In Eastern Poland, the aerospace industry has over 100 years of tradition and generates over 90% of Polish aerospace industry output. In this part of Poland, the industry can benefit from excellent scientific and training facilities. What fosters investments is the strategic position of Poland on the main transportation routes as well as the business and tax incentives.
Aerospace Industry in Poland
The Polish aerospace industry dates back to the pre-World War I period. In 1910, the first Polish aircraft factory was founded. In the interwar period such cities as Lublin, Biała Podlaska and Mielec had their own Air Force bases. What is more, The School of Air Force NCOs (Dęblin, Poland) was established and Polish Airlines came into existance. Our pilots on the planes of Polish construction succeeded on an international level. However, the Second World War completely destroyed Polish aerospace industry. After the WW II had ended, it was created anew and aimed at the production of helicopters, gliders and planes for private, military, agricultural and sports purposes.
Size and Structure of Aerospace Industry
The years 2003-2008, have witnessed a substantial increase in the sector’s turnover. Mostly, we produce machine elements and components, not aircrafts. The great majority of the production output (90%) is sold to the giant foreign enterprises. However, a prolonged crisis can threaten the development of the sector. The main client of Polish aircraft factories is the Polish government, which buys planes, helicopters and replacements for the aircrafts that are used in the army, police, border guard and air ambulance service. New and small segment of the national receiver market could be constituted by private business companies that offer air services, e.g. passenger transport by small planes.
Aerospace Industry Among the Most Innovative
Aerospace industry is placed among the most innovative branches in the global economy. In Poland, it closely cooperates with universities and scientific research centers. A good example to illustrate this cooperation is the Aviation Valley Project, which is cofinanced by the European Union. The partnership between aviation companies and local universities has a stable and long-term character. It encompasses about 10 local universities, which not only provide scientific support but also aviation personnel training. There are also three vocational schools that specialise in education programmes in the field of aerospace industry and aviation.
Major Companies and Foreign Investors
After the process of ownership transformation, the aerospace sector is divided into three parts (private companies, public companies and foreign investments) and its facilities are mainly located in the south-east of Poland. The most prosperous of the factories operate under the supervision of foreign investors and are located in Rzeszów, Krosno, Swidnik and Mielec. A separate and distinct position is occupied by the aviation clusters such as the Aviation Valley, which caters for the transformation of the southeastern region of Poland into a leading centre of the aviation industry. It’s goal is to supply the most demanding clients with a wide range of products and services. Primarily, the cluster puts emphasis on a cost-effective supply chain and the growth of scientific research. The entrepreneurial initiatives within the aerospace sector and the group of associated companies are being reinforced by such organizations as Center for Advanced Technologies (Rzeszów), Aircraft Owners and Pilots Association „AOPA Poland”, “AVIA – SPLot”, among others.