Standard & Poor's rates the city of
Krakow BBB+. Krakow is
Poland’s fourth biggest manufacturing center, with steel,
tobacco and pharmaceuticals being the key industries. At the
same time the city is second only to the capital Warsaw as
regards the service sector. On top of being the country’s
prime tourist destination it boasts headquarters of 6 banks,
15 major institutions of higher education, and plethora of
consultants, stockbrokers, etc. Krakow is also home to two
of Poland’s three biggest Internet portals and many leading
software firms. Recently the city has become the world's
major outsourcing destination.
Visitors from member-states of the European Union and
NATO do not need visas to enter Poland. Otherwise, when
a country wants Polish citizens to acquire a visa the
general rule is that Poland requires citizens of that
country to secure one for admission to Poland as well.
The EU's nationals may become residents of Krakow
practically right away while other aliens need to apply
for temporary or permanent residency. [See also tips on
employment, transport, communication, currency, paying,
weights & measures, business hours, holidays, dates and
numbers, and local customs].
More tips for business visitors
As a rule expatriates and natives pay the same taxes in Poland. Of
course, there are exceptions and they benefit the former. E.g. the
country has tax treaties with 60-plus nations, including the USA,
which ensure no income is taxed twice and lower taxes apply. Value added
tax (VAT) is included in the price of almost every product and service
you purchase. Excise duty is a ‘sin tax’ of sorts, included alongside
VAT in the price of such products as cigarettes, liquors, motor fuels,
etc. Companies incorporated or headquartered in Poland are subject to
corporate income tax (CIT) of 15 percent.
Personal income tax is paid both by Poland’s citizens and by permanent
More on taxes in Poland
In Poland foreigners can freely buy apartments or plots up to 0.4
hectare (i.e. about an acre) in urban areas. They may also inherit any
property. Otherwise acquisition of real estate
by an alien requires authorization from the Ministry of Internal
Affairs, easily obtainable in most cases. It applies to individuals as
well as companies whenever foreigners hold the controlling interest.
More on Krakow's real estates
In 2005 nineteen Krakow companies ranked among Poland’s
500 biggest corporations, i.e. with sales exceeding US
million a year. Bank Przemyslowo-Handlowy PBK S.A., with
its headquarter in Krakow and branches all around the
country, proved to be the tenth largest Polish business
owing to its annual turnover exceeding US dollars 1.3 billion.
Yet Mittal Poland, former Sendzimir Steelworks,
has remained the biggest employer in the city with over
9,000 on its payroll despite the recent massive
reductions due to restructuring.
More on Krakow corporations
New Town in the Center of Krakow
So-called New Town (‘Nowe Miasto’),
a 200,000-sq-m office-shopping-and-entertainment complex on the 70,000-sq-m site
in downtown Krakow next to the Old Town historic district, is the city’s biggest
development project under construction. Local government earmarked the strategic
area adjoining Krakow’s communication hub with main railroad and bus stations
for its brand-new commercial center.
More on New Town project
costs stay at a third of Germany’s, and the country boasts a sizeable and
fast-expanding internal market, enjoys a healthy GDP growth, and remains a model
of political and economic stability in the region. No wonder foreign investors
flock: from multinationals to fairly small enterprises. If you want to jump the
bandwagon, Krakow appears a particularly good place with some 8.5 million people
living within a radius of 100 km. And the city is situated at Europe’s crucial
crossroads between Germany and Ukraine and between Scandinavia and the south of
More on FDI in Krakow
All companies incorporated in Poland are equal before the law of
the country. And Polish corporations can be owned altogether and run by foreign
shareholders, while full repatriation of capital as well as after-tax profits
and dividend earnings is guaranteed. At the same time Poland's competition law,
the protection of intellectual property, bankruptcy law, etc. are nowadays up to
the Western standards.
on investing in Krakow
Poland's prime tourist attraction and a must-see in Central Europe boasts
vistas, delightful atmosphere, and the best
easily available on foot.
Go to Krakow's Old Town historic district
From designer garb to jewelry, and from antiques to books and CDs–Krakow’s
Old Town historic district,
turned into a pedestrian precinct, teems with stores of all sorts, crammed into
every available space.
More on shopping in Krakow
Krakow has always been Poland’s gourmet Mecca. And the
recent decade brought about a genuine restaurant explosion
all over the city owing to the hectic efforts of aspiring
restaurateurs–native ones as well as immigrants. The Old
Town historic district seems virtually stuffed with
establishments catering to all kinds of diners.
More on Krakow’s restaurants
Krakow General Data:
Basic Krakow info for visitors
nation, geography, climate, wildlife, visitors,
How to move about the city.
Travel to Krakow
Good hotels in Krakow
In the proximity of Krakow
Krakow is Poland's tourist mecca, and also a gateway to
many other must-see sites in the region.