Malopolska Region is one of the most dynamically developing regions in Poland and Central Europe. It is located on the crossroads between the West (Austria, Germany) and the East (Ukraine), North (Scandinavia) and the South (Slovakia, Hungary), has unique advantages and attracts 8-10 million tourists each year, new investments and young people studying at Malopolska universities.
Region has approximately 3.2 million inhabitants and covers the area of 15.2 thousand square kilometers. The capital of Malopolska is historic Krakow (over 756 thousand inhabitants, the second largest city in Poland) - the cradle of the Polish state. The city is the home for more than 200 thousand students. Tourists admire the Wawel Royal Castle, the historic Old Town, the vibrant with life the Kazimierz district, museums, galleries, theaters and music stages. Krakow Airport, the second largest in Poland, supports approximately 3.5 million passengers each year, offers direct flights to the majority of European countries.
From Krakow, the roads lead to other urban centers of the region - Tarnow (over 115 thousand inhabitants), which is known among others from the well developed chemical industry, to Nowy Sacz (over 85 thousand inhabitants), which is the headquarter of numerous companies operating in the building materials branch, food processing and machine industry. Zakopane, Polish capital of winter sports and tourism, is located south of Krakow, in the heart of the Tatra Mountains - the most beautiful range of Polish mountains. Approximately 8 million people live within the 100 kilometers range of Krakow, what demonstrates the huge potential of the internal market.
Malopolska Region strongly cares about the natural environment protection. There are 6 national parks, numerous landscape parks and protected areas. As many as 8 historical sites in the Malopolska Region (including the Old Town of Krakow, Wieliczka Salt Mine and Auschwitz-Birkenau concentration camp) have been registered on the UNESCO World Heritage List. Malopolska is also the traditionally a place visited by the amateurs of winter sports, climbing, mountain hiking, biking and water tourism. Visitors can enjoy a golf fields, canoe tracks and horse farms.
One of the main assets of Malopolska is the potential of human resources. Over 10% of the region population has a university degree. 13% of Polish scientists work at Malopolska universities. The spending for R&D sector placed the region on the second position in Poland. The research of Malopolska students competition indicated that 65% of young people can speak English, besides well-known: German, Russian and French. 33 Malopolska’s universities educate staff in the field of technical sciences, economy, medicine, humanities. Malopolska produces 7.3% of Polish GDP (2010) and GDP per capita amounts to 8 thousand EUR. The value of direct foreign investments in Malopolska Region (2011) is 1.1 billion USD.