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Chinese investment serves as long-awaited rain in drought for Polish company

Xinhua | Updated: 2017-10-16 13:42

WARSAW - "When Chinese company invested in Poland, we were worried about whether we could keep our jobs," said Malgorzata Bielica who works at Liugong Dressta Machinery in Stalowa Wola, southeast Poland.

Malgorzata and her husband both used to work for HSW, a Polish company preceding Liugong Dressta.

In 2012, when she learned that the company was to be acquired, Malgorzata had some concerns. If she and her husband had lost their jobs, the family would have faced a difficult position with no income.

In February 2012, China Guangxi Liugong invested 170 million zloty ($49 million) and made the acquisition of HSW's civil engineering machinery division. Liugong also gained a 100-percent stake and access to HSW wholly-owned subsidiary company Dressta.

However, not only could the Bielicas continue to work there, but salaries of employees changed for the better. The company's business condition also has taken a turn for the better thanks to the upgrading of production.

Before the acquisition, Dressta was facing a difficult situation. Local media reported that due to fierce competitions from American and German enterprises, its business condition continued to deteriorate, even near bankruptcy.

Michal Kolakowski, adviser to public administration and managing partner of Warsaw Consulting Group said: "Like a long-awaited rain after a prolonged drought, Liugong's investment has saved struggling Dressta."

Five years since the acquisition, Malgorzata's family have had a better life. Three years ago, Malgorzata decided to introduce her just-graduated daughter to join Liugong. When asked about the reason, Malgorzata said:"Liugong is a good employer, and this kind of family and work combination has many advantages, we discuss work even after we get home in the evening."

Malgorzata was not the only one who benefited from Chinese enterprises. According to the data by Liugong Dressta, the company has provided more than 1,200 job opportunities in the region, with a total of more than 230 million zloty ($66 million) of various accumulated taxes and fees contribution to the country between 2012 and 2016.

Along with the development of the Belt and Road Initiative, some Chinese companies chose to increase investment in Poland, creating jobs and promoting local economic growth. Liu Lijuan, business counselor of the Chinese Embassy in Poland, said that China's investment for Poland has provided about 15,000 jobs.

In September, Liugong Dressta opened its first regional headquarters in Warsaw and a new European Parts Distribution Centre (PDC) in Stalowa Wola. According to Hou Yubo, vice-chairman of Liugong Dressta, the new distribution centre covers an area of 3,500 square meters, with an investment of nearly $9.4 million.

Jerzy Kwiecinski, Polish deputy minister of development,said:"We are delighted that such companies as Liugong increasingly choose to relocate their business to Poland."

"Chinese investments in Poland are increasingly technologically advanced, and they help to build a modern knowledge economy in our country,"Kwiecinski said at the opening ceremony of Liugong's regional headquarters in Warsaw.

In the same month, Nuctech Warsaw, owned by Chinese Nuctech, started building a new manufacturing and office facility of 6,000 square meters in Kobylka, near Warsaw. With the total investment of 40 million zloty ($11 million), the facility will produce large-scale security inspection equipment.

Robert Roguski, mayor of the town of Kobylka, said that the investment of Chinese enterprises in Poland increased local taxes and promoted employment, providing more possibilities for cooperation at the local level between the two countries.

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