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Japanese investments in Poland

One of the great advantages for business from Japan is Poland’s very good location. But, what is equally important, especially for advanced Japanese technologies, is that the Japanese also appreciate the high quality of IT services provided by Polish specialists.

Smiling Japanese businessman

Japan – general characteristics

Japan is an island nation located in the western Pacific Ocean and the eastern coast of Asia. The area of the country is 377 975 km2. The four main islands of Hokkaido, Honshu, Shikoku, Kyushu, make up 97% of Japan’s land area.

According to The World Bank, the population in 2022 was nearly 125,125 million inhabitants, which gives a density of about 330 people per km2.

Japan’s GDP in 2022 was $4.23 trillion and its GDP per capita was over $33,800. Japan’s economy is the 3rd largest economy in the world.

The capital of the country, Tokyo, is the largest city in the world, with a population of about 37.5 million.

Japan is a stable, wealthy country of rich and very well-educated people. The country’s economy is characterized by a high level of innovation and technological advancement. A characteristic feature of highly developed countries, among which Japan is the leader, are well-developed services, which dominate its economy. But the driving force behind the country’s prosperity  is its modern industrial production. The following sectors are dominant: automotive, electronics, machinery, pharmaceuticals and chemicals. Strategic industries such as petrochemicals and bio-based industries are also of great importance.

The Economic Partnership Agreement (EPA) is in place between the European Union and Japan, which gradually removes trade barriers and helps European companies compete in the market

Polish goods on the Japanese market

Polish export industries that are already present on the Japanese market are agri-food products and animal products (Japan was the second largest meat importer in the world in 2019). Poland’s exports of agri-food products  to Japan alone in 2020 amounted to EUR 66.6 million.

Other well-known and valued Polish products on the Japanese market include cosmetics, ceramics, Polish handicrafts, textiles and leather goods, furniture and home furnishings, computer games, software and IT services, medical devices and devices, motor boats and yachts.

In the last few years, Polish, goose and duck down and feathers have enjoyed great popularity and  Japanese manufacturers are very eager to use  this for the production of quilts and jackets.

The value of export of  Polish goods in 2021 amounted to EUR 734.01 million.

Japanese investments in Poland

According to NBP data for 2022, Japan was the third largest investor in our country among countries outside the European Union. It was surpassed only by the United States and South Korea. There were more than 350 Japanese companies registered in Poland, of which over 100 were involved in the production of goods.

The Japanese have invested in the automotive industry in Poland -Toyota in Wałbrzych and Jelcz, where they produce internal combustion engines and drives for hybrid vehicles. The total value of Toyota’s investment has been PLN 6 billion and  they have created over 3,000 jobs.

For over 20 years,  the Bridgestone Corporation, a manufacturer of tires and rubber products, has been present on the Polish market. Its factory in Poznań is their most modern factory .

The Japanese chemical industry and Sumika, which manufactures polypropylene-based compounds in Plewiska near Poznań, have also invested in the automotive supply chain.

In Ksawerów near Łódź, Nippon Seiki’s third European factory has been operating since 2019. It is the market leader in high-end head-up displays for mid-range and premium cars.

This economic zone was also chosen by the Japanese Daikin Europe N.V., which in 2022 announced the start of  construction of a heat pump factory. The investment is worth approximately EUR 300 million and is one of the largest in recent years in our country. Daikin Europe N.V. will thus create 3,000 new jobs. The plant is expected to start production in July 2024.

Since 2007, the Japanese tobacco company JTI has been present on the Polish market, employing about 3,000 people. Two-thirds of them work in factories in Stary Gostków near Łódź, where cigarettes, sticks for heated tobacco, smoking tobacco and other tobacco products are produced. It is the largest tobacco factory in the world. JTI has invested approximately USD 1.3 billion in Poland over the past several years. In 2019, it opened a Global Business Services Centre (JTI GBS) in Warsaw, serving JTI worldwide in the areas of finance, legal affairs, human resources management, marketing, sales and their global supply chain.

The Japanese have also invested in the brewing industry. They are currently the largest producers of beer in our country since the Asahi group became the owners of the Polish Kompania Piwowarska in 2017, which owns breweries in Poznań, Tychy and Białystok.

The latest investment of capital from Japan is  by the Dydo Group, which has already signed an agreement with the private equity fund Avallon, under which it will take over the producer of juices and water – Wosana from Andrychów in the Małopolski Voivodeship. According to the Japanese group, the value of the investment is to amount to EUR 45.5 million.

In total, the Japanese have already created about 50,000 jobs by investing in Poland.

Source: Export Intelligence, PAIH

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