Botswana Poland Virtual Business Forum (1)The Embassy, in collaboration with the Botswana Investment and Trade Centre (BITC) and the Polish Chamber of Commerce (PCC) on 4 August 2020 organised the first-ever Botswana/Poland Virtual Business Forum, which attracted close to 100 participants from both Poland and Botswana. The Forum was held with the objective to introduce Botswana to Polish businesses interested in expanding into Africa, with the targeted industries being from the Agriculture and Health sector.
Panellists for the Forum included Ambassador Mmasekgoa Masire-Mwamba who gave the keynote address on Botswana/Poland relations; Mr Janusz Wisniewski – Vice President of the Polish Chamber of Commerce; Mr Keletsositse Olebile – CEO, BITC; Ambassador Jan Wielinski – Diplomatic Advisor to the President of the PCC; Mr Dichaba Molobe – Director, Policy Advocacy, Business Botswana; and Ms Danuta Sojka-Andrzejewska – Polish Ministry of Economic Development.

Ambassador Masire-Mwamba provided an overview of Botswana/Polish relations and encouraged Polish participants to partner with Batswana and use Botswana as a regional hub to access the southern African markets and the continent as they consider expansion into the African market.

Mr. Olebile of BITC gave a presentation on available opportunities in Botswana, assuring investors of the availability of his organisation to facilitate their entry into Botswana. Investors were also encouraged to use the BITC one-stop shop for ease of setting up in Botswana.

Ms. Sojka-Andrzejewska highlighted that Poland was one of the fastest growing economies in Europe, and that the Polish business community was focused on foreign expansion to grow their businesses, noting that trade between Poland and Africa was very minimal, accounting to only 1.2% of the Polish trade exchange, with trade between Botswana and Poland being around US$1.45 million in exports and imports from Botswana amounting to only US$24,000.00, making Botswana the 47th largest trading partner in Africa.

Poland is looking to cooperate with Botswana in the sectors of Agricultural machinery, food processing, health, infrastructure development and energy.