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    Poland Economy - 2003

      Economy - overview: Poland has steadfastly pursued a policy of economic liberalization throughout the 1990s and today stands out as a success story among transition economies. Even so, much remains to be done. The privatization of small and medium state-owned companies and a liberal law on establishing new firms allowed for the development of the private business sector, but legal and bureaucratic obstacles alongside persistent corruption are hampering its further development. Poland's large agricultural sector remains handicapped by structural problems, surplus labor, inefficient small farms, and lack of investment. Restructuring and privatization of "sensitive sectors" (e.g., coal, steel, railroads, and energy), while recently initiated, has stalled due to a lack of political will on the part of the government. Structural reforms in health care, education, the pension system, and state administration have resulted in larger than expected fiscal pressures. Further progress in public finance depends mainly on privatization of Poland's remaining state sector, the reduction of state employment, and an overhaul of the tax code to incorporate the growing gray economy and farmers of whom most pay no tax. The government's determination to enter the EU has shaped most aspects of its economic policy and new legislation. Improving Poland's export competitiveness and containing the internal budget deficit are top priorities. Due to political uncertainty, the zloty has recently depreciated in relation to the euro and the dollar while currencies of the other euro-zone aspirants have been appreciating.

      GDP: purchasing power parity - $368.1 billion (2002 est.)

      GDP - real growth rate: 1.3% (2002 est.)

      GDP - per capita: purchasing power parity - $9,500 (2002 est.)

      GDP - composition by sector: agriculture: 3.8%
      industry: 35%
      services: 61.2% (2000 est.)

      Population below poverty line: 18.4% (2000 est.)

      Household income or consumption by percentage share: lowest 10%: 3.2%
      highest 10%: 24.7% (1998)

      Distribution of family income - Gini index: 31.6 (1998)

      Inflation rate (consumer prices): 1.9% (2002)

      Labor force: 17.6 million (2000 est.)

      Labor force - by occupation: industry 22.1%, agriculture 27.5%, services 50.4% (1999)

      Unemployment rate: 18.1% (2002)

      Budget: revenues: $49.6 billion
      expenditures: $52.3 billion, including capital expenditures of $NA (1999)

      Industries: machine building, iron and steel, coal mining, chemicals, shipbuilding, food processing, glass, beverages, textiles

      Industrial production growth rate: 0.3% (2001)

      Electricity - production: 135 billion kWh (2001)

      Electricity - production by source: fossil fuel: 98.1%
      hydro: 1.5%
      other: 0.4% (2001)
      nuclear: 0%

      Electricity - consumption: 118.82 billion kWh (2001)

      Electricity - exports: 11.04 billion kWh (2001)

      Electricity - imports: 4.306 billion kWh (2001)

      Oil - production: 17,180 bbl/day (2001 est.)

      Oil - consumption: 424,100 bbl/day (2001 est.)

      Oil - exports: 53,000 bbl/day (2001)

      Oil - imports: 413,700 bbl/day (2001)

      Oil - proved reserves: 116.4 million bbl (January 2002 est.)

      Natural gas - proved reserves: 154.4 billion cu m (January 2002 est.)

      Agriculture - products: potatoes, fruits, vegetables, wheat; poultry, eggs, pork

      Exports: $32.4 billion f.o.b. (2002 est.)

      Exports - commodities: machinery and transport equipment 30.2%, intermediate manufactured goods 25.5%, miscellaneous manufactured goods 20.9%, food and live animals 8.5% (1999)

      Exports - partners: Germany 34.3%, Italy 5.4%, France 5.4%, UK 5.0% (1999)

      Imports: $43.4 billion f.o.b. (2002)

      Imports - commodities: machinery and transport equipment 38.2%, intermediate manufactured goods 20.8%, chemicals 14.3%, miscellaneous manufactured goods 9.5% (1999)

      Imports - partners: Germany 23.9%, Russia 8.8%, Italy 8.2%, France 6.8% (1998)

      Debt - external: $64 billion (2002)

      Economic aid - recipient: EU structural adjustment funds

      Currency: zloty (PLN)

      Currency code: PLN

      Exchange rates: zlotych per US dollar - 3.99 (2002), 4.09 (2001), 4.35 (2000), 3.97 (1999), 3.48 (1998)
      note: zlotych is the plural form of zloty

      Fiscal year: calendar year

      NOTE: The information regarding Poland on this page is re-published from the 2003 World Fact Book of the United States Central Intelligence Agency. No claims are made regarding the accuracy of Guinea Geography 2003 information contained here. All suggestions for corrections of any errors about Poland Economy 2003 should be addressed to the CIA.

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    Revised 20-Sep-03
    Copyright © 2003 Photius Coutsoukis (all rights reserved)