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Setting up a business in Poland

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Looking forward to set up a business in Poland? Here are some guidelines on relating procedures and conditions.

As the European Union's 6th economic powerhouse, Poland has been attracting many expatriates, especially foreign investors, over the years. Indeed, the country is deemed to be a haven for investment, both from Europe and the rest of the world. You are thus likely to find several multinational companies across the country.

Located in the heart of Europe, Poland is a real gateway towards Germany, Czech Republic, Slovakia, Lithuania, Ukraine, Belarus and Russia. So if you intend to set up a business there, you will enjoy a great opening towards a vast business-friendly environment. But make sure to inquire on relating formalities beforehand as specific conditions may apply.

Types of companies

There are four types of companies in Poland and there is no limit regarding the number of partners and associates involved.

The Spolka ackjna, for instance, is a kind of Limited Company which requires a minimum capital of 10 new zloty. 25% of this capital will be released upon registration. Moreover, partners' liabilities are limited to the amount contributed.

The Sploka zoograniczona odpowiedzialnoscia, also known as ZOO, is a Limited Liability Company requiring a minimum capital of 0.5 new zloty. Like in the case of the Limited Company, each partner's liability is limited to the amount contributed.

The Spolka jawna (RP) is a General partnership which does not involve any minimum capital. Moreover, each partner's liability is limited to the amount of contribution.

Finally, the Spolka komandytowa, which is a limited liability partnership, does not require a minimum capital. Each associate's liabilities are limited, but general partners are entitled to unlimited liabilities.

Procedures

In general, setting up a business in Poland can take up to more than a month, which is quite high compared to other East-European countries.

First of all, you are required to apply for your company's registration at the Pole Registry of Commerce. Fees of some 100 new zloty apply. You will have to define your company's activities into one or different categories. Once your application has been validated, you will be notified via a confirmation letter.

Thereafter, your company's constitution has to be notarized before the Krajowy Rejestr Sadowy, that is the National Court Register, and at the nearest Territorial Commercial Court. Your notary can make necessary arrangements for you, but additional fees of some 10,000 new zloty will apply besides taxes and other costs. The following documents will also be required:

  • a written registration application
  • the company's constitution and statutes
  • directors' signatures
  • a signed declaration by all members, stating that the initial capital has been totally released, along with a conformation letter issued by a bank or investment institution.

Note that procedures can take up to four weeks.

Thereafter, you are required to apply for REGON registration at the Glowny Urzad Statystyczny, which is the National Statistics Agency. It is an essential step before you are allowed to open a bank account with a commercial bank where you will deposit the company's capital. Other documents such as the directors' and partners' details, etc, may also be requested.

Once all these steps have been accomplished, you will have to register the company at the National Tax Office. On applying for a tax registration number, you will receive a Value Added Tax (VAT) number. You will then have to request for a ZUS, that is a matriculation number, from the Social Security.

Support

The Pole government has set up the Polish Information and Foreign Investment Agency so as to provide assistance and support to foreigners wishing to set up their business in the country. Feel free to contact this agency if you need any information or help in relating procedures.

 Useful links:

National Court Register ems.ms.gov.pl
National Statistics Agency stat.gov.pl
Polish Information and Foreign Investment Agency www.paiz.gov.pl

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See also

Being the second biggest Pole city, Krakow is a major economic hub, providing many opportunities for expatriates who wish to settle there.
As the most dynamic Pole city, Warsaw is very open towards expatriates looking for new career prospects in Central Europe.
Thanks to its sustainable economy, Poland's labor market has been attracting many expatriates seeking new opportunities over the years.
Poland hosts many local, national and multinational companies which are rather open towards expatriates looking for internship opportunities.
Poland hosts several nationals and international banks where foreigners are allowed to open a bank account without any difficulty.

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