Highway Delegation’s Visit to Poland Achieves a Success

—— Exploring Polish Highway Market with Henan Highway Development and Xian Haixin

A delegation of CIIC, Henan Highway Development Ltd and Xian Haixin Technology Investment paid a fifteen-day visit to the highway market in Poland from July 22 to Aug. 7, 2008. Achievements were obtained in terms of policies, project information, participation mode and means and partners, by meeting with ambassadors of Chinese Embassy in Poland, officials of Polish Ministry of Communications and Polish highway enterprises. The delegation believed that Poland was receiving the quality period of time for establishing highways and a historic opportunity for China to go out comes.

This visit was to understand the need of Polish highway market and the possibility and means of China entering the market. Meanwhile, the delegation held more than 20 meetings with ambassadors and economic counselors of Chinese Embassy in Poland, Bureau Chief of Polish Information Investment Bureau, officials in charge of Far East’s issues, Vice Minister of Ministry of Communications, Bureau Chief of National Road General Bureau, Vice Minister of Ministry of Infrastructure, the former Minister of Ministry of Construction, Silesia’s governors, speakers of legislate bodies and bureau chiefs, highway contractors, agency companies, consulting companies respectively, and investigated more than 1000 kilometers of the national highway and high-speed roads in Warsaw, Krakow, and other cities, visited one toll station and at least three building site.

After joining the European Union, Poland received financial assistance for more than EUR 67 billion to build infrastructure, such as highways as to promote cooperative development among regions. Meanwhile, Poland and Ukraine will undertake the European Cup in the year of 2012. The Polish government plans to accomplish the establishment of 1500 kilometers of highways and the tide of establishing highways rises.
The building force of Poland cannot finish such a great task, that foreign help is needed. Highway companies of the European Union counties, such as Germany and Spain purchased shareholding of most construction companies in Poland and took the preemptive opportunities. Meanwhile, more than 1,000,000 Polish workers to Western Europe intensified labor shortage. Poland is now modifying the bill to introduce foreign labor, simplifying the approval procedure and extending the permission term. The bill is expected to be passed in September or October of this year. The Polish government intends to introduce labor force from China, Ukraine and Vietnam.
In response to Chinese government’s suggestion that enterprises participate in international competition and with the support and guide of the Europe Department of Ministry of Business, the Europe Department of Ministry of Foreign Affairs, National Industry and Business Association, CIIC made a market survey in Poland and Romania recently joining the European Union, and held meetings with leaders of two governments and associated officials. Two governments indicated that they welcomed Chinese participation in national infrastructure.

Vice President, Minister of Ministry of Construction, Minister of Ministry of Communications and Bureau Chief of Highway General Bureau of Poland visited China and probed into cooperation and promotion system for China to participate in establishment of Polish highways, railways and houses. In September, 2007, Minister of Ministry of Communications and Bureau Chief of National Highway Bureau visited CIIC and signed an agreement on establishing cooperatively Polish highways. CIIC invited leaders of Henan Highway Development Ltd and Xian Xinghai Technology Holding Company Ltd to participate in the contract-signing ceremony. Afterwards, chairmen of board of three parties signed the cooperation agreement on developing and undertaking the Polish highway project, in order to carry out strategies of Going Out. Under the condition that the national highway market reached a saturation point, three parties together explored the highway and housing market in Poland and other countries recently joining the Europe Union to seek for new profit-growing point.
During this visit, the delegation understood Polish highway-building tasks and timetable, difficulties and challenges faced when accomplishing tasks, and the possibility for China to enter the Polish highway market. The delegation also understood that the most feasible way for China to participate in projects and enter the market was to be a contractor first, and then a general contractor after accumulating experiences and performances. The delegation made clear construction standards adopted by Polish highways and contract term categories, grasped Polish highway’s construction procedure and associated provisions, and was aware that the way for China to enter Polish construction market was to purchase Polish highway companies’ shareholding. The delegation negotiated with many professional consulting companies to find out the effective way to avoid overseas investment risks. The quality time for China to enter the Polish market comes without any delay. At the moment, the three parties are constituting the next-step work and implementation plan.