Analysts see Poland's GDP growth decelerating to 1.6% in 2009.

By bne IntelliNews January 28, 2010
Poland's economic growth decelerated to around 1.6% in 2009 from 5.0% noted a year before, according to bank economists surveyed by the ISB news agency. This result - positively distinguishing Poland among its CEE peers - is attributed mainly to high consumption level and good situation of exports-oriented enterprises, supported by a stable, albeit appreciating, zloty. Ten analysts surveyed by ISB expect the 2009 GDP growth of 1.63% on the average, with their forecasts in the range of 1.5-1.7%. This scenario is backed by gradually improving, especially in H2/2009, situation on global markets. This supported exports-oriented enterprises, but also prompted stocks rebuilding, as expectations of higher foreign orders re-emerged. The FX market also played its role in this respect: even though the zloty began to appreciate, especially in the last few months of the year, its upward trend has failed to push exports-oriented production into the red. This, in turn, provided an additional boost for the already rebounding industrial output. Other factors contributing to last year's economic growth were domestic in nature. The main driving force was private consumption. As the Polish economy is characterized by relatively low, when compared to other CEE countries, share of exports in GDP, it is the domestic market that matters the most. Last year, consumption demand was hurt by households' worsening economic situation and rising tension on the labour market, while it was additionally supported by tax cuts that took effect at the beginning of 2009, but also - continuously rising wages. Notwithstanding a strong impulse from EU-co-financed infrastructure projects, investments are expected to lower the ultimate GDP figure in 2009. The Central Statistical Office (GUS) is due to announce the 2009 GDP data on Thursday, Jan 28, at 10 am local time. ISB

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