After the events of September 11 in the United States and consecutive terrorist attacks in Europe including London and Madrid, Poland places a significant emphasis on security of critical infrastructure within the country and its borders. In Poland, the security at major airports and ports, border crossings and government buildings is considered national security critical and resources are being allocated to protect Poland’s territory. Airports and border crossing points have already started to enhance their security controls. Poland’s major airport, Warsaw’s Okecie International Airport, has tightened its security measures and is constantly looking for improvements. Government and other official buildings along with embassies and multinational companies have followed suit.
Security has also become a prime concern for property owners. In addition, international regulations mandating increased security have led government and other organizations to seek for additional resources for security upgrades.
There are several factors driving the increase in sales of security products and services in Poland. Among these contributing elements are:
• The terrorist attacks mentioned above.
• Poland became a member of NATO in March 1999, and in doing so agreed to upgrade its military security to meet NATO goals.
• Poland became a member of European Union in May 2004, and in doing so agreed to upgrade its eastern border surveillance system to meet EU security requirements.
• Poland became a U.S. close ally in Europe through its support in international intervention in Iraq and Afghanistan, and in doing so became a potential target for terrorist attacks.
• Poland will host the EURO 2012 - European Football Championships, and in doing so is required to respond to new challenges including safety/security issues.
Poland’s geographic location within Europe makes it a logical gateway for legal and illegal immigrants entering the European Union. Law enforcement experts indicate that drug and weapons traffickers transporting their prohibited cargo into the rest of Europe also use the pathways used by illegal immigrants. Further, there are strong requirements within the EU, which intensify the demand for added controls at the Polish airports, seaports, and land borders. Finally, Polish military involvement in Iraq and Afghanistan contributes to a heightened interest in security products and services against terrorism.
Interest is focused on protection for government and other official buildings along with embassies and multinational companies, public spaces and events. This creates opportunities for U.S. security /safety manufacturers in the following areas: systems for security and surveillance, X-ray baggage and cargo screening control systems, camera enclosures, walk through (door-type) metal detectors, hand held metal detectors, card access control and alarm monitoring systems, surveillance and detection equipment, control panels, codified access supplies and cardkeys, alarm systems and electrical signaling, and other types of safety equipment.
By Zofia Sobiepanek-Kukuryka