About Poland

Living in Europe | Access to the culture of the host country/language courses | Poland
 

The Republic of Poland is situated in the heart of Europe, between the Carpathian Mountains and the Baltic Sea. It borders Sweden (sea border) and the Kaliningrad District of the Russian Federation to the north; Lithuania, Belarus and Ukraine to the east; Slovakia and the Czech Republic to the south; and Germany to the west. A point near Warsaw is the geometrical centre of Europe. The capital of Poland is Warsaw. The official language is Polish. Poland’s currency is the złoty (PLN).

Poland is a young parliamentary democracy. It rejoined the international community as a full and independent partner following political changes in 1989. It acceded to NATO in 1999 and to the European Union in 2004, and has become a committed member of other international organisations such as UN, OECD or WTO.

In accordance with a three-tier administrative system, the territory of the Republic of Poland is subdivided into 16 voivodships, 314 counties and 2,478 communes.

 

University of Szczecin, Faculty of Economics and Management, author: Marek Kowalczyk

After 1989 Poland began to transform its inefficient and indebted, centrally steered economy into a free market economy. Changes were initiated by a plan of systemic reforms aiming to achieve two strategic objectives: to combat hyperinflation and to build a market-based economic system. Privatisation and the development of capital market were the main pillars of structural changes. In April 1991, after a break of more than 50 years, Warsaw reopened its Stock Exchange. All those changes resulted in the emergence of new sectors (business and management consultancy, insurance, investment funds) and services (advertising, accounting, book-keeping and auditing, broking, and private notary services) on the market. With private enterprise allowed to operate freely and citizens investing their own resources, the sector of small and medium-sized enterprises was growing rapidly.

 

Business practices debate, author: Cracow University of Economics

Poland’s attractiveness to foreign investors stem from a number of factors, including its competitive labour costs, well educated and hard working labour force, geographical position, flexible and large market, diversified industry, and opportunities for the development of new business entities. Poland’s economic growth accelerated sharply following its accession to the European Union (1 May 2004). In 2008/2009 the economy has slowed down due to the world crisis, immediately accelerating after a couple of months.

 

Compared to other European countries, the current Polish economy is doing well. In 2015, in terms of the GDP value, Poland was on the 25th place in the world and ranked 8th in the EU. The annual GDP growth amounted to 3,6%, exceeding the average rate in the EU. The main component of the Polish GDP was domestic demand, while the influence of the international trade was neutral. The newest research papers and reports indicate that Polish economy will be experiencing a sustainable growth for sure until 2020 and maybe later on.