|Prime Minister Donald Tusk waxed optimistic at the Economic Forum in Krynica-Zdrój|
Courtesy of KPRM/FLICKR
Prime Minister Donald Tusk has announced that he expects the Polish economy to pick up steam in the upcoming months, growing at a rate of 2 percent in Q4 of this year and by 3 percent in 2014. Mr Tusk made the comments at the Economic Forum in Krynica-Zdrój, in southern Poland, saying that “the crisis in Europe is ending. There will be no recession or stagnation in Poland.”
Mr Tusk said that the crisis had been “banging on [Poland’s] door but didn’t break it open. We didn’t let the crisis into Poland.”
“Today is a day on which we can announce victory: a victory over the crisis, which did not come to Poland in the end. This is also a day on which we are able to say that there are realistic chances for growth,” Mr Tusk added.
The prime minister expects Poland will end this year with its economy having grown by 1.5 percent. He also stated that by 2017, Poland’s GDP will be valued at zł.2 trillion, which would be double the figure of just 10 years prior. “That figure would make an impression on anybody,” Mr Tusk said.
Mr Tusk also announced that by 2016, his government would have introduced a “friendlier” tax system through a plan which the government will reveal details of in the autumn.
But are Mr Tusk’s predictions rooted in economic reality?
“Regarding the prime minister’s growth forecasts, in recent months an increasing amount of reasons have appeared to justify upgrading GDP projections for Poland. We recently upgraded our forecast to 1.2 percent growth in 2013 and 2.7 percent next year,” said Piotr Bielski, senior economist at BZ WBK.
“Nevertheless, Mr Tusk’s forecasts are slightly too optimistic. To grow by 1.5 percent this year we would have to grow by 2 percent in Q3 and 2.5 percent or higher in Q4 and that seems unlikely,” added Mr Bielski.
Przemysław Kwiecień, chief economist at X-Trade Brokers, agreed that Mr Tusk was being overly optimistic in his expectations. “Things will improve in the upcoming months, but 3 percent growth in 2014 is a bit of a stretch,” he said.
However, Mr Kwiecień added that based on inventory data he had seen recently, he would probably raise a June forecast he had made for 1.5 percent growth in the second half of 2013.
“I think it could be a bit higher than that,” he said.
Happy days here again?
After recording robust growth in 2011, when GDP expanded by 4.5 percent, the Polish economy has slowed down markedly, growing by 1.9 percent in 2012 and then at a snail’s pace of 0.5 percent in the first quarter of 2013.
However, Q2 of this year already showed some improvement in the economic climate, with growth accelerating to 0.8 percent, according to the Central Statistical Office.
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