In September 2020, the Poland. Business Harbour (PBH) Program was launched - a comprehensive package that makes it easier for IT specialists, start-ups, and small, medium and large companies to easily relocate to the territory of the Republic of Poland. Today, the program has been extended to companies from strategic industries from around the world.
This "safe business haven" includes three paths of participation: for individual IT specialists, startups and mature companies - from micro-entrepreneurs to the largest players on the market. The program was created as a response to the situation in Belarus and the need to provide safe shelter and a chance to develop the hitherto dynamically functioning Belarusian IT industry, which, however, is particularly vulnerable to persecution. What is worth emphasizing, is that the program is the only solution of this type both in the history of Poland and in Europe, Which offers support for both enterprises and individuals.
As part of the program, a special type of visa has been created, which is the only one that allows the holder to work without the need to obtain a permit, it also allows the holder to set up a business and allows them to take their immediate family with them. More than 55,000 such visas have already been issued.
Polish economic diplomacy is based on two pillars – firstly supporting the foreign expansion of Polish companies, goods and services, secondly attracting foreign investors to Poland. The program Poland. Business Harbour fits perfectly into the goals, as it fosters both the development of innovation in our economy and the creation of jobs. - Paweł Jabłoński, Undersecretary of State of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs.
In addition to visa facilitation, all participants of the program can count on support in contacts with accelerators, local governments or Special Economic Zones, which have actively participated in the preparation of the offer for the relocated people and their families. One the elements of the package also include support in the form of connecting entrepreneurs with investors and grants for R&D activities. Each company is offered support in the business concierge formula as part of the cooperation offered by the Polish Investment and Trade Agency (PAIH).
The program is organized by: GovTech Center in the Chancellery of the Prime Minister, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, the Ministry of Development and Technology, the Polish Investment and Trade Agency and the Polish Agency for Enterprise Development.
Poland Business Harbour open to other countries
Thanks to PAIH, every small, medium and large company can move its business to Polish. Companies can count on a business consierge service, i.e. comprehensive assistance in transferring their business to Poland, which consists of advise and information on running a business in Poland.
Bearing in mind the needs of entrepreneurs implementing large investment projects in the new technologies sector and employing high-class specialists - programmers or engineers, PAIH will support companies in relocating employees from other parts of the world, not just from the list of countries covered by the program.
From now on, there is no list of countries within this path, which means that it is possible to apply for the relocation of employees from around the world.
PBH's extended business path is addressed to companies from strategic industries implementing projects of significant importance for the Polish economy.
During the two years of the Program’s operation, the Polish Investment and Trade Agency has served over 140 companies that have applied for the relocation of almost 49,000 employees, of which about 35,000 (70%) after Russia's aggression against Ukraine. Most of the relocated workers are citizens of Belarus. The total investment value of completed and ongoing investments is almost EUR 180 million.
The companies with which we cooperate repeatedly emphasize that the Poland. Business Harbour program is an excellent tool that facilitates the acquisition of highly qualified employees. Its extension is a response to the needs of companies that are increasingly investing in Poland in the area of new technologies. I'm sure that the extension of the Poland. Business Harbour will attract even more technologically advanced, innovative investments and talented, qualified specialists to our country, who will in turn support our labour market. - Krzysztof Drynda, Chairman of the Polish Investment and Trade Agency.
The Poland. Business Harbour program for individuals remains unchanged
A special PBH visa can be obtained by anyone who is recommended by one of the partner companies of the program, the list of which is posted on the gov.pl/pbh. Today there are already over 300 of them, but the list remains open and available on the program's website.
Another point of the Poland Business Harbour program for companies is a confirmation of the fact that we conduct a constant dialogue with beneficiaries and in this way we are able to adapt the program to changing needs. Thanks to this, Polish companies can constantly develop, thus strengthening the domestic economy. We invite all interested parties to join the program. - Justyna Orłowska, the Prime Minister’s plenipotentiary for GovTech.
A central information point for entities interested in using or joining the Program is a special website, available at gov.pl/pbh in eight language versions (Polish, English, Ukrainian, Russian, Belarus, Armenian, Georgian and Rumanian).