There is no shortage of reasons why it is worth opening a business in Poland. Apart from being one of the largest economies in the EU, Poland tempts investors with its strategic location right in the centre of Europe. It is one of the few countries that endured the global financial crisis relatively untouched. These and other factors make more and more investors ask – how do you start a business in Poland?
Is starting a company in Poland easy?
Opening a company in Poland can generate both satisfaction and profit. It also requires knowledge of the corresponding regulations and the registration process. It goes without saying that it is much harder to start a business in Poland when you do not speak Polish – and that may be the biggest obstacle.
This is also why most investors opt to hire native Polish speakers to assist them with the formalities. Using the services of a fluent translator from English to Polish will save you time and money and spare you grey hair. This help is usually not limited merely to the translation services. A Polish citizen can explain the procedures, help narrow down offices which need to be visited and, when necessary, talk to officials in Polish.
Why start a business in Poland?
Before we get to the technicalities of opening a company in Poland, let’s explore a bit more about why it might be a good idea. The most important economic factors include the GDP index at 5.1% (Q3 2018) and the country’s stable economic situation.
In recent years, Poland has managed to push the unemployment rate down to around 5.1%, the lowest in 30 years. Low inflation and being a member of international organisations including the European Union, the OECD, NATO and the WTO, as well as the Schengen Area, make it a country characterised by a high level of trust among worldwide investors.
Foreigners are welcome to start their companies in Poland
The Polish government provides many incentives for both local and foreign investors to open businesses in Poland. Medium and large companies can enjoy Special Economic Zones, which provide entrepreneurs with special privileges including tax exemptions and direct bonuses.
It is important to remember that these privileges are gained under specific conditions – a company needs to employ a certain number of workers, or the investment must be of a certain economic value. Investors will need to check the regulations in place in a specific Special Economic Zone to be sure they can apply.
Which industry sectors offer business opportunities in Poland?
Before deciding what type of company in Poland is appropriate for your needs, it’s worth looking into the country’s most prospective sectors:
- research and development
- automotive and aviation
These are the most rapidly growing; however, Poland’s attractive location provides further prospective opportunities – most notably in transport, import and export.
Types of companies which can be opened in Poland
Once you’ve learned about the incentives for opening a company in Poland, the next step will be deciding on which type of company it will be. The main types of companies in Poland include:
- Partnerships – including registered partnerships, professional partnerships, limited partnerships, limited joint-stock partnerships
- Capital companies – limited liability companies, joint-stock companies
- Sole traders.
Furthermore, foreign companies wanting to operate in Poland can set up branch offices, as well as representative offices. These types of business vehicles offer higher ease of entrance but limited possibilities.
Before deciding which will be the most suitable for your business plan, make sure you check the specifics.
How do you register a company in Poland step-by-step?
Now that you have some idea about what to expect when opening a business in Poland, it’s time to get to the technicalities of actually opening your business. Below is a step-by-step guide to the most necessary matters:
- Find a translator, usually English to Polish and Polish to English
- Find an accounting office to guide you through the regulations and taxes in Poland
- Decide on the most basic aspects:
- Choose your form of income tax
- Consider whether you want to pay PIT contributions monthly or quarterly
- Choose a form of accounting
- Pick the name for your company
- Decide when you will open your company (consult with your Polish accountant)
- Secure the address of your company’s headquarters
- Choose PKD codes (numbers describing the area of your operation for the tax office – look online)
- Submit the CEIDG-1 form
- Register with ZUS
- Input all your current company details to CEIDG (a database with companies in Poland)
How can you make opening a company in Poland easier?
Starting a business in Poland requires quite a lot of effort, even for Polish citizens, as the number of matters which need to be handled can be overwhelming. As mentioned before, two things are crucial for entrepreneurs who wish to start their business adventure in Poland – a Polish accountant and a Polish translator. Without a professional from Poland, it can be difficult to grasp all the individual matters. Good luck!
Contact me if you need to translate your company registration documents.
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