Main Industry SectorsEconomic OverviewForeign Direct Investment [FDI]FDI Government MeasuresCountry Strong PointsCountry Weak PointsForeign Trade Overview
In Poland, agriculture employs less than 20% of the active population and contributes to about5% of the GDP. Poland is generally self-sufficient as far as food is concerned. The main crops are rye, potatoes, beetroot, wheat and dairy products. Poland breeds pigs and sheep as livestock farming. Poland is relatively rich in natural resources and the main minerals produced are coal, sulfur,copper, lead and zinc. The manufacturing industry is the economy driver, contributing to about 30% of the GDP,whereas the tertiary sector represents about 65% of the GDP. Polands main industrial sectors are machine manufacturing, telecommunications,environment, transport, construction, industrial food processing and information technologies. The automobile industry has resisted well the effects of the economic crisis because thissector was placed at the niche at the right time when there was a high demand for smalleconomic vehicles, which was exactly what Poland was producing
As a member of the European Union since 2004, Poland s economic situation wasstrengthened with its integration into the community.The growth of the GDP, which was solid between 2006 and 2008, was affected by theinternational economic crisis, but Poland was the only European country thatexperienced a positive growth in 2009.The growth of the GDP rose to 3.4% in 2010 and it should be stronger in2011, supported by the domestic demand and investments, a typical characteristic of theeconomies that are on the catching-up stage.The slowdown of the economy and some fiscal measures have intensified the deficit.The government has adopted a consolidating plan for public finance.The objective is to reduce the public deficit from 7% in 2010 to 3% in 2013 and to keepthe public debt under 55% of the GDP.The plan anticipates, among many issues, an increase of VAT and the privatization andreduction of manpower in the public administration.The unemployment rate, which had been on a steady decrease since 2004, has risenduring the crisis and it has reached 9.8% in 2010.
The flows of foreign direct investment in Poland slowed down after the global recession, but theirdynamism was met again in 2010. Poland figures among the most attractive countries in Europe in terms of FDI. The real estate sector represents more than 40% of the total FDI, due to the fact that besides the existingreal estate trade, the industry and services fields have also a large real estate component . The main assets of Poland are: its strategic position, its large population, its membership to the EuropeanUnion, its economic stability and its fiscal system which is attractive to the companies.
Investment assistance in special economic zones (SEZ); Entrepreneur access to European Union structural funds; Creation of industrial and technological zones that enable a synergy of companies working inthe same sector; Low costs of labor. In order to face the economic crisis and support long term foreign investments, the Polishgovernment has formulated a stabilization and development plan for the years 2009 and 2010 ofEuro 24 billion, particularly to grant credit to small and medium companies and invest inrenewable energy sources.
A fast-growing economy, location in central Europe, a multilingual work force and cheaplabor costs make Poland an internationally attractive country. Poland also enjoys a well managed healthy economy, which is withstanding the crisis betterthan other European countries. Central European countries, its population did not have to resort to loans in foreigncurrencies, in particular Swiss, a fact which protects the population from maximum debt.
Slow administrative procedures (according to the World Bank it takes31days to form a company) and a deficit in the current account are thenegative points linked to the Polish economy. The adoption of the Euro, initially planned for 2012 is compromised bythe financial crisis and thus delaying the benefits to the economy.
Poland is an open country to foreign investment. During the 2007-2009 period, trade represented more than 80% of the GDP. The geographical location of Poland gives it a strategic importance. As a fact, Poland is situated half-way between Paris and Moscow and between Stockholm and Budapest, and it has important portswhich are connected to the North Sea through the Baltic Sea. Poland constitutes an excellent place for the export of merchandise to the former Soviet republics. Poland became a member of the European Union, its exports have increased more than 30%, inparticular towards Russia (more than 75%). After having experienced a strong decline on its trade balance during the crisis, the country hasshown a very slight deficit on its trade balance in 2010, a trend that should continue during the nextfollowing years. The three main trade partners of the country are the European Union, Russia and China.
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