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Arabia SaudyjskaAerospace Sector

Support for Investors:
Centre for Strategic Investment
e-mail: invest@paih.gov.pl

Basic facts and figures

  • Sold production: EUR 1.25 bn (2020)
  • Industry share: 0.5% (2020)
  • Number of employees in the sector: 17 900 employees in aerospace manufacturing and 98 400 employees in machinery and equipment manufacturing (Official Statistics Poland data for 2020)
  • Number of companies in the sector: 29 companies (manufacture of air and spacecraft, companies with 49+ employees)
  • Average salary in the sector: 6 257.88 PLN (state average for the industrial sector in 2020: 5 404.07 PLN)
  • Export value: 0.8 billion EUR (in 2020)
  • Total of FDI positions: EUR 1.49 bn (NBP, 2020)

Data for companies employing over 49 people.

Strengths of the Polish aerospace industry

  • Over one hundred years of tradition
  • Well-developed network of suppliers
  • World-renowned product quality
  • Highly qualified workforce
  • Competitive production and labour costs
  • Continuous development of educational and training activities
  • Increasing tendency for companies to conduct research and development
  • The existence of aviation clusters (Podkarpacie, Śląsk)
  • Establishment of the Polish Space Agency in 2014.

Over one hundred years of tradition

Poland boasts a 100-year history of aviation, and over 80 years of aerospace industry tradition. Strong scientific, academic and engineering environments played a key role in the development of this sector. After the period of transformation in Poland, the expansion of international cooperation and direct foreign investments made the further development of the sector possible. Currently, the Polish aerospace industry has a rich export offer of advanced aviation products. Almost every passenger aircraft in the world features at least one component that has been produced in our country.

Well-developed network of suppliers

A dominant role in the Polish aviation sector is played by the world's largest companies from the industry. In the last dozen or so years, the five largest manufacturers of aircraft engines have located their production plants in Poland producing engines or their components. Most of them are located in southeastern Poland and belong to the so-called “Aviation Valley”. In Świdnik and Mielec, in the privatized and modernized plants with a long tradition, helicopters are produced by international powerhouses such as Sikorsky and AugustaWestland. The plant in Mielec is at the same time the largest production plant of the Lockheed Martin group outside the US. Poland is also the third largest production centre of UTC Aerospace Systems in the world.

However, the aviation industry in Poland is not focused solely on production. Many companies have also located their research and development centers here. One example is the Engineering Design Center of GE Aircraft Engines, which employs over 1,800 highly qualified engineers.

The latest two major investments of the aviation sector are the MROs of Lufhansa Technik consortia with MTU Aeroengines (EME Aero) and GE Aviation (Xeos). These aircraft engine service centers are another branch of the aviation industry in Poland and show the appreciation of the quality of highly qualified technical staff by the global leaders in this industry.

In total, more than 200 companies in the aviation sector and the space industry are located in Poland, with an annual sales value of up to 8.5 billion PLN and creating over 18,000 jobs. Most of them are small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) and companies with foreign capital and few enterprises with a minority share of the State Treasury. About 80% of the plants are located in the southeastern part of our country in one of the three existing clusters.

Selected companies operating in the aerospace sector:




Pratt & Wittney Rzeszów



WSK „PZL - Świdnik” / Augusta Westland



GE EDC Poland



PZL Mielec, Sikorsky a Lockheed Martin Company



Thoni Alutec

Stalowa Wola


Pratt & Whitney Kalisz



HS Wrocław



PZL „Warszawa Okęcie”, Airbus Defence and Space Company



HS Wrocław



Safran Transmission Systems Poland

Sędziszów Małopolski


MTU Aero Engines Polska



PZL „Warszawa Okęcie”, Airbus Defence and Space Company



WSK PZL Kalisz



Avio Aero



UTC Areospace Systems (Goodrich)



MB Aerospace



Hamilton Sundstrand Polan



Gardner Aerospace



Paradigm Precision



World-renowned product quality

The operating plants specialize in the production of aircraft (agricultural, training, and commercial), helicopters, gliders and components (aluminum, composites, GRFP) and accessories. The value of aviation production exports reached EUR 1 billion in 2016. The main export markets are: USA, Ukraine, Russia, Italy, Iceland, Saudi Arabia, Canada, and France.

Polish export hits

  • M18 Dromader is an agricultural plane, used mainly to extinguish fires. It comes from an American S-2R aircraft, but it has been thoroughly rebuilt relative to the original. With a loading capacity of up to 1,850 kg of water (or chemicals), it can efficiently spray over fields or areas of fires.
  • “Sokół” (Falcon) is an average weight multipurpose helicopter that has been produced in series for over 25 years at PZL Świdnik. Over 150 machines of this type are used in 12 different countries for both civil and military purposes. A dozen or so versions of "Falcon" were created - including combat versions, electronic combat versions, search and transport versions, police versions, anti-submarine versions and many more. “Sokół” is still in production, and to this day there are new business inquiries about the helicopter. 
  • Black Hawk is probably the most recognizable helicopter in the world. It is a multi-purpose helicopter used in dozens of armies around the world for over 40 years. The construction of the Black Hawk has undergone many improvements and modifications and is still subject to ongoing improvements today. One of the manifestations of such an improvement is the creation of the S-70i version - a development version of Black Hawk produced in our country.

High quality workforce

The development of the aviation sector would not be possible without qualified employees - every year over 40,000 engineers graduate from Polish technical universities  (including 3,250 graduates of automation and robotics, 6,000 graduates in mechanics and mechanical engineering, and 530 graduates in aerospace). A well-developed system of university education as well as vocational education and rich traditions are factors affecting the quality of the personnel of the aviation sector. In addition, thanks to initiatives such as AREOnet (www.areonet.pl), the cooperation between industry, local governments and the authorities of schools and universities has been improved in order to better prepare staff by developing a training program and adjusting the school profile to the needs of the labour market.

Selected universities and research centres related to the aeronautical sector:

  • The Warsaw Univeristy of Technology,
  • The Rzeszow Univeristy of Technology,
  • The Institute of Aviation,
  • The Silesian Science and Technology Centre of Aviation Industry,
  • The Military Univeristy of Technology,
  • The Wroclaw Univeristy of Technology,
  • The Lublin Univeristy of Technology,
  • The Lodz Univeristy of Technology,
  • The Silesian Univeristy of Technology.

Competitive production and labour costs

The production potential of enterprises lies mainly in the offered product quality (thanks to the knowledge of materials processing, foundry, mechanics and electronics) and competitive labour costs. The existing network of manufacturing and service companies in Poland supported by R&D centres offers potential for cooperation and the possibility of commissioning orders for the production of spare parts and finished products for the aviation sector.

Increasing tendency of companies to conduct research and development

The aviation sector was one of the sectors most affected by the COVID-19 pandemic. The European Funds however may help aviation industry recuperate . As part of the European Funds for Infrastructure, Climate and Environment (FEnIKS) program, investments in the airports of the Trans-European Transport Network (TEN-T) are being planned. Due to the availability of funds from the FEnIKS program, the safety and security of air traffic as well as the accessibility to airports will be increased through the implementation of road and rail projects. Entrepreneurs from the aviation industry who fit in with national and regional smart specializations will be able to obtain support for projects in the field of innovation, R&D or increasing competitiveness. As it had done in previous years, the new Partnership Agreement provides for the transfer of 60% of funds from the cohesion policy under the programs implemented at the national level. The perspective for 2021-2027 has a planned budget of EUR 25 billion.

At the initiative of aviation sector companies, the National Centre for Research and Development launched a dedicated sector-based INNOLOT support program - innovative aviation. The program's budget of PLN 400 million allows companies to obtain co-financing of research, development works and transfer of knowledge to the aviation industry.

The advanced level of processes used in the Polish aviation sector is well illustrated by participation in numerous international projects, such as the development of innovative engines including PurePower PW1000G (GTF), GEnx, LEAP. In the future, Polish participation in such projects will also increase thanks to the available subsidies.

Air and space clusters

  • Aviation Valley - is located in southeastern Poland, known for its developed aerospace industry and pilot training centres. The region is characterized by the largest concentration of aviation industry companies in Poland, research centres and developed educational and training facilities. Currently, the Association consists of 158 entities from the region.
  • Silesian cluster - The history of cooperation of companies from the aviation industry in Silesia dates back to the 80s of the last century. The leader of the Silesian Aviation Cluster - the Federation of Aviation Companies - was established in a natural way, as a result of real and concrete cooperation of 15 private companies, which as a result of the system transformation were founded in the region of Bielsko-Biała. Currently, the cluster includes several dozen entities, including universities and business environment institutions.
  • Wielkopolska Aerospace Cluster - It consists of six companies producing subassemblies for the aviation industry: Pratt & Whitney Kalisz, Wytwórnia Sprzętu Komunikacyjnego "PZL Kalisz", Vac Aero Kalisz, Meyer Tool Poland, Hamilton Sundstrand Kalisz and Teknequip Kalisz. These companies employ a total of nearly 2,500 people.
  • Lower Silesian Air Cluster - was established under the patronage of the Minister of Economy in 2014 in connection with the growing role of the aviation sector in south-western Poland, gathering in their ranks companies and institutions willing to cooperate for the development of the aviation industry in the region.
  • Klaster Lubelski
  • The National Center of Space and Satellite Engineering

Further development prospects

Polish companies from the aviation sector have undergone a huge transformation in recent years. From communist factories producing products of the old generations, through simple processes brought by international corporations, to the most modern automated production lines along with more and more numerous research and development centres developing state-of-the-art technologies.

The next years will surely bring a technological leap among Polish companies and an increase in the presence of foreign companies in Poland. Already today, partially due to the help of EU funds, technologies of printing components in 3D using metals, implementation of new solutions in engines and aircraft transmissions or created software for engine control are being developed in Poland.

It is worth mentioning that Poland also has a long tradition in the space sector and participates in many international scientific and technological projects. In November 2012, Poland became the twentieth full-fledged member of the European Space Agency with an annual budget of EUR 5.75 billion. This membership allows Polish companies and scientists to participate fully in many European space programs and missions. In addition to the membership in ESA, in 2014, the Polish Space Agency (POLSA) was established. POLSA is to fulfil governmental tasks in the field of research and development of new space technologies.

Useful links

www.dolinalotnicza.pl – Aviation Valley
www.aerosilesia.eu – Silesian Aviation Cluster
www.wkl.org.pl – Wielkopolska Aviation Cluster
www.ilot.edu.pl – Institute of Aviation
www.itwl.pl – Air Force Institute of Technology
www.areonet.pl – Centre of Advanced Technology Aeronet
www.scntpl.pl – Silesian Science and Technology Centre of Aviation Industry
www.parklotniczy.pl – Bielsko Aviation Technology Park
www.aeropolis.com.pl – Podkarpackie Science and Technology Park AEROPOLIS
www.cbk.waw.pl – Space Research Centre PAS
www.ulc.gov.pl – Civil Aviation Office
www.porty-lotnicze.com.pl – Polish Airports
www.kpk.gov.pl – Polish National Contact Point
www.kpk.gov.pl/en/potential/platforms/pl.html – Technology Platforms
www.ncbir.pl – National Centre for Research and Development

Source: Statistical Yearbook of Industry - Poland 2021 (GUS - Statistics Poland, February 2022); Production of industrial products in 2020 (GUS - Statistics Poland, July 2021); Foreign Direct Investment in Poland in 2020 (NBP, October 2021), EMIS database, European Funds webpage)

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