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Investors rush to invest before changes in a state aid

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Andrzej Półgrabski, Bydgoszcz Industrial and Technological Park
Andrzej Półgrabski, Bydgoszcz Industrial and Technological Park

Andrzej Półgrabski, the President of the Management Board Bydgoszcz Industrial and Technological Park, talks with Marta Śniegocka.

Bydgoszcz Industrial and Technological Park won in the category of Top Technology Park of the Year 2013 in the FDI Poland Investors Awards. How must a technology park distinguish itself to be considered the best?

Candidates were assessed in several ways, inter alia, they needed to demonstrate the creation of new investments or the development of existing ones, and the level of employment and growth in the last three years was also taken into account. In our case, the statistics are as follows:

It is worth noting that these figures are constantly increasing.

In what way can this type of award translate into more interest among investors in BPPT?

This award will certainly help us in discussions with potential investors, especially those from abroad. The award was given by an independent jury consisting of eminent persons known in the circles of foreign investors, for example, representatives of foreign chambers of commerce and embassies. The number of companies with foreign capital present in BPPT is increasing year by year, and we hope that this award will create even more interest in Bydgoszcz Industrial and Technological Park among foreign investors.

In connection with prolonging the term of the SEZ, do you plan to expand the sub-Pomeranian SEZ in BPPT? In connection with this decision, will you see increased interest among investors?

As you know, in addition to lengthening the term of the SEZ, from July 2014 new conditions will come into effect, under which permission will be granted to operate in SEZs, and the map of state aid will be changed. In our voivodeship it is to be reduced from 50% to 35%. The whole of the planned changes mean that at the prsent moment, there is actually more interest in areas that already have the status of SEZ. However, the signals that come to us from businesses show that after the changes they will be forced to think twice about the profitability of investing in the areas covered by the SEZ. Investors who were, are, or will be interested in investing in our areas which do not have the status of SEZ, can count on our full support in negotiations with the City of Bydgoszcz and the Pomeranian Special Economic Zone in matters relating to SEZ acquiring more land.

In the past few months, several companies have decided to invest in BPPT, among others, such companies as Metalcynk, Cimat and MMP Neupak. How much land is still available?

This year, several companies started operating in BPPT: Airon Investment, MMP Neupack Polska, GreKa, Mac-Graf, Metalcynk and Metalbark. Cimat and BIMs PLUS have started construction work.
In our current offer we still have about 80 ha for sale or rent, or build-to-suit, that is buildings tailored to the needs of individual investors.

How is the preparation of these areas? Are they fully equipped with services?

These areas are fully equipped. Through the use of EU funds in 2012, we completed a project that consisted of equipping areas with modern infrastructure. Lots have access to electricity, industrial water and drinking water, sanitary and storm sewers, IT and fibre-optic connections, and gas and heat. Newly built roads, pavements and cycle paths provide access for all the companies.

Last year plans were discussed to build an office complex for the BPO sector in the Park. Are there still plans for such an investment?

We still have plans to build an office block in BPPT. Its construction depends on receiving funding from the Regional Operational Programme of Kujawsko – Pomorskie voivodeship. Later this year, there should be a competition for funding for this type of building, and we are taking the first steps to apply for such subsidies.

Why should investors invest precisely in Bydgoszcz and Bydgoszcz Industrial and Technological Park?

Bydgoszcz Industrial and Technological Park ( BPPT ) is great proof that Bydgoszcz is an attractive place to invest - our Park is one of the largest and newest in Poland with investment areas covering nearly 280 ha. BPPT area is completely covered by the local development plan , under which operates the Pomeranian Special Economic Zone . At the moment there are more than 50 companies employing more than 1,300 people. BPPT offers direct access to the national road no. 10, access to the airport and river port, and, above all, access to the metropolitan labor market with a total population of 850 thousand people. BPPT staff provide support in the implementation of administrative procedures, and selling land without the time-consuming tendering process. BPPT staff deal with issues relating to surveying divisions which allows the specification of the shape and size of land for the investor. BPPT also carries out build-to -suit projects, building construction tailored to individual needs. It is worth mentioning that the power of Bydgoszcz, and also a big advantage for BPPT, is the well- educated, dynamic, enterprising and industrious population.

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