Record-breaking results of Polish exports. Domestic producers are becoming increasingly competitive on foreign markets

2018-03-24  |  06:00
Says:Mateusz Walewski
Function:Chief Economist
Company:Bank Gospodarstwa Krajowego
  • MP4
  • In 2017 Polish companies exported goods with a value exceeding EUR 203 bn, and this year the results may be equally favourable. The economic situation of our major recipients in the EU is improving, and consumer and producer sentiments are on the rise. Machinery parts and food are our export hits, but, as experts point out, Polish exports are diversified and do not rely on a specific group of products, while domestic companies often find their market niches. In the years to come, even if the growth rate in exports decelerates, the share of Polish producers in the global market will still increase because of the relatively low prices.

    “The data presented by Statistics Poland are not the only indication that exports are growing; companies are noticing it as well. It will continue to rise at a similar rate. “This is related primarily to the improving economic situation in the euro area, which is our major trade partner, and the rising competitiveness of Polish companies,” emphasised Mateusz Walewski, Chief Economist at Bank Gospodarstwa Krajowego (BGK), in an interview with the Newseria Biznes news agency.

    The data released by Statistics Poland show that 2017 was a record-breaking year in terms of exports. In the previous year the value of sold goods exceeded EUR 203 bn, which is an over 10-percent increase. According to the experts, such a dynamic growth may continue to 2020. Exports are facilitated by, i.a., good economic conditions in global terms and in the countries which constitute the major sales markets for Polish producers – the European Union and the United States.

    “Polish exports are highly diversified  This is very good, because we don’t need to rely on a particular product or group of products. Machinery and equipment are the Polish export hit. “Another one, with a lower share but growing at the fastest rate, is Polish food, which is winning the hearts and stomachs of more and more Europeans,” Walewski explains.

    The majority of Polish food reaches EU countries, although a growing proportion is also exported to third countries, which are more exotic. As estimated by the Institute of Agricultural and Food Economics, this year the gains from the exports of agri-food products will exceed EUR 25 bn. The Statistics Poland data for the first three quarters of 2017 demonstrate that meat was the Polish export hit (a total of over EUR 3 bn), followed by dairy products (more than EUR 1 bn).

    We also sell a lot of machine parts and machines, e.g. for agricultural equipment and road works (approx. EUR 1.5 bn) and internal-combustion engines (nearly EUR 2.9 bn). In 2016 the most often exported goods were vehicle parts and accessories, cars, furniture and automatic data-processing machines.

    “Poland offers very good products with superior quality and reasonable price. Our companies often find niches where no other companies are active. One of the examples is yachts – Poland is one of the major producers of yachts in the world. “Polish companies are able to reach with their products the gaps created by withdrawn products, but they also can push the products made by foreign competitors out of the market,”  the Chief Economist at BGK assessed.

    In the first three quarters of 2017 alone the exports of yachts and motorboats exceeded EUR 338 m. A dynamic growth is also being observed on the Polish cosmetics market (from Poland's accession to the EU of approx. 300 percent).

    The successes of Polish companies abroad encourage further enterprises to join the game. The research by EY shows that 80 percent of companies operate internationally, and for two thirds of them exports development is a priority. According to the economist, these are the reasons for the good prospects for Polish exports.

    “Polish exports rely on the global economic situation, and if it continues to improve, exports will also see a dynamic growth. However, a decline in the economic situation does not necessarily mean that exports will deteriorate.  Polish exports might slow down, but Poland’s share in the global market may still increase, because our products are still relatively cheap. During an economic slowdown, consumers seek cheaper products with a good quality – this is an opportunity for Poland,”  Mateusz Walewski assessed.


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