Poland - Country Commercial Guide
Market Challenges

Learn about barriers to market entry and local requirements, i.e., things to be aware of when entering the market for this country.

Last published date: 2022-07-22

The IMF projects Poland’s GDP (purchasing power parity (PPP)) per capita in 2022 to be $41,680. However, that continues to be less than Western EU countries. According to the OECD, Poland’s average household net-adjusted disposable income per capita is $23,675, less than the OECD average of $30,490 a year. There is a considerable gap between the richest and the poorest in Poland; however, income inequality is lower than in most advanced economies (OECD).

Poland’s overall commercial climate is positive.  The country is open to foreign investment as a source of capital, growth, and jobs, and as a vehicle for technology transfer, R&D, and integration into global supply chains. There are some limits on foreign ownership of companies in selected strategic sectors and limits on the acquisition of real estate, especially agricultural and forest land. In March 2018, Poland adopted Sunday Trade Ban legislation, which gradually phased out Sunday retail commerce in Poland. From 2020 onward the law will allow for Sunday shopping only on the two Sundays preceding Christmas, one Sunday before Easter, and the last Sunday of January, April, June, and August of each calendar year. Some investors have expressed concern about Poland’s lack of legal transparency and predictability, noting that new tax laws and policies are sometimes introduced quickly and without broad consultation, and that the oversized role that state-owned firms play in the Polish economy could create obstacles to long-term growth (according to the Minister of State Assets, companies controlled by the state create 15% of GDP).      

There are concerns that increased spending on social benefits and higher defense spending, coupled with a reduction in the retirement age and a tight labor market could constrain GDP growth going forward. Poland’s economy is projected to perform well in the next few years in part because of an anticipated cyclical increase in the use of its EU development funds and continued household spending. Nevertheless, Poland’s economic growth in is expected to be impacted by the Russian war in Ukraine. The slower growth of GDP will be influenced by higher uncertainty, trade disruptions, Polish monetary policy, and rapid inflation, projected to reach an annual rate of 10.8% in 2022 and 9.0% in 2023 (NBP).

Poland is considered to be among the global leaders for doing business. Compared to other countries, Poland ranks favorably when it comes to cross-border trading and credit access and is improving in areas such as enforcing contracts and collecting taxes. Corruption is not a widespread problem in Poland. The country ranks 42nd out of 180 countries on Transparency International’s “Corruption Perception Index.”