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Thursday, 5 October 2017

Polish-Bulgarian Economic Forum in Warsaw

  |   Polish-Bulgarian Economic Forum in Warsaw Polish-Bulgarian Economic Forum in Warsaw Polish-Bulgarian Economic Forum in Warsaw Polish-Bulgarian Economic Forum in Warsaw Polish-Bulgarian Economic Forum in Warsaw Polish-Bulgarian Economic Forum in Warsaw

Investment, infrastructure limitations in Central and Eastern Europe and the importance of trust in business dominated Thursday's joint statement by Polish and Bulgarian presidents Andrzej Duda and Rumen Radev at the close of a Polish-Bulgarian Economic Forum in Warsaw.


President Duda stressed that the foreign expansion of Polish enterprises was a priority issue in his foreign policy, and pointed to broad prospects for closer cooperation between Poland and Bulgaria, especially in investment, infrastructure projects and innovation. He remarked, however, that this would require "deep change", especially as far as the elimination of transport hindrances was concerned. See also: Three Seas' goals in line with EU's growth concept


"If we want to raise our economic relations to a level answering our true economic potential, and especially our ambitions, we must carry through some deep changes", Andrzej Duda said, observing that this mainly entailed increased investment in roadbuilding, railways and air transport. In this context, he stressed that transport problems were a common challenge for all countries embraced by the Polish-Croatian Three Seas Initiative involving raised cooperation between Central-East European countries in the Baltic, Adriatic and Black Sea regions.


Participants in the project include Austria, Bulgaria, Croatia, the Czech Republic, Estonia, Hungary, Latvia, Lithuania, Poland, Romania, Slovakia and Slovenia.


President Duda continued that one necessary area for cooperation was at the level of specialist companies.

"I am convinced that the Polish economy's innovation increases the competitiveness of Polish companies, and that Polish products created by high-technology firms, including start-ups, will gain recognition on the Bulgarian market", he said.


Andrzej Duda noted that in 2016 Bulgaria's economy booked its first budget surplus since 2008 and a 3.5-percent growth rate, with unemployment down to 7 percent. He also mentioned the fast rise in Bulgarian exports to Poland, and reminded that in 2016 Polish-Bulgarian trade was 10 percent up on the previous year, topping EUR 1.5 billion.


Radev appealed to Polish entrepreneurs to invest in Bulgaria and to cooperate with local companies. He stressed that his country had achieved economic stability in recent years and pointed out that owing to its location, Bulgaria was not only a gate to European markets, but also a door to Asian and African ones.


He also praised the Polish-Bulgarian Economic Forum, and informed that it had led to signing business contracts worth EUR 35 million. In the Bulgarian president's opinion, this was "a further step on the path towards our cooperation". (PAP)

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