the EU’s General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR, 2016/679) will enter into force. Implementation of the GDPR presents particularly huge challenges for the Polish healthcare sector, where the risk of cyberattacks is high but awareness of the risk is low. The GDPR provides for severe fines for such infractions as inadequate security measures. Depending on the type of violation, fines can be as high as EUR 10-20 million, or in the case of businesses, up to 2% to 4% of their total turnover in the preceding financial year. The GDPR also requires that patients be notified of a data release, and ,in certain instances, this information must be published. On top of financial losses, huge losses to reputation must be factored in, and they can be harder to make up for than the financial loses alone. EU member states, including Poland, work currently on legislation implementing the GDPR, but the final shape of these national regulations is not yet determined. This work is particularly relevant to the healthcare sector, as the GDPR provides for adopting special standards for this sector.

digitisation of healthcare The healthcare sector in Poland is going digital. Medical data is stored in electronic form on hospitals’ computers. Telemedicine is growing rapidly, with patients’ diagnostic information transmitted to specialists in multiple locations. Various medical applications for self-administration by patients are also pop up. Medical robots are helping surgeons carry complex operations. New solutions using the Internet of Things are taking over tasks previously performed by medical personnel, enabling direct communication between medical devices and automatic establishment of parameters such as insulin dosages. With this, a successul treatment relies

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on the security of the hospital’s IT system.

cyber attacks The EU police, Europol, forecasts that in 2017, medical data of patients stored in poorly secured hospital systems may be a front line for cyberattacks. The dark side to technological progress is an increased risk of loss of data as a result of the actions of cyber criminals. In a common ransom attack scenario, a number of emails are sent to hospital staff. When the email is opened, it automatically installs malware called “ransomware” on the computer of the person who opened the it. The malware scans the network, blocks access to patient data and transmits it in encrypted form to the attacker’s computer. With the data lost and the hospital’s IT system blocked, the hospital cannot function. The scale of the threat is demonstrated by the example of the attack on the US firm Anthem, in which case there was a one-off escape of the data of over 78 million patients. It is estimated that in 2017–2021 the global value of losses from cyberattacks may reach USD 6 trillion, and the expenditures required to ensure cybersecurity during the same period will amount at least USD 1 trillion. Among healthcare professionals, however, there is little awareness of the enormity of the threat. A consequence of this is the lack of appropriate internal procedures for protecting IT systems, and this in turn is the immediate reason why inadequate security for sensitive patient data is still in place. american standards Among the many sets of cybersecurity standards and best practices developed by various institutions, one of the most popular is Computer Security Incident Handling, the NIST 800-61 standard

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developed by the National Institute of Standards and Technology at the US Department of Commerce. This standard can be applied in the healthcare sector. It is based on six steps: • Preparation. Identification of potential sources of computer security incidents, examining weaknesses in the protection of computers and networks, identifying people responsible for cybersecurity, assigning responsibilities to specific individuals and developing procedures for action and reporting in the event of a security incident. • Detection. If the monitoring of system operations indicates an irregularity, there is a risk that a cyberattack has occurred. The challenge is not only to detect the attack but also to determine the type of attack and the scale of the threat to data security. • Response. The response must not only be adequate to the threat, but also rapid if it is going to hold the losses to a minimum. For example, if one computer is infected with malware, cutting it off the system may limit the loss to the data stored on that device and prevent from spreading the malware to other computers in the system. • Eradication. Once the threat is stabilised, the risk factor must be eliminated for the future, by, among others, updating antivirus software and training staff on the safe use of email. • Recovery. Depending on the scale of the cyberattack, the return to normal operations may take several phases, for example, first a return to delivering emergency care, followed by a return to essential lifesaving procedures, and later scheduled surgery. On the IT side this will require regaining access to medical documentation and making necessary backup copies. • Improvement. Any occurrence of a cybersecurity incident should lead to strengthening of

systems for protecting patient data. Once the preceding steps are complete, the task of the person responsible for cybersecurity is to prepare a summary report for the hospital administration, including conclusions and recommendations for preventing similar incidents in the future. This usually means working through these six steps again. The role of lawyers Developing and implementing provisions protecting against cyber attacks is a process requiring the involvement of the IT specialists as well as organisational and legal functions of hospitals and hospital networks in Poland. Systems for securing specific healthcare institutions should be included within the nationwide security systems currently being created under EU Directive 2016/1148 concerning measures for a high common level of security of network and information systems across the EU (known as the NIS or Cybersecurity directive). The NIS Directive is intended to create legal and institutional frameworks for cybersecurity and to require the EU member states to develop national cybersecurity strategies, identify operators of critical infrastructure, including hospitals, and build national systems for responding to cyberattacks based on computer security incident response teams (CSIRT). The challenges in ensuring cybersecurity also require changes in the working methods of lawyers. The task requires a formation of interdisciplinary and often multi-jurisdictional rapidresponse teams including lawyers trained in regulatory issues, data protection, and criminal law, who are capable of quickly confronting data releases and minimising the negative consequences of cyberattacks. Today, lawyers may begin to pattern their work on the methods used by CSIRTs.


Events AmCham in Warsaw

In the Carnival mood

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n January AmCham and the Westin Warsaw Hotel held a networking event— the Carnival Business Mixer. Lucky winners of the raffle took home prizes while all other participants enjoyed great food and drink.

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1. Marzena Drela, AmCham; Michael Hopf, the Westin Warsaw hotel. 2. The mixer in progress. 3. Grzegorz Puchawski; Agata Tudek, Bryce Engelbrecht, IQOR. 4. HSH Prince Michael von und zu Liechtenstein ; Joanna Bensz, AmCham Vice-Chair (CH2M Polska); Marzena Drela. 5. Magdalena Pavlak-Chiaradia, AmCham Board Member (ERM Polska); Beata Bednarska, CIMA. 6. Dorota Serafin, AmCham; Karolina Olearczyk, Tomasz Paciorek, MoneyGram International. 7. Karolina Szubert; Jan Pilewski, MSL Group; Anita Kowalska, AmCham. 8. Adam Szepczyński, Super Segway; Jacek Misiejuk, EnerNOC. 9. Anita Kowalska; Michael Hopf. 10. Łukasz Leśniewski, PAIiIZ; Robert Kruszyna, AmCham; Marcin Boroń, PAIiIZ. 11. The Westin Warsaw hotel provided excellent food and drink.

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Global prospects and risks

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aweł Borys, president of the Polish Development Fund, and Carlos Piñerúa, World Bank country manager for Poland and the Baltic States, were the speakers at the February Monthly Meeting. They discussed the current economic situation in the region of Central and Eastern Europe and what it means to investors. The venue was the InterContinental Warsaw Hotel.

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1. Tony Housh, AmCham Chairman (APCO Worldwide); Paweł Borys, president of the Polish Development Fund; Carlos Piñerúa, World Bank country manager for Poland and the Baltic States. 2. The meeting in progress. 3. Paweł Borys; Daniel Bienias, CBRE. 4. Judith Gliniecki; Dorota Dabrowski, AmCham Executive Director. 5. Marten Schoenrock, Alain Bobet. 6. Joe Breen, Janusz Weitzel, Lockheed Martin. 7. Tony Housh; Carlos Piñerúa. 8. Judith Gliniecki; Dorota Dabrowski, Magda Pawlak-Chiaradia, ERM. 9. Marek Sowa; Michał Kobosko, Atlantic Council. 10. Tim Hyland, Travel Express; Pat Burke, Ernst & Young; Dorota Dabrowski, AmCham. 11. Ryszard Kruk, Enterprise Investors; Tony Housh.

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Events American Day in Katowice 

US invstors in Upper Silesia

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mCham 1 joined forces with the PTWP Group and the Chamber of Industry and Commerce in Katowice to hold the American Day in Silesia. The event, which took place in January in the International Congress Center in Katowice, brought together represen- 2 tatives of business community in Upper Silesia, as well as local government and American investors. The oneday conference consisted of two discussion panels and a lot of networking opportunities.

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1. The first panel: Małgorzata Dziembała, Department of Economic Relations, University of Economics in Katowice; Tomasz Zjawiony, the Chamber of Industry and Commerce in Katowice; Roman Rewald, AmCham Board Member (Weil, Gotshal, Manges). 2. Walter Braunohler, US Consul General in Kraków. 3. Tadeusz Donocik, The Chamber of Industry and Commerce in Katowice. 4. Dorota Dabrowski, AmCham Managing Director. 5. Wojciech Kuśpik, The PTWP Group. 6. Bogumił Sobola, Deputy Mayor of Katowice. 7. Marzena Drela, AmCham Deputy Director; Wojciech Kuśpik; Tadeusz Dobnocik. 8. The second panel: Joanna Bensz, AmCham Vice Chair; Grzegorz Dobranowski, IBM Poland and the Baltics; Jerzy Kozicz, CMC Poland; Marcin Nowak, Capgemini Eastern Europe; Paweł Wideł, General Motors; Jacek Ziarno, Nowy Przemysł. 9. The audience of the second discussion panel. 10. Jacek Ziarno. 11. Grzegorz Dobranowski. 12. Joanna Bensz. 13. Paweł Wideł. 14. Marcin Nowak. 15. Jerzy Kozicz. 42

AMERICAN INVESTOR SPRING 2017


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Photos courtesy of wnp.pl

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Events AmCham in Gdańsk  

Smart and disruptive

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he unpredictable nature of networks connecting smart phones and other "smart" devices was on the agenda of a conference held in February by Flex, a technology company, in cooperation with AmCham Gdańsk.

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Main Sponsor 1. The conference in progress. 2. Tommaso Borghi, Flex. 3. Konrad Napieralski, Cisco Systems. 4. Gabriella Schittek, ICANN. 5. Michał Furmankiewicz, Microsoft Polska. 6. Sebastian Sokół, RNT. 7. Stanisław Motylski, Flex. 8. Paweł Maziarz, Sevenet. 9. Michał Skorupowski, Pivotal. 10. Time to rub shoulders with tech people. 11. Stanisław Motylski, Flex. 12. Szymon Niemczura, Kontakt.io. 44

AMERICAN INVESTOR SPRING 2017


AmCham in Kraków  

The Feast of Saint Patrick

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n March, AmCham 1 in Kraków, together with the Irish Polish Chamber of Commerce, took part in the celebration of St. Patrick's Day. The event was organized by Vistra Corporate Services Poland. The venue was the SomePlace Else bar at the Sheraton Grand Kraków.

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1. Marzena Drela, AmCham Deputy Director. 2. The opening in progress. 3. Kenny Morgan, the Irish Polish Chamber of Commerce (Vistra Corporate Services Poland). 4. James Kilcourse, Second Secretary & Consul, the Embassy of Ireland in Poland. 5. The raffle in progress. 6. Edyta Hajduk, Katarzyna Heród, Express Relocation. 7. Honorata Ścisłowicz-Skraba, EY; Anita Kowalska, Marzena Drela, AmCham. 8. Philip Impink, Can Pack; Honorata Ścisłowicz-Skraba. 9. Iwona Matyska, Natalia Głogowska-Dej; Vistra Corporate Services Poland, Marzena Drela. 10. Angela Saliba, Sheraton Kraków Hotel; Marzena Drela. 11. Derek Coyle, Brown Brothers Harriman; Przemek Boryczka, KPMG. 12. Sławomir Kumka, IBM ; Rafał Sękowski, CBRE.

SPRING 2017 AMERICAN INVESTOR

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Events AmCham in Warsaw  

Following the money

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n March, AmCham held its Monthly Meeting at the Ministry of Development, jointly with the International Group of Chambers of Commerce (IGCC). The event was devoted to the presentation of a report on the impact of foreign investment on the Polish economy, compiled by Polityka Insight, a market intelligence unit of the Polityka weekly.

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1. The discussion panel: Adam Czerniak, chief economist, Polityka Insight; Peter Baudrexl, chairman, the Polish-German Chamber of Industry and Commerce; Francois Colombie, member of the supervisory board, the French-Polish Chamber of Commerce; Antoni F. Reczek, Chairman, the British-Polish Chamber of Commerce; Iwona Chojnowska-Haponik, Foreign Investment Department Director, the Polish Agency for Investment and Trade; Tony Housh, Chairman, the American Chamber of Commerce in Poland (APCO Worldwide). 2. The meeting in progress. 3. Tony Housh. 4. Adam Czerniak. 5. Konrad Marciniuk, Miller Canfield; Jakub Faryś, the Polish Automotive Association; Magda Pavlak-Chiaradia; ERM Polska; Paweł Wideł, Genaral Motors; Bartek Morzycki, 3M. 6. Marta Kokoszko, Google; Marzena Drela, AmCham Deputy Director; Iwona Chojnowska-Haponik. 7. Prof. Paweł Buszman, American Heart of Poland; Tony Housh; Frank DeParis, US Embassy in Warsaw; Prof. Stefan Kiesz, American Heart of Poland. 8. Anna Wicha, Adecco; Marzena Drela, Marta Pawlak, AmCham. 9. Magda Pavlak-Charadia; Marek Szydłowski, TVN. 10. Tony Housh; Agnieszka Kosowska, Roche Polska. 46

AMERICAN INVESTOR SPRING 2017


AmCham in Wrocław  

Economic diplomacy at work

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n March, AmCham member companies active in the region of Lower Silesia held a meeting with Deputy Chief of Mission at the US Embassy in Poland, John Law, to discuss best cooperation practices between American businesses and the embassy.

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1. Anthony Crawford, 3M; Jody Law; John Law, Deputy Chief of Mission, US Embassy in Poland. 2. The meeting is about to begin. 3. Sławomir Kiedos, Mphasis; Monika Ciesielska-Mróz, AmCham Wrocław Director (PM Group); Jacek Kudrzycki, PM Group; Agnieszka Schubert, BAMA Europa. 4. Marek Guzik, US Consulate General in Kraków. 5. Jody Law. 6. Tom Zia, US Consulate General in Kraków. 7. Marek Guzik, Monika Ciesielska-Mróz. 8. John Law. 9. Jacek Kudrzycki, Agnieszka Schubert. 10. Tom Zia; Sławomir Kiedos. 11. Agnieszka Schubert; Anthony Crawford.

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Events AmCham in Warsaw  

Celebrating springtime

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arsaw's Capitol Theater was the venue of the AmCham Business Mixer in March. The event was sponsored by United Business Development, with supporting sponsors Mary Kay, FLP and Estee Lauder.

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1. The mixer in progress. 2. Peter Strupp, United Business Development. 3. Marzena Drela; AmCham Deputy Director; Beata Bednarska, CIMA; Joanna Rapacka, Integral Solutions; Tim Hyland, FCM Travel Express. 4. Dorota Dabrowski, AmCham Managing Director; Pamela Gmiter, Staffer Hospitality. 5. Róża Pniewska, Iuliia Ganiieva, CEE Consulting Group. 6. Jolanta Jaworska, IBM; Agnieszka Jankowska, GE; Roman Rewald, AmCham Board Member (Weil, Gotshal & Manges). 7. Wojciech Stachelek, M+W Central Europe; Barbara Pocialik, AmCham. 8. Robert Kruszyna; Dorota Dabrowski; Anita Kowalska; Marzena Drela, AmCham. 9. GianClaudio Licari, Lionbridge; Dorota Serafin, AmCham. 10. Alex Remez; Dorota Dabrowski; André Chiaradia. 11. Klaudia Mironowicz; Zbigniew Łobodzki; Dariusz Żyłka; Snadra Samson-Muszyńska, UBD. 12. Tony Housh, AmCham Chairman (APCO Worldwide); Dorota Dabrowski; Stanley Prusiński; Joseph Prusiński. 48

AMERICAN INVESTOR SPRING 2017

Main Sponsor


AmCham in Gdańsk  

Economy and FDI

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he Emigration Museum in Gdynia was the venue of an AmCham conference on the role of foreign direct investment in the Polish economy. The panelists represented some of foreign investors in Poland: Flex, International Paper, Jeppesen, Thomson Reuters, and Weyerhaeuser.

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1. The panelists: Tomasz Włodarczak, Weyerhaeuser, International Paper; Rafał Stepnowski, Jeppesen; Łukasz Lipiński, Polityka Insight; Stanisław Motylski, Flex; Agata Witczak, Thomson Reuters; Aneta Muskała, International Paper. 2. Dorota Dabrowski, AmCham Managing Director; Katarzyna Gruszecka-Spychała, Gdynia Cityhall. 3. Anna Łuszczak, Gdańsk Economic Development Agency; Marcin Piątkowski, Torus. 4. Małgorzata Szeler, HR Solutions Group; Anna Gast, mBank. 5. Łukasz Lipiński; Dorota Serafin, AmCham; Sebastian Tyrakowski, Emigration Museum. 6. The tour of the exhibition. 7. Joanna Bojarska-Buchcic, AmCham Gdańsk Director (HR Solutions Group); Joanna Staniszewska, you'll; Anna Sobolewska, Flex. 8. Anna Gast, mBank; Grzegorz Buchcic, Gdańsk Transport Company; Joanna Bojarska-Buchcic. 9. Another tour of the museum in progress. 10. Sebastian Tyrakowski; Łukasz Lipiński; Dorota Serafin, AmCham; Joanna Staniszewska; Agnieszka Fedor, Dentons. 11. Aneta Muskała; Elwira Koszewska, Winncom Technologies; Dorota Dabrowski; Stanisław Motylski.

Supporting Sponsor

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Events AmCham in Wrocław

Discussing economic links

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n March, Charles R. Ranado, Senior Commercial Officer at the US Embassy, met with AmCham members in Wrocław, to share his perspectives on business and trade that link Poland and the US.

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1. Charles R. Ranado, Senior Commercial Officer; US Embassy. 2. Fabio Scaltritti, Whirlpool Polska; Antonello Galasso, GLS Global LCC. 3. Zygmunt Łopalewski, Whirlpool Polska. 4. Antonello Galasso; Rafał Kondracki, HS Wrocław, UTS Aerospace Systems. 5. Bartłomiej Morzycki, 3M Poland; Bartosz Hawro, Agnieszka Klimek, Spring Poland; Sławomir Kiedos, Mphasis. 6. Zygmunt Łopalewski; Monika Ciesielska-Mróz, AmCham Wrocław Director (PM Group); Fabio Scaltritti. 7. Chrales R. Ranado; Sławomir Kiedos. 8. Bartłomiej Morzycki; Monika Ciesielska-Mróz; Rafał Kondracki. 9. Agnieszka Klimek; Paweł Jarosz, CH Robinson Polska. 10. Charles R. Ranado; Monika Ciesielska-Mróz. 50

AMERICAN INVESTOR SPRING 2017


AmCham in Warsaw

The connectd world of investment

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he report on the impact of foreign direct investment, compiled by Polityka Insight for 14 international chambers of commerce in Poland, was discussed was discussed at a conference held in April. AmCham member companies represented at teh conference included Lockheed Martin International and 3M Poland. The moderator was Adam Czerniak, Polityka Insight chief economist.

1. Adam Czenniak, Polityka Insight chief economist, opens the conference. 2. Masami Fujimoto; Sebastian Arana, 3M Poland; Joanna Bensz, AmCham Vice Chair (Lockheed Martin International); Adam Czerniak; Tony Housh, AmCham Chairman (APRO Worldwide); Daniel Sanchez.

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Events AmCham in Warsaw

Of taxes and investor incentives

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aweł Gruza, Deputy Minister of Finance, was the speaker at the AmCham Monthly Meeting in April, which attracted over 100 participants. The venue was the Warsaw's InterContinental Hotel.

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1. The meeting in progress. 2. Rick Lada, AmCham Vice Chairman; Paweł Gruza, undersecretary of state, Ministry of Finance. 3. Karol Poznański, MSD Polska. 4. Joanna Rapacka, Integral Solutions; Dorota Dabrowski, AmCham Managing Director. 5. Tony Housh, AmCham Chairman (APCO Worldwide); Marten Schoenrock, InterContinental Hotel. 6. Adam Soska, PwC Polska; Cezary Przygodzki, Dentons; Marcin Matyka, Norton Rose; Radosław Szczęch, EY Polska. 7. Radosław Stasiiuk, ADM Direct; Marek Szydłowski, TVN S.A. 8. Tony Housh; Paweł Gruza. 52

AMERICAN INVESTOR SPRING 2017


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