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POLAND 2009. REPORT ON FOREIGN TRADE  
Параметри: Економічне співробітництво, ЗЕД

 

MINISTRY OF ECONOMY
POLAND 2009
REPORT ON
FOREIGN TRADE
WARSAW 2009
2
Prepared by:
Ministry of Economy
Analyses and Forecasting Department
Kazimierz Miszczyk (Coordinator of the Foreign Trade Analyses Team),
Małgorzata Mendyk, Monika Walczak
Supervised by:
Aneta Piątkowska – Director of Analyses and Forecasting Department
Translation:
Magdalena Wajda-Kacmajor
ISSN 1429-3021
POLAND 2009 – REPORT ON FOREIGN TRADE
3
Table of contents
1 CHANGES IN EXTERNAL AND INTERNAL CONDITIONS ...................................................... 7
1.1 External conditions ................................................................................................................. 7
1.1.1 Escalation of the financial crisis into the real global economy in 2008........................... 7
1.1.2 Implications of the crisis for the economy and global trade in 2008 and in early 2009... 8
1.1.3 Changes in global prices and foreign exchange rates ................................................... 8
1.1.4 Situation in global trade ................................................................................................. 9
1.1.5 Prospects for the revival of the global economy........................................................... 16
1.2 Internal conditions ................................................................................................................ 18
1.2.1 Overall situation in the Polish economy ....................................................................... 18
1.2.2 Foreign exchange rates and their influence on commodities turnover ......................... 19
1.2.3 Situation of Polish exporters during the time of crisis................................................... 20
2 LONG-TERM CHANGES IN THE COMMODITIES TURNOVER ............................................. 21
2.1 Changes during the transformation period............................................................................ 21
2.2 Changes during the present decade..................................................................................... 22
2.2.1 Changes in turnover value ........................................................................................... 22
2.2.2 Changes in turnover volume ........................................................................................ 25
3 SIGNIFICANT CHANGES IN TURNOVER IN 2008 ................................................................. 27
4 SCALE AND DYNAMICS OF COMMODITIES TURNOVER IN 2008 ...................................... 29
4.1 Commodities turnover according to NBP data...................................................................... 29
4.2 Commodities turnover according to CSO data ..................................................................... 31
5 CHANGES IN THE GEOGRAPHICAL STRUCTURE OF COMMODITIES EXCHANGE......... 33
5.1 Changes seen from the continental perspective................................................................... 33
5.2 Changes among the main groups of countries ..................................................................... 34
5.3 The European Union............................................................................................................. 36
5.4 Commonwealth of Independent States................................................................................. 37
5.5 China and the Republic of Korea.......................................................................................... 38
6 CHANGES IN THE COMMODITY STRUCTURE ..................................................................... 39
6.1 Changes in the commodity structure in 2008 and their influence on trade balance.............. 42
7 DESIGNATION OF IMPORTED GOODS................................................................................. 49
7.1 Distribution of import............................................................................................................. 49
7.2 Influence of the import of crude energy materials on the total Polish import......................... 50
8 FORECAST FOR 2009............................................................................................................. 53
List of tables........................................................................................................................................ 56
List of charts ....................................................................................................................................... 57
 
POLAND 2009 – REPORT ON FOREIGN TRADE
5
SYNTHESIS
The external and internal conditions influencing the Polish foreign trade in 2008, and especially during
the second half of the year, worsened significantly due to the spreading global economic crisis.
According to the International Monetary Fund, the growth rate of the global economy dropped from
5.2% in 2007 to about 3.2% in 2008. The growth rate of global export volume, similarly as of import,
dropped from 6% to 2% (according to data of the World Trade Organization).
According to the European Commission, the economic growth rate in EU-27 fell from 2.9% in 2007
to 0.9% in 2008. In Germany, which is the most important market for Polish export, the GDP growth
rate fell from 2.5% to about 1.3%. The growth rate of domestic demand in countries of the
European Union has also slowed down significantly (from 3% to about 0.9%).
The economic crisis led to a decline in import demand, which turned out to be so deep, relatively
sudden and so widespread globally that it led almost immediately – already in November 2008 – to an
unprecedented decline of Polish turnover in all the important markets.
During the first three quarters of 2008, a dynamic increase of goods turnover with foreign contractors
was recorded – by 19.8% in export and by 23.8% in import, in October 2008 the turnover slowed down
significantly. In November, a decline was noted. During Q4 of 2008, export fell by 1.2%, and the import
growth rate was reduced to 3.7%.
Despite the breakdown of trade turnover during the last quarter of 2008, the annual growth rate
remained, for a fifth consecutive year, on a two-digit level. The value of export denominated in EUR rose
in 2008 by 14.1%, which was 1.7 percentage point slower than a year earlier, and the import growth rate
dropped by 1.2 percentage points, to 18.3%. The slowdown of export growth relative to import reached
4.2 percentage points, which was more than a year ago by 0.5 percentage point. As a result, trade
deficit deepened significantly, by EUR 7.7 billion, reaching the total level of EUR 26.2 billion.
The geographical structure of the Polish trade did not change significantly in 2008. The share of
developed countries in the Polish trade turnover fell slightly in comparison to 2007 - in export by 1.1
percentage point to 83%, and in import by 1.8 percentage point, to 69.3%. This was caused mainly by
the decrease in share of EU markets to 77.8% in export (drop by 1.1 percentage point), and to 61.9% in
import (by 2.3 percentage points). Export to the EU rose in 2008 by 1.6 percentage points slower than
import, which as a result reduced surplus in turnover with this market by almost EUR 0.8 billion, to the
level of barely EUR 2.3 billion.
2008 saw, for another time, a worsening of trade balance in exchange with developing countries.
Their share in export reaching 17% rose by 1.8 percentage point slower than in overall import (30.7%).
In consequence, the traditionally deep deficit of exchange with these markets deepened by further 5.4
billion Euro, to the level of almost EUR 24 billion. Thus, it constituted almost 91.5% of the overall Polish
trade deficit.
The scope of overall deficit in Polish trade is, almost traditionally, determined by the deeply
negative balance of trade with China and Russia. In 2008, the negative trade balance with only these
two markets amounted to EUR 18.4 billion, which accounted for 70.3% of total Poland’s trade deficit.
MINISTRY OF ECONOMY
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Changes in the export commodity structure in 2008 were moderate – similarly as a year earlier – which
may be a signal that the innovation and competitiveness of the Polish commodity offer is not growing
fast enough. The main carrier of innovation are the electromechanical goods, whose share in the
overall export rose by only 1 percentage point, compared to the previous year (to about 43%). Growth of
import in this group of commodities reached 18.3% and was faster by 2.5 percentage points in export,
which led to further deepening of deficit in the trade of electromechanical goods, by almost EUR 1.7
billion, totaling almost EUR 4.8 billion.
The balance of commodities exchange was negatively influenced by the results in trade of mineral
products and products of the chemical industry. In the trade of mineral products, deficit in 2008
deepened by EUR 3.4 billion, to the level of almost EUR 12.4 billion. This was caused mostly by rising
prices of imported crude energy materials, primarily by the record-high growth of petroleum prices. The
growth of import expenses in the trade of mineral products was compounded by the dynamic increase of
expenses for import of coal (by EUR 690 million, to the level of almost EUR 1.1 billion), coupled with
decline of revenues on the export of coal (by EUR 160 million, to less than EUR 1 billion).
In the analysis of changes in commodities structure in 2008, from the perspective of their negative
influence on exchange balance, we should note the traditionally high deficit (EUR 7.7 billion in 2007) in
the trade of products of the chemical industry, which in 2008 deepened further to the level of EUR
8.9 billion.
In 2007, a dynamic increase of import of metallurgy products was recorded, which led to an increase
of deficit by almost EUR 1.4 billion, to slightly less than EUR 1.8 billion. Conversely, in 2008 this was
reduced by almost EUR 740 million, to less than EUR 1 billion. This was caused primarily by the
reduction of negative balance in the trade of iron, steel and cast-iron (by almost EUR 390 million), as
well as aluminum and aluminum products (by EUR 170 million).
The outcomes of the global economic crisis influence the external and internal conditions of the Polish
foreign trade. This led to a dramatic collapse of turnover during the first months of 2009. After the first 5
months, export fell by 23.7%, and import by 30.9%. Since the beginning of 2009, we have observed -
contrary than during the previous years - a much larger decrease of import than export. This allowed
to halt the tendency of dynamic increase of trade deficit, noted for the last years, and next to
clearly reduce it. After 5 months of 2009, the negative trade balance amounted to less than EUR 3.3
billion, and was three times smaller than during the same period of the previous year.
It is expected that the reduction of turnover, especially in export, will gradually diminish in the coming
months of 2009. At the end of Q4, the decrease of export would probably stop completely.
If the opinions of OECD experts (contained in their last report of June 2009) come true - according to
them, Q2 of 2009 saw the positive breakthrough in overcoming the crisis – we could expect a significant
turning point in foreign trade from Q4 onwards.
POLAND 2009 – REPORT ON FOREIGN TRADE
7
1 CHANGES IN EXTERNAL AND INTERNAL CONDITIONS
1.1 External conditions
1.1.1 Escalation of the financial crisis into the real global economy in 2008
The first serious symptoms of financial crisis in the United States manifested themselves in mid-2007, in
the form of decreasing value of mortgage collateral for bank credits, which occurred due to breakdown
in the real estate market. However, the radical intensification of the crisis' influence on the real global
economy – first in the developed markets, and later on in developing ones – occurred a year earlier, i.e.
in September 2008.
Turbulences in the financial sector seriously limited the credit activity of banks – both for the production
and supply sphere, and for consumption needs of households. The outcomes of drastic reduction of
financial support for the areas of supply and demand manifested themselves with a vengeance, in the
form of widespread and deep collapse of trade.
The worsening of economic situation has seriously weakened trust, both among the business
community and the consumers. In view of seriously limited access to credit, households refocused on
rebuilding their savings and radically cut down on purchases of durable consumer goods, especially
cars.
The falling prices of petroleum oil and gas, very favorable for consumers in countries importing these
crude materials, caused a dramatic decline of foreign currency revenues in the exporting countries.
The rapid spreading of crisis to developed economies, observed since October 2008, visible in the form
of collapse of internal demand, economic growth and very severe decline of trade turnover, suggest that
the negative consequences of the current crisis are unprecedented. Such large scale of trade reduction
as was seen in most of these markets, and also in closely tied markets, including Poland, has not been
seen during any of the previous crises which were usually of regional nature.
The most important factors that bore upon this collapse include:
an extremely widespread and almost simultaneous collapse of demand in global markets;
the broadly developed, especially during the recent years, lines of international, vertical
cooperation links which lead to multiplication of the flow of components and semi-finished
products across borders of cooperating countries – and in this way contribute to faster
transfer of crisis consequences among these countries. Also, under the conditions of
developed cooperated networks and the related cross-border flows, there is the problem of
increasingly serious discrepancies between the gross flow of commodities streams, and the
actual value added at individual production stages (in the subsequent countries). This means
that changes – registered according to inventory and statistical procedures – in commodities
streams, including the scale of their crisis-influenced collapse, do not adequately reflect the
breakdown in value added and revenue, nor the other economic consequences, for example
reduction of employment;
MINISTRY OF ECONOMY
8
the severe limitation of access and worse financing terms for trade contracts, which is seen
as one of the most serious problems that require a systemic solution developed on the level
of government cooperation and international institutions, such as the WTO.
Aside from the above named factors, the WTO experts point to the protectionist trends, rising during the
recent times, which could have influenced the breakdown of world trade. Further growth of these trends
may avert the perspective for economic revival, and extend the current period of recession.
1.1.2 Implications of the crisis for the economy and global trade in 2008 and in
early 2009.
The sudden breakdown of global economic growth that occurred during the last months of 2008
remained in place also in 2009.
The weakened demand in developed economies caused a decline of assets and growing economic
uncertainty, which translated into a decrease of global production growth rate, from 3.5% in 2007 to
1.7% in 2008. This was the lowest level since 2001, and much smaller than average level from the past
ten years (which amounted to about 2.9%).
Developed economies managed to reach growth of barely 0.8% in 2008, as compared to 2.5% in
2007, and average 2.2% over the period 2000-2008.
On the other hand, the developing economies increased their production in 2008 by 5.6%, which was
almost 2 percentage points slower than in 2007, but still, that result was similar to the average growth
rate for the period 2000-2008.
Countries exporting petroleum oil achieved in 2008 average growth of export at 5.5%, with export
from the Middle East rising by 6.3%.
GDP in Europe, similarly as in Northern America, rose by barely 1% in 2008. Meanwhile, regions
exporting petroleum oil in South and Central America, the CIS, Africa and the Middle East
achieved growth rate exceeding 5%.
The GDP growth in Asia in 2008 was the product of extremely different results achieved by individual
economies of this region (Japan noted a decline of GDP by 0.7%, while China a growth by 9%). In
Australia and New Zealand, economic growth reached 5.7%.
The overall situation in the global economy in 2008, especially in developed economies and countries
exporting crude materials – especially energy crude materials, profiting from the record growth of these
materials’ prices, was based on two extremely different scenarios: continuation of growth almost until
the end of Q3, and the relatively sudden decrease in global prices, serious turbulences in foreign
exchange rates, reduction of demand, drop of the GDP and extremely deep breakdown of trade
turnover
1.1.3 Changes in global prices and foreign exchange rates
After the long-lasting depreciation of the US dollar in relation to other currencies – lasting since 2002 -
the effective exchange rate of the American currency towards a broad basket of currencies of the major
trade partners of the USA rose during 2008 and in early 2009.
POLAND 2009 – REPORT ON FOREIGN TRADE
9
A clear appreciation of the USD was seen in the second half of 2008, with the deepening of the financial
crisis. This was largely caused by the relatively sudden and far-reaching sale of investments
denominated in other currencies and their replacement with currency seen as the safest one during the
time of crisis (aside from the USD, the Japanese yen was also believed to be such currency).
In H1 of 2008, the euro gained 7% towards the dollar, and from January 2006 to July 2007 the
exchange rate EUR/USD gained 30%, but in H1 of 2008 the euro lost 14%.
The British pound, Canadian dollar and Korean won have also weakened sharply in relation to the USD,
while the Chinese yuan remained more or less stable during that period.
Prices of crude energy materials – petroleum oil and gas – fluctuated strongly in 2008. This caused the
trade situation in H2 of 2008 to be completely different from the first six months of the year
After a period of constant growth in 2007, petroleum prices reached their record level in mid-July 2008 –
over $140 per barrel. From June 2007 to July 2008, prices of fuels rose by over 140%, and next fell by
63% by the end of 2008.
Prices of other crude materials, including metals and food, also dropped from their record levels
achieved in early 2008. Due to serious weakening of demand in most countries of the world, inflation
was a rare occurrence, while the risk of deflation in some countries is seen as more realistic in the short
term.
1.1.4 Situation in global trade
1.1.4.1 Volume of commodities turnover in 2008
Volume growth of the global commodities turnover slowed down visibly in 2008 (to about 2%, against
6% in 2007). In this context, it should be noted that during periods of good economic situation the
growth of trade turnover usually exceeds growth of production, while in a situation of production decline
– as experienced in 2009 - the drop in trade turnover usually turns out to be even deeper
The growth rate in 2008 was much lower than the average growth rate of commodities turnover volume
in the years 1998-2008, which reached 5.7%.
Volume growth of the global commodities turnover in 2008 turned out to be similar to the growth in
global GDP, while a year earlier it exceeded the growth of GDP. It is foreseen that in 2009 the growth
rate of commodities turnover would be slower than the growth rate of global GDP.
The disproportions between the growth of GDP and commodities turnover volume in various areas of
the global economy, and in the major non-EU markets, were strong during the past three years.
In South and Central America, export volume rose only by 1.5%, which was twice slower than during the
two previous years, while the volume of import increased by over 15% - similarly as during the two
previous years. Growth of import in this region in 2008 was relatively the strongest among other regions,
and at the same time much faster than the GDP growth rate (5.3%), while the growth of export clearly
could not keep up with growth of GDP.
The region which stood out due to its fastest growth of export volume in 2008 (by 6% in comparison to
2007) was the CIS, which also had one of the highest import growth rates (15%).
MINISTRY OF ECONOMY
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In the Middle East region, 2008 saw a significant reduction in turnover volume growth, both in export
(from 4% in 2007 to 3% in 2008) and in import (from 14% in 2007 to 10% in 2008).
A similar reduction of export and import volume growth was observed in Africa. Export growth rate
dropped from 4.5% in 2007 to 3% in 2008, and import from 14% to 13%.
A clear slowdown of the turnover volume dynamics in 2008 was noted also in Asia. Export growth rate
dropped from 11.5% in 2007 and 13.5% in 2006 to 4.5% in 2008, and import from 14% to 13%. Import
volume growth decelerated from 8% to 4%.
However, the strongest reduction of export volume growth in 2008 was recorded in Europe (to the level
of barely 0.5% from 4% in 2007). At the same time import volume dropped by 1%.
In Northern America, the export volume growth rate dropped from 8.5% in 2006 and 5% in 2007 to
1.5% in 2008; and in import the volume growth of 6% in 2006 and 2% in 2007 transformed into a decline
of 2.5%.
Table 1 Changes in commodities turnover volume in the world in the years 2006-2008 (in USD)
GDP Export Import
2006 2007 2008 2006 2007 2008 2006 2007 2008
World 3.7 3.5 1.7 8.5 6.0 2.0 8.0 6.0 2.0
North America 2.9 2.1 1.1 8.5 5.0 1.5 6.0 2.0 -2.5
United States 2.8 2.0 1.1 10.5 7.0 5.5 5.5 1.0 -4.0
South and Central America 6.1 6.6 5.3 4.0 3.0 1.5 15.5 17.5 15.5
Europe 3.1 2.8 1.0 7.5 4.0 0.5 7.5 4.0 -1.0
European Union 3.0 2.8 1.0 7.5 3.5 0.0 7.0 3.5 -1.0
Commonwealth of Independent
States 7.5 8.4 5.5 6.0 7.5 6.0 20.5 20.0 15.0
Africa 5.7 5.8 5.0 1.5 4.5 3.0 10.0 14.0 13.0
Middle East 5.2 5.5 5.7 3.0 4.0 3.0 5.5 14.0 10.0
Asia 4.6 4.9 2.0 13.5 11.5 4.5 8.5 8.0 4.0
China 11.6 11.9 9.0 22.0 19.5 8.5 16.5 13.5 4.0
Japan 2.0 2.4 -0.7 10.0 9.5 2.5 2.0 1.5 -0.1
India 9.8 9.3 7.9 11.0 13.0 7.0 8.0 16.0 12.5
Newly industrialized Asian
countries* 5.6 5.6 1.7 13.0 9.0 3.5 8.0 6.0 3.5
* Hong Kong, Republic of Korea, Singapore and Taiwan
Source: Analyses and Forecasting Department of the Ministry of Economy, on the basis of data of the WTO from July 2009.
Chart 1 Changes in commodities turnover volume in selected countries and groups of countries in the
years 2006-2008 (in USD)
Changes in export volume
0
3
6
9
12
15
2006 2007 2008
% World
EU
CIS
North America
Asia
Changes in import volume
-5
0
5
10
15
20
25
2006 2007 2008
% World
EU
CIS
North America
Asia
POLAND 2009 – REPORT ON FOREIGN TRADE
11
Changes in export volume
0
5
10
15
20
25
2006 2007 2008
%
World
USA
Japan
China
India
Changes in import volume
-5
0
5
10
15
20
2006 2007 2008
%
World
USA
Japan
China
India
Source: Analyses and Forecasting Department of the Ministry of Economy, on the basis of data of the WTO from July 2009.
1.1.4.2 Global commodities turnover in current USD-denominated prices
Global export, measured in current USD-denominated prices, rose by 15% in 2008, reaching the total
value of $15.8 trillion. Export of trade services rose by 4% slower, to the level of $3.7 trillion.
Chart 2 Growth rate of commodities turnover in selected countries and groups of countries in the years
2006-2008 (in USD)
Export growth rate per continents
10
15
20
25
30
2006 2007 2008
%
World
North America
Europe
Asia
Africa
Import growth rate per continents
5
10
15
20
25
30
2006 2007 2008
%
World
North America
Europe
Asia
Africa
Export growth rate in the EU
-5
0
5
10
15
20
2006 2007 2008
%
World
EU
Germany
France
Great Britain
Import growth rate in the EU
0
5
10
15
20
2006 2007 2008
%
World
EU
Germany
France
Great Britain
MINISTRY OF ECONOMY
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Export growth rate in the CIS
10
15
20
25
30
35
2006 2007 2008
%
World
CIS
Russia
Import growth rate in the CIS
10
15
20
25
30
35
40
2006 2007 2008
%
World
CIS
Russia
Export growth rate in North America
0
5
10
15
20
2006 2007 2008
%
World
North America
USA
Canada
Import growth rate in North America
0
5
10
15
20
2006 2007 2008
%
World
North America
USA
Canada
Export growth rate in Asia
5
10
15
20
25
30
2006 2007 2008
%
World
Asia
China
Japan
India
Import growth rate in Asia
5
10
15
20
25
30
35
2006 2007 2008
%
World
Asia
China
Japan
India
Source: Analyses and Forecasting Department of the Ministry of Economy, on the basis of data of the WTO from July 2009.
POLAND 2009 – REPORT ON FOREIGN TRADE
13
Table 2 Growth rate of commodities turnover volume in the world in the years 2000-2008 (in USD)
Export Import
2008 2000-
2008 2006 2007 2008 2008 2000-
2008 2006 2007 2008
$ billion in % $ billion in %
World 15,775 12 16 16 15 16,120 12 15 15 15
North America 2,049 7 13 11 10 2,909 7 11 6 7
United States 1,301 7 15 12 12 2,166 7 11 5 7
Canada 456 6 8 8 8 418 7 11 9 7
Mexico 292 7 17 9 7 323 7 15 10 9
South and Central America 602 15 21 14 21 595 14 22 25 30
Brazil 198 17 16 17 23 183 15 23 32 44
Other 404 14 23 13 20 413 14 21 23 24
Europe 6,456 12 13 16 12 6,833 12 15 16 12
European Union 5,913 12 13 16 11 6,268 12 14 16 12
Germany 1,465 13 14 19 11 1,206 12 17 16 14
France 609 8 7 11 10 708 10 7 14 14
the Netherlands 634 13 14 19 15 574 13 15 18 16
Italy 540 11 12 18 10 556 11 15 14 10
United Kingdom 458 6 16 -2 4 632 8 17 4 1
Commonwealth of
Independent States
703 22 25 20 35 493 25 30 35 31
Russia 472 21 25 17 33 292 26 31 36 31
Africa 561 18 19 18 29 466 17 16 24 27
South Africa 81 13 13 20 16 99 16 26 12 12
Other African countries 481 19 20 17 32 367 18 13 28 31
Petroleum oil exporters 347 21 21 18 36 137 21 9 31 37
Other 133 15 18 15 22 229 16 15 27 28
Middle East 1,047 19 22 16 36 575 17 12 25 23
Asia 4,355 13 17 16 15 4,247 14 16 15 20
China 1,428 24 27 26 17 1,133 22 20 21 19
Japan 782 6 9 10 10 762 9 12 7 22
India 179 20 21 22 22 292 24 21 25 35
Newly industrialized Asian
countries*
1,033 10 15 11 10 1,093 10 16 11 17
* Hong Kong, Republic of Korea, Singapore and Taiwan
Source: Analyses and Forecasting Department of the Ministry of Economy, on the basis of data of the WTO from July 2009.
The slowest growth of commodities turnover, both in terms of export and import, was seen in North
America. Export from that region rose in 2008 by 10%, to the level of $2 trillion, while import grew by
7%, to the total level of $2.9 trillion.
Despite the recession, the USA remained the leader of global import. The value of import to the USA
in 2008 reached $2.2 trillion and accounted for 13.2% of total global import. In terms of export (total
value $1.3 trillion and share in global export at 8.1%), the USA ranked third among top exporters, after
Germany and China.
Similarly as in the North America, a relatively slow growth of turnover in 2008 (measured in US
dollars) was recorded in Europe. Both export and import rose by 12%, totaling, respectively $6.5 trillion
and $6.8 trillion. Both export and import accounted for over 41% of global commodities turnover
Germany maintained the position of global export leader, despite the fact that export from that
country, worth almost $1.5 trillion in 2008, reduced its share in global export to 9.1% from the 9.5% in
2007. During the same period import to Germany was worth over $1.2 trillion (7.3% of global import),
which means the country was the second largest global importer of goods – after the USA.
MINISTRY OF ECONOMY
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The share of developing countries in the global trade of commodities reached a new record in
2008. Their share in export rose to 38%, and in import to 34%.
In South and Central America, growth of commodities turnover was relatively dynamic. Export of that
region rose by 21%, reaching the total level of $602 billion; and import grew by 30%, to $595 billion.
In the Commonwealth of Independent States, similarly as in other regions whose economies are
based on the mining industry, export grew by 35%, totaling $703 billion, while import grew by 4
percentage points slower, reaching the level of $493 billion – much lower than import.
In Africa, as in other region with a wealth of natural resources, 2008 saw a dynamic growth of both
export and import. Export of that region rose by 29%, to the total level of $561 billion; and import by
27%, to $466 billion.
The fastest growth of export in 2008 was noted in the Middle East. It rose by 36%, to the level of $1
trillion, while import grew by 13 percentage points slower and reached $575 billion.
However, total export from Asia in 2008 rose by only 15%, which was over 2 times slower than in the
case of the Middle East, and its total value reached $4.4 trillion. Import rose by 20%, to the total level of
$4.2 billion. This was caused by the significant reduction of export from China, as despite the generally
strong position of this country in the global trade, export of some products from this market fell at the
end of 2008. The export of office and telecommunication equipment, whose value in 2008 exceeded
$381 billion, fell during Q4 of 2008 by 7% in comparison to the same period of the previous year; while
during the first three quarters of 2008 it rose on the average by 17%. This collapse was caused by the
particularly deep decline of export of the said products to the USA, which in Q4 of 2008 reached 13% -
compared to growth of export by 10%, seen still in Q3 of 2008.
The overall export of industrial products from China to the USA rose in Q4 of 2008 by barely 1%,
compared to the level from the previous year, while in Q3 of 2008 a growth by 14% was recorded.
One of the sectors that suffered most in the global recession was the motor vehicle industry. Export of
Japanese cars in 2008 fell by 18%, while export to the USA dropped in Q4 of 2008 by as much as 30%.
It is worth noting that motor vehicle products constituted in 2007 12% of the total export from developed
countries.
During Q4 of 2008, export of goods dropped by 12%, and the export of trade services also noted a
significant decline, although less pronounced, reaching 7-8%.
POLAND 2009 – REPORT ON FOREIGN TRADE
15
Throughout 2008 (measured on the basis of payment balance), export of trade services rose by 11%,
which was 4 percentage points slower than export of commodities. The United States remained the
global leader of global export and import of trade services - export was worth over $520 billion, and
import over $360 billion.
Table 3 The world’s largest exporters and importers in 2008
Value Share Annual
change Value Share Annual
Item Exporters in USD change
billion in %
Item Importers in USD
billion in %
1 Germany 1,465 9.1 11 1 United States 2,166 13.2 7
2 China 1,428 8.9 17 2 Germany 1,206 7.3 14
3 United States 1,301 8.1 12 3 China 1,133 6.9 19
4 Japan 782 4.9 10 4 Japan 762 4.6 22
5 the Netherlands 634 3.9 15 5 France 708 4.3 14
6 France 609 3.8 10 6 United Kingdom 632 3.8 1
7 Italy 540 3.3 10 7 the Netherlands 574 3.5 16
8 Belgium 477 3.0 10 8 Italy 556 3.4 10
9 Russia 472 2.9 33 9 Belgium 470 2.9 14
10 United Kingdom 458 2.8 4 10 Republic of Korea 435 2.7 22
11 Canada 456 2.8 8 11 Canada 418 2.5 7
12 Republic of Korea 422 2.6 14 12 Spain 402 2.5 3
13 Hong Kong 370 2.3 6 13 Hong Kong 393 2.4 6
14 Singapore 338 2.1 13 14 Mexico 323 2.0 9
15 Saudi Arabia 329 2.0 40 15 Singapore 320 1.9 22
16 Mexico 292 1.8 7 16 Russia 292 1.8 31
17 Spain 268 1.7 6 17 India 292 1.8 35
18 Taiwan 256 1.6 4 18 Taiwan 240 1.5 10
19 United Arab
Emirates
232 1.4 28 19 Poland 204 1.2 23
20 Switzerland 200 1.2 16 20 Turkey 202 1.2 19
21 Malaysia 200 1.2 13 21 Australia 200 1.2 21
22 Brazil 198 1.2 23 22 Austria 184 1.1 13
23 Australia 187 1.2 33 23 Switzerland 183 1.1 14
24 Sweden 184 1.1 9 24 Brazil 183 1.1 44
25 Austria 182 1.1 11 25 Thailand 179 1.1 28
26 India 179 1.1 22 26 Sweden 167 1.0 10
27 Thailand 178 1.1 17 27 United Arab
Emirates
159 1.0 20
28 Poland 168 1.0 20 28 Malaysia 157 1.0 7
29 Norway 168 1.0 23 29 Czech Republic 142 0.9 20
30 Czech Republic 147 0.9 20 30 Indonesia 126 0.8 36
Total 13,120 81.4 - Total 13,409 81.7 -
World * 16,127 100.0 15 World 16,415 100.0 15
* - the data takes into account re-export value, and import used for re-export
Source: Analyses and Forecasting Department of the Ministry of Economy, on the basis of data of the WTO from July 2009.
The scope of the global trade collapse is very clearly illustrated by the significant decline in the value of
international goods consignments. According to data of the International Air Transport Association
(IATA), air freight dropped in December 2008 by 23%, compared to the December 2007. This was
caused by the particularly deep, reaching 26%, breakdown in air freight in the Asia and Pacific region.
The value of annual trade turnover in 2008, measured in US dollars, was strongly determined by the
changing prices of petroleum oil and gas, and fluctuations in foreign exchange rates.
MINISTRY OF ECONOMY
16
The fuel prices dropped in last months of 2008 below their 2007 level, but their average 2008 level
turned out to be over 40% higher than during the previous year. This has significantly influenced growth
in import value for most countries. For example, the overall value of import to the USA in 2008 rose by
7%, and if fuel prices are excluded from the calculation, the growth reaches only 1%.
1.1.5 Prospects for the revival of the global economy
Projections for the development of macroeconomic situation in countries of the OECD, and major non-
OECD markets, presented in the June report of this organization, for the first time since mid-2007 were
more optimistic than previous forecasts. After six months of extreme breakdown of production and GDP
which lasted until March 2009, the recent months saw an alleviation of this downward trend. The
financial conditions for business remain very difficult. They did relent in the recent period, but the first
symptoms for overcoming the crisis are expected in H2 of 2009, and the phase of gradual revival seems
realistic only in H1 of 2010.
It is expected that after the period of relatively long-lasting and deep recession in many regions of the
global economy, followed by a period of stagnation, only the Q4 of 2010 can be expected to bring a
moderate growth of the GDP and certain improvement of the basic macroeconomic relations in the
major OECD markets, and also in the major non-OECD countries (Brazil, Russia, India and China).
Table 4 Growth rate of the global GDP and commerce in the years 1996-2010
1996-2005 2006 2007 2008 2009 2010
GDP growth 3.7 4.7 4.5 2.4 -2.2 2.3
Global commerce growth 6.9 9.5 7.1 2.5 -16.0 2.1
Source: Analyses and Forecasting Department of the Ministry of Economy, on the basis of data of the OECD from June
2009.
Chart 3 Changes in global commerce in quarterly perspective – Q3 2008 – Q4 of 2010
-40
-30
-20
-10
0
10
III IV I II III IV I II III IV
2008 2009 2010
%
Source: Analyses and Forecasting Department of the Ministry of Economy, on the basis of data of the OECD from June
2009.
It is expected that economic situation in the United States in H2 of 2009 would stabilize to a certain
degree, largely thanks to government support programs. As the financial conditions improve in 2010,
the condition of domestic enterprises and their motivation to invest would grow stronger. The growth
scale would be determined by a significant weakening of the labor market and consumer expenses.
However, even if potential growth would be limited by decelerated capital accumulation, the revival
would be sufficient to halt further growth of unemployment.
POLAND 2009 – REPORT ON FOREIGN TRADE
17
With respect to Japan, it is expected that H2 of 2009, primarily thanks to strong fiscal stimulation, can
see the beginning of moderate growth of the GDP. In the short term, the external sector is not expected
to participate in the growth, due to poor situation of the main trade partners, and due to strengthening of
the yen. The restoration of moderate export growth at the end of 2009 should allow to stop the
downward trend in investments made by enterprises, and also to strengthen consumption in 2010. GDP
growth in 2010 in Japan would be very slow and is not expected to exceed 0.75%. Due to significant
increase of unemployment, it is expected that deflation would remain in place.
The largest uncertainty regarding development perspectives is tied to the Euro Zone – the most
important market for Poland. The expectations that recession would continue into H2 of 2009 were
mitigated by the recent reports on economic results of the Euro Zone for Q2 of 2009.1 It should however
be kept in mind that due to increase of unemployment, more difficult financing terms and progressive
collapse in the housing market in some countries, there shall be a further decline of private investments
and consumption. On the other hand, largely due to official support for economic activity in the form of
increased demand from the government sector, the rate of decline would be more moderate than during
the first six months of the crisis.
In 2010 the growth in global commerce would become more durable, which would allow to restore the
original export potential of Euro Zone countries. At the same time, the support policy for enterprises and
improved conditions for their financing would stimulate their investment activity.
After the period of sharp collapse in the global trade, from Q3 of 2008 to mid-2009, gradual stability and
slow entering of the growth path are expected at the end of the year. This long-awaited turn shall be
supported by the increasingly visible and relatively rapid revival in non-OECD markets.
The economy of China has already entered the revival phase, and its growth in 2010 is expected to
reach more than 9%. The revival in India is increasingly visible, and economic growth of Brazil would
accelerate in H2 of 2009, due to increased domestic demand achieved thanks to improved business
financing conditions and fiscal incentives.
As for the economy of Russia, it is expected that after the struggle in the first months of 2009 it would
grow at a moderate rate, thanks to rising prices of crude materials and also thanks to official support
programs.
Table 5 Growth rate of the global commerce in selected countries, in the years 2006-2010
2006 2007 2008 2009 2010
World 9.5 7.1 2.5 -16.0 2.1
OECD 8.3 5.3 1.2 -15.6 1.0
NAFTA 6.9 4.6 0.4 -15.3 1.5
Asian members of OECD 7.9 7.9 3.2 -17.7 4.9
European members of OECD 9.0 5.1 1.2 -15.2 0.0
Asian non-OECD countries 14.2 10.6 3.9 -16.4 5.9
Other non-OECD countries 9.3 11.1 6.7 -17.6 2.2
Source: Analyses and Forecasting Department of the Ministry of Economy, on the basis of data of the OECD from June
2009.
1 Communiqué of Eurostat, dated August 13, 2009
MINISTRY OF ECONOMY
18
1.2 Internal conditions
1.2.1 Overall situation in the Polish economy
Despite the global worsening of economic situation and the visible economic slowdown in Poland in H2
of 2008, the economic growth in early 2009 remained positive. Experts of the OECD state that this
results from the relatively small dependence of Poland’s economy on foreign trade, low level of interest
rates, moderate debt level of the private sector, reductions of income tax rates and the carrying out of
numerous projects subsidized with EU funds.
GDP growth in 2008 amounted to 4.9%, and this result was lower than during the previous two years (in
2006, GDP rose by 6.2%, and in 2007 by 6.8%). After three quarters of 2008, economic growth
amounted to 5.7%, but a serious slowdown was recorded in Q4, when the growth rate dropped to 2.9%.
During Q1 of 2009, economic growth in Poland reached 0.8%. The slower growth of GDP is due to
weaker consumption and investment levels.
The falling prices in the real estate market and the program of subsidized mortgage loans for lowerincome
households prevented a more pronounced decline of gross investment outlays.
The growth rate of salaries declined gradually. In order to facilitate short-term adaptation of the labor
market to the current conditions, more flexible labor law regulations shall be introduced. It is believed
that support in this area would positively influence levels of employment, but it can simultaneously slow
down the restructuring in manufacturing industry, and cause a decrease of production profits.
The expansive fiscal policy resulted in high budget deficit. In 2008, it reached 3.9% of the GDP and was
among the highest in the region. As the level of public debt rises, a more strict fiscal discipline shall be
required, supported with the reform of public finances.
The National Bank of Poland reacted quickly to the crisis by reducing interest rates by 250 basis points,
to the level of 3.5%. This resulted also in reduction of the mandatory minimum reserve level, which
should increase liquidity in the banking sector. Despite the fact that Polish banks did not suffer directly
from the crisis, certain tensions are felt in the interbank market, and the conditions for borrowing money
have become sharper.
Forecasts presented in the justification for the Budget Law state that in 2009 the growth of GDP should
reach 0.2%. According to the latest forecasts of the OECD (June 2009), GDP in Poland in 2009 would
fall by 0.4%, and in 2010 would increase by only 0.6%. It is believed that economic growth would remain
on a similar level for the next two years. The slight improvement in 2010 would not lead to reduction of
economic stagnation. It is believed that economic revival would be positively influenced by decreases in
foreign exchange rates, low level of interest rates, better utilization of the EU funds and investment
projects tied to organization of the Euro 2012 Football Championships.
POLAND 2009 – REPORT ON FOREIGN TRADE
19
1.2.2 Foreign exchange rates and their influence on commodities turnover2
Among the parameters that directly influence the profitability of foreign trade, the main ones are
transaction prices in export and import. Their changes are determined by changes of foreign
currency prices (of which some are based on global prices) and by the nominal exchange rate of the
Polish zloty (PLN) in relation to the basket of basic currencies (primarily the EUR and USD).
The present crisis caused serious changes in the transaction prices’ level, especially in export.
Their level rose by 21.4% during Q1 of 2009, compared to Q3 of 2008, that is, the period preceding the
crisis. Such a significant increase of these prices despite the serious decline of foreign currency prices
resulting from the crisis was possible thanks to the deep – also closely tied to the crisis – depreciation of
the zloty in relation to the main currencies. Decrease of foreign currency prices in export in Q1 of 2009,
by 12.4% in comparison to Q3 of 2008, was more than compensated to the exporters by the relatively
sudden and deep depreciation of the zloty that occurred when the crisis reached Poland.
Weakening of the zloty was therefore a very positive buffer, alleviating the negative outcomes of
recession and decrease of foreign currency prices for the financial condition of the exporters –
especially among the SME.
Chart 4 Dynamics of transaction and foreign currency prices in export compared to changes in the
effective FX rate (Q4 of 2000 = 100%)
85
100
115
130
145
IV I II III IV I II III IV I II III IV I II III IV I II III IV I II III IV I II III IV I II III IV I
2000 2001 2002 2003 2004 2005 2006 2007 2008 2009
%
Transaction prices
Foreign currency prices
Changes in the effective FX rate
Source: Analyses and Forecasting Department of the Ministry of Economy, on the basis of data of the CSO.
At the same time, the significant and sudden depreciation of the zloty caused a serious cost shock in
import. This applies especially to import designated for domestic consumption, but also to supply import
designated for export manufacturing with relatively long production cycle, as the cost of financing
inventories under conditions of limited and more expensive external financing, as well as the risk of
losing sale opportunities under the crisis situation become excessively high. Despite the decrease of
foreign currency prices in import (by over 9% in Q4 of 2008 and by 7.9% in Q1 of 2009), transaction
prices in import rose in Q4 of 2008 and Q1 of 2009 by 6% and 9.3%, respectively.
2 If not otherwise stated, all percentages in this section apply to changes in comparison to the previous quarter.
MINISTRY OF ECONOMY
20
Chart 5 Dynamics of transaction and foreign currency prices in import compared to changes in the
effective FX rate (Q4 of 2000 = 100%)
85
100
115
130
145
IV I II III IV I II III IV I II III IV I II III IV I II III IV I II III IV I II III IV I II III IV I
2000 2001 2002 2003 2004 2005 2006 2007 2008 2009
%
Transaction prices
Foreign currency prices
Changes in the effective FX rate
Source: Analyses and Forecasting Department of the Ministry of Economy, on the basis of data of the CSO.
1.2.3 Situation of Polish exporters during the time of crisis
The significant depreciation of the zloty increased sales profitability for the Polish exporters, but
at the same time exerted a negative influence on the financial operations of these enterprises,
due to their transactions in the derivatives market.
According to information obtained by the Polish Financial Supervision Authority from the banks,
negative valuation tied to exposure of enterprises to foreign currency options totaled, at April 17, 2009,
about PLN 4.5 billion3. The negative valuation of other foreign currency derivatives amounted to:
forward transactions4 – about PLN 3.6 billion, swap transactions5 – about PLN 1.1 billion.
Weakening of the zloty exerts also negative influence on those enterprises which contracted
obligations in foreign currencies, which exposes them to increase of financial costs tied to
repayment of interest.
It is expected that the weakening of demand for Polish export goods would have a more pronounced
influence on large enterprises. Small and medium enterprises usually finance their activity with their own
resources, and contrary to large companies, relatively rarely use bank credits. Problems with obtaining
credit from the banks will be one of the major reasons for financial difficulties, which could lead to
increased number of bankruptcies in 2009.
3 At exchange rate EUR/PLN = 4.2848 and USD/PLN = 3.2764
4 A transaction for the purchase or sale of currency in the future at an exchange rate specified at the contract date.
5 Contracts applying to credits, regarding conversion of currency or change of interest rate.
POLAND 2009 – REPORT ON FOREIGN TRADE
21
2 LONG-TERM CHANGES IN THE COMMODITIES
TURNOVER
2.1 Changes during the transformation period
From the beginning of the past decade, Poland’s foreign trade turnover increased significantly. Export
rose from $14.9 billion in 1991 to $171.9 billion in 2008, while import from $15.5 billion to $210.5 billion.
As a result, the deficit of commercial exchange deepened significantly, from $0.6 billion in 1991 to $38.6
billion in 2008.
Table 6 Foreign trade turnover according to data of the Central Statistical Office, in the years 1991-2008
million USD previous year = 100 million EUR previous year = 100
Export Import Balance Export Import Export Import Balance Export Import
1991 14,903 15,522 -619 104.1 162.9
1992 13,187 15,913 -2,726 88.5 102.5
1993 14,143 18,834 -4,691 107.2 118.4
1994 17,240 21,596 -4,356 121.9 114.7
1995 22,895 29,050 -6,155 132.8 134.5
1996 24,440 37,137 -12,697 106.7 127.8
1997 25,751 42,307 -16,556 105.4 113.9
1998 28,229 47,054 -18,825 109.6 111.2
1999 27,407 45,911 -18,504 97.1 97.6 25,670 43,050 -17,381
2000 31,651 48,940 -17,289 115.5 106.6 34,373 53,085 -18,711 133.9 123.3
2001 36,092 50,275 -14,183 114.0 102.7 40,195 56,035 -15,840 116.9 105.6
2002 41,010 55,113 -14,103 113.6 109.6 43,499 58,480 -14,981 108.2 104.4
2003 53,577 68,004 -14,427 130.6 123.4 47,526 60,354 -12,827 109.3 103.2
2004 73,781 88,156 -14,375 137.7 129.6 59,698 71,354 -11,656 125.6 118.2
2005 89,378 101,539 -12,161 121.1 115.2 71,424 81,170 -9,746 119.6 113.8
2006 109,584 125,645 -16,061 122.6 123.7 87,926 100,784 -12,858 123.1 124.2
2007 138,785 164,172 -25,387 126.6 130.6 101,838 120,389 -18,550 115.8 119.4
2008 171,860 210,479 -38,619 123.8 128.2 116,244 142,448 -26,204 114.1 118.3
Source: Analyses and Forecasting Department of the Ministry of Economy, on the basis of data of the CSO.
During the analyzed period, the values of both foreign trade streams rose very dynamically. Since 2000
a revival in Polish commercial exchange was observed, especially in export, whose value measured in
US dollars increased by 5.4 times (import rose by 4.3 times). During the years 2000-2008 the average
growth rate of export and import measured in US dollars amounted to 22.8% and 18.8%, respectively.
The average annual growth of turnover value, measured in the European common currency, was slower
than the dollar-denominated growth in the years 2000-2008 and amounted to 18.5% in export, and
14.5% in import. However, in this case too, the growth of export for the past 8 years (3.4 times) was
clearly faster than in the case of import (2.7 times).
MINISTRY OF ECONOMY
22
Chart 6 Changes in Poland’s export denominated in US dollars, for the years 1991-2008 (in %)
4,1
-11,5
7,2
21,9
32,8
6,7 5,4
9,6
-2,9
15,5 14 13,6
30,6
37,7
21,1 22,6
26,6
23,8
-15
-10
-5
0
5
10
15
20
25
30
35
40
1991
1992
1993
1994
1995
1996
1997
1998
1999
2000
2001
2002
2003
2004
2005
2006
2007
2008
%
Source: Analyses and Forecasting Department of the Ministry of Economy, on the basis of data of the CSO.
Chart 7 Changes in Poland’s import denominated in US dollars, for the years 1991-2008 (in %)
62,9
2,5
18,4
14,7
34,5
27,8
13,9 11,2
-2,4
6,6
2,7
9,6
23,4
29,6
15,2
23,7
30,6 28,2
-10
0
10
20
30
40
50
60
70
1991
1992
1993
1994
1995
1996
1997
1998
1999
2000
2001
2002
2003
2004
2005
2006
2007
2008
%
Source: Analyses and Forecasting Department of the Ministry of Economy, on the basis of data of the CSO.
2.2 Changes during the present decade
2.2.1 Changes in turnover value
In the years 2000-2008 a dynamic increase of export, of almost 3.4 times, was observed, to the total
level of EUR 116.2 billion (in 2000, the value of export amounted to EUR 34.3 billion). During the same
period, import increased by 2.7 times, totaling EUR 142.4 billion.
After a period of slower export growth from 33.9% in 2000 to 9.3% in 2003 and its acceleration during
the subsequent three years (on the average, by 23%), 2007 brought another slow-down to the level of
15.8%. This deceleration was even more pronounced in 2008, when due to significant decline of export
POLAND 2009 – REPORT ON FOREIGN TRADE
23
during the last two months (in November and December the decline reached 9.1% and 7.4%,
respectively), its annual growth rate amounted to 14.1%.
Trade deficit was being systematically reduced from EUR 18.7 billion in 2000 to EUR 9.7 billion in 2005.
During the past three years it deepened again, reaching EUR 26.2 billion in 2008. At the same time, its
geographical structure changed. In 2000, the overall deficit was dominated by share of developed
countries (62%), including EU members (46%). In 2008, similarly as a year earlier, the negative trade
balance was recorded primarily with developing countries, accounting for 74%. In exchange with the
European Union, year 2008 brought a surplus of almost EUR 2.3 billion, which was EUR 791 million
less than in 2007.
In turnover with countries of the CIS, deficit amounted to almost EUR 5.6 billion, which was almost EUR
2 billion more than in 2000 and EUR 2.3 billion more than in 2007. This was caused by the record-high
growth of prices of crude energy materials imported from Russia (the negative balance in trade of
mineral products deepened by EUR 2.4 billion, to EUR 10.2 billion in 2008).
Since 2000, significant changes occurred in the geographical structure of the Polish export. This was
largely due to Poland’s accession to the European Union. The group of developed countries account for
the largest share in the total Polish export. From 2000 to 2008 this share fell by 4.6 percentage points,
to the level of 83%. The second group, similarly as in 2007, are countries of Central and Eastern
Europe, absorbing 10.3% of the total Polish export which was 3.9 percentage points more than in 2000.
In the commodity structure, important quality changes occurred in the years 2000-2008. They included
increase of the share of highly processed products of the electromechanical industry (by 7.7 percentage
points, to the level of 42.9%). The same applied to the chemical industry (2.1 percentage points, to
12%), while the share of light industry products dropped by 6 percentage points, to 3.6%, as did the
share of wood and paper industry (by 1.8 percentage point, to 5.1%). In import, the largest change
occurring over the past 8 years was the rising share of metallurgy products by 3 percentage points to
11.3%.
In terms of export value, the largest changes in the years 2000-2008 were seen in the group of
electromechanical goods – export increased by EUR 37.8 billion. In the course of nine years, Poland
became an important producer and exporter of cars and other vehicles designated for transport of
people (CN 8703), where export grew by EUR 5.1 billion to the total of EUR 6.7 billion; car parts and
accessories (CN 8708), where export grew by about EUR 4.8 billion, to almost EUR 5.7 billion.
Chart 8 Changes in exchange of commodities, aggregated in 10 commodities groups, measured in EUR
million
Agricultural and food products
-2 000
0
2 000
4 000
6 000
8 000
10 000
12 000
14 000
2001 2002 2003 2004 2005 2006 2007 2008
Export
Import
Balance
Mineral products
-13 000
-8 000
-3 000
2 000
7 000
12 000
17 000
22 000
2001 2002 2003 2004 2005 2006 2007 2008
Export
Import
Balance
MINISTRY OF ECONOMY
24
Chemical industry products
-12 000
-7 000
-2 000
3 000
8 000
13 000
18 000
23 000
2001 2002 2003 2004 2005 2006 2007 2008
Export
Import
Balance
Leather goods
-600
-400
-200
0
200
400
600
800
1 000
2001 2002 2003 2004 2005 2006 2007 2008
Export
Import
Balance
Wood and paper industry products
0
1 000
2 000
3 000
4 000
5 000
6 000
7 000
2001 2002 2003 2004 2005 2006 2007 2008
Export
Import
Balance
Light industry products
-4 000
-2 000
0
2 000
4 000
6 000
8 000
2001 2002 2003 2004 2005 2006 2007 2008
Export
Import
Balance
Ceramic products
-500
0
500
1 000
1 500
2 000
2 500
3 000
3 500
2001 2002 2003 2004 2005 2006 2007 2008
Export
Import
Balance
Metallurgy products
-5 000
0
5 000
10 000
15 000
20 000
2001 2002 2003 2004 2005 2006 2007 2008
Export
Import
Balance
Electric and machinary goods
-10 000
0
10 000
20 000
30 000
40 000
50 000
60 000
2001 2002 2003 2004 2005 2006 2007 2008
Export
Import
Balance
Miscellaneous and unclassified goods
0
1 000
2 000
3 000
4 000
5 000
6 000
7 000
8 000
2001 2002 2003 2004 2005 2006 2007 2008
Export
Import
Balance
Source: Analyses and Forecasting Department of the Ministry of Economy, on the basis of data of the CSO.
POLAND 2009 – REPORT ON FOREIGN TRADE
25
2.2.2 Changes in turnover volume
In the years 2001-2005, volume of export was rising faster than of import. During that period export
grew by an average of 13.5% annually, while import volume increased by 8.2%. In 2006, the growth rate
of export volume exceeded the growth rate of import volume, and this trend remained in place for three
subsequent years. During that period, the average annual import volume growth reached almost 13.6%,
while the growth of export volume was slower by almost 2.8 percentage points and reached 10.8%.
In 2006, the export volume growth amounted to 16.8% and was only 0.7 percentage point slower than
growth of import. In 2007, the import volume growth reached 15.1% and exceeded by 5.9 percentage
points the growth of export volume (9.4%). In the past year, this difference fell to 1.9 percentage points
(export volume dropped by 6.9%, and import by 8.2%).
Table 7 Dynamics of the commodities turnover volume in the years 2001-2008
2001 2002 2003 2004 2005 2006 2007 2008
Volume
export 111.8 108.3 118.7 118.2 110.6 116.1 109.4 106.9
import 103.2 107.3 108.2 117.3 105.2 116.8 115.1 108.8
Source: Analyses and Forecasting Department of the Ministry of Economy, on the basis of data of the CSO.
If the growth of transaction prices of Q1 of 2009 is taken into account – in export by 17.8% and in import
by 12.6% - this leads to estimate that during this period the decrease of commodities turnover exceeded
20% in export, and 21% in import. This means that both in terms of value and volume the import
decreased more than export from early 2009.
 
POLAND 2009 – REPORT ON FOREIGN TRADE
3 SIGNIFICANT CHANGES IN TURNOVER IN 2008
In 2008 export reached the value of EUR 116.2 billion. At the same time its growth rate (14.1%) was
slower by 1.7 percentage point than a year earlier – and slower by 4.2 percentage points from the
growth of import. As a result, trade deficit deepened significantly, by almost EUR 7.7 billion, reaching
the total level of EUR 26.2 billion.
The 2008 deficit was caused primarily by negative trade balance with Asian countries, even though
their share during the past three years was decreasing gradually, from 94.6% in 2006 and 85.2% in
2007 to 78.3% in 2008. The overall trade deficit with Asian markets reached in 2008 the level of EUR
20.5 billion, compared to EUR 15.9 billion in 2007. The largest part was attributed to exchange with
China, where the negative trade balance deepened further in 2008, by EUR 2.7 billion, to the level of
EUR 10.6 billion. A significant increase of deficit was seen also in trade with the Republic of Korea (by
EUR 0.7 billion, to EUR 3.3 billion) and with Japan (close by EUR 0.6 billion, to EUR 2.7 billion).
Export to the EU rose by 12.6%, and import by 14.2%. This means that in the commodities exchange
with the EU, the tendency of import prevailing over export, started in 2007, was maintained. In 2008, the
difference between these two streams dropped from 4.2 percentage points to 1.6 percentage points in
2008. Surplus in trade exchange with the EU was reduced by almost EUR 0.8 billion, to EUR 2.3 billion.
Trade deficit in exchange with North American markets deepened for another consecutive year (by over
EUR 0.3 billion, reaching the level of almost EUR 1.3 billion).
Deficit increased significantly also in exchange with markets of the CIS. A year earlier, it was reduced by
about EUR 1 billion in comparison to 2006, but in 2008 it rose again by almost EUR 2.3 billion, to the
level of over EUR 5.5 billion. This was caused by the record-high growth of prices of crude energy
materials imported from Russia (the negative balance in trade of mineral products deepened by EUR
2.4 billion, to EUR 10.2 billion in 2008). This was also due to the significant reduction of Polish export to
Ukraine – which in the previous years was growing dynamically. In 2006, its growth exceeded 50%, and
in 2007 reached 27%, while in 2008 – only 7.7%. Meanwhile, import from this market rose by over 27%,
which was more than 9 percentage points faster than in 2007. This reversed the tendency, which
started in 2003, of export to Ukraine growing faster than import from that market. As a result, the trade
surplus with this market, that was increasing systematically since 2003, was maintained in 2008 on a
level almost identical as a year earlier, which was about EUR 2.8 billion.
The overall export of food and agriculture products rose by 15.9%, or by EUR 1.6 billion, to the total
level of almost EUR 11.7 billion, and the surplus in these commodities was reduced by EUR 604 million,
to EUR 1.4 billion.
In the trade of mineral products, the growth of export (by 26.2%) was smaller by 8.1 percentage points
than the growth of import. In consequence, turnover deficit rose by EUR 3.4 billion, to the total level of
EUR 12.4 billion. Despite a slight reduction of the petroleum oil import volume (by almost 100 thousand
tons), expenses for its import rose in 2008 by almost EUR 2 billion. This was due to the significant
increase of petroleum prices (by as much as EUR 95/ton). In 2008 the expenses for import of gas also
MINISTRY OF ECONOMY
28
increased (by about EUR 1.3 billion), primarily due to an increase in prices (by EUR 103/thousand m3,
to about EUR 316/ thousand m3), but also due to a higher import volume (by about 1 billion m3)6.
Export of base metals and products of base metal (section XV) rose by 11.5% (which was 5.9
percentage points slower than a year earlier). Import rose by 5.3%, compared to an almost 28% growth
in 2007. Such significant reduction of the import of metallurgy products was caused by the slower import
of iron, cast iron and steel (from growth of 37.2% in 2007 to 9.6% in 2008), as well as of aluminum and
aluminum products (from growth of 18.4% in 2007 to decrease of import by 6.7% in 2008). This
translated into a reduction of deficit in this group of commodities by slightly over EUR 0.7 billion, to the
total level of almost EUR 1 billion.
In the most important commodities group in the Polish foreign trade – that is, in the electromechanical
products – export growth reached 15.8% which was 2.5 percentage points slower than the growth of
import. In consequence, the deficit of exchange in these commodities rose by almost EUR 1.7 billion, to
about EUR 4.8 billion. The deepening of deficit was influenced the most by its growth in section
XVI – mechanical and electrical appliances (by almost EUR 1.5 billion, to more than EUR 5.6 billion).
In this section, growth of export reached 13.1%, and import grew by 16.2%. In section XVII – vehicles,
aircraft and vessels – the growth of import (20.6%) was faster than growth of export by 1.1 percentage
point, but nevertheless trade surplus grew by EUR 454 million, to EUR 3.6 billion.
The list of the 30 most important commodities of the Polish export (aggregated on the level of 4-
digit CN codes), which constitute almost 44% of total export, was dominated by cars, car parts and
accessories, which accounted for 10.7% of total Polish export. List of commodities, whose export
exceeded the value of EUR 1 billion, grew from 15 to 16. It included machines for automatic data
processing, whose export increased 8-fold, to EUR 1.3 billion.
6 Data from the Energy Market Agency
POLAND 2009 – REPORT ON FOREIGN TRADE
29
4 SCALE AND DYNAMICS OF COMMODITIES
TURNOVER IN 2008
4.1 Commodities turnover according to NBP data
In 2008, export7 grew by 12.7%, to the total level of EUR 119.3 billion. This means that its value
exceeded the level of EUR 100 billion for the second consecutive year, this time by as much as by EUR
19.3 billion. Import grew by 2.2 percentage points faster than export, by 14.9%, to the level of EUR
135.9 billion.
As a result, trade deficit deepened from EUR 12.4 billion in 2007 to the record-high level of EUR 16.5
billion in 2008.
Table 8 Poland’s commodities turnover in the years 2007-2008, in EUR million
2008 same period of 2007
past year = 100
same period of
past year = 100
Months
Export Import Balance
Export Import
Export Import Balance
Export Import
January 9,722 10,561 -839 123.,5 121.,3 7,869 8,706 -837 114. 5 124. 2
February 10,309 11,247 -938 129.,8 133.,7 7,940 8,415 -475 112. 8 116. 1
March 10,113 11,583 -1,470 111.,7 114.,4 9,055 10,129 -1,074 115. 6 121. 6
Q1 30,144 33,391 -3,247 121.,2 122.,5 24,864 27,250 -2,386 114. 3 120. 6
April 11,273 12,508 -1,235 135.,2 134.,9 8,340 9,272 -932 116. 0 126. 2
May 9,959 11,372 -1,413 113.,5 116.,4 8,777 9,768 -991 113. 0 115. 0
June 10,504 12,182 -1,678 120.,2 123.,2 8,739 9,889 -1,150 112. 0 121. 7
Q2 31,736 36,062 -4,326 122.,7 124.,7 25,856 28,929 -3,073 113. 6 120. 7
1st half of the
year
61,880 69,453 -7,573 122.,0 123.,6 50,720 56,179 -5,459 114. 0 120. 7
July 10,793 12,399 -1,606 124.,3 123.,5 8,683 10,041 -1,358 117. 6 125. 2
August 9,568 10,988 -1,420 110.,8 120.,1 8,635 9,152 -517 115. 7 114. 6
September 11,305 12,639 -1,334 123.,0 123.,7 9,194 10,218 -1,024 109. 0 115. 1
Q3 31,666 36,026 -4,360 119.,4 122.,5 26,512 29,411 -2,899 113. 9 118. 2
YTD after 3
quarters
93,546 105,479 -11,933 121.,1 123.,2 77,232 85,590 -8,358 113. 9 119. 8
October 10,741 12,237 -1,496 101.,9 105.,9 10,540 11,559 -1,019 115. 6 119. 7
November 8,996 10,445 -1,449 90.,5 92.,7 9,940 11,273 -1,333 111. 3 119. 8
December 6,991 8,753 -1,762 85.,8 89.,1 8,146 9,819 -1,673 108. 0 116. 6
Q4 26,728 31,435 -4,707 93.,4 96.,3 28,626 32,651 -4,025 111. 9 118. 8
Year 120,274 136,914 -16,640 113.,6 115.,8 105,858 118,241 -12,383 113. 4 119. 5
Monthly
average
10,023 11,410 -1,387 8,822 9,853 -1,032
Source: Analyses and Forecasting Department of the Ministry of Economy, on the basis of NBP data
7 Data of the National Bank of Poland, difference between annual data (presented in the text) and the sum of monthly
commodities turnover value (presented in table 9) results from other exchange rates applied to the conversion - average
monthly rates for monthly data, and quarterly rates for annual data.
MINISTRY OF ECONOMY
30
Table 9 Turnover in goods and services and the current account balance, as well as their value per capita
and in proportion to the GDP in the years 2001-2008
Ratio/ data 2001 2002 2003 2004 2005 2006 2007 2008
in billion PLN
GDP 779.6 808.6 843.2 924.5 983.3 1 060.0 1 176.7 1 271.7
export of goods 170.6 190.5 237.3 297.7 312.0 363.8 400.2 420.8
Import of goods 201.9 220.1 259.5 318.4 321.0 385.4 446.8 479.4
Balance of commodities exchange -31.3 -29.5 -22.3 -20.8 -9.0 -21.6 -46.6 -58.6
Export of services 40.0 40.9 43.5 48.7 52.7 63.7 79.0 84.6
Import of services 36.7 37.5 41.4 48.7 50.4 61.5 66.2 71.9
Balance of services 3.3 3.4 2.0 0.0 2.4 2.2 12.8 12.7
Export of goods and services 210.6 231.4 280.7 346.4 364.7 427.5 479.2 505.5
Import of goods and services 238.6 257.5 301.0 367.1 371.3 446.8 513.0 551.3
Balance of goods and services -28.0 -26.1 -20.2 -20.7 -6.7 -19.3 -33.8 -45.9
Current account balance -21.8 -20.4 -17.9 -37.6 -12.0 -28.9 -55.0 -69.2
Proportion to GDP in %
Export of goods / GDP 21.9 23.6 28.1 32.2 31.7 34.3 34.0 33.1
Export of goods and services / GDP 27.0 28.6 33.3 37.5 37.1 40.3 40.7 39.7
Import of goods / GDP 25.9 27.2 30.8 34.4 32.6 36.4 38.0 37.7
Import of goods and services / GDP 30.6 31.9 35.7 39.7 37.8 42.2 43.6 43.4
Balance of commodities exchange/
GDP -4.0 -3.7 -2.6 -2.2 -0.9 -2.0 -4.0 -4.6
Balance of goods and services / GDP -3.6 -3.2 -2.4 -2.2 -0.7 -1.8 -2.9 -3.6
Current account balance/ GDP -2.8 -2.5 -2.1 -4.1 -1.2 -2.7 -4.7 -5.4
per capita in thousand PLN
Export of goods per capita 4.5 5.0 6.2 7.8 8.2 9.5 10.5 11.0
Import of goods per capita 5.3 5.8 6.8 8.3 8.4 10.1 11.7 12.6
Export of goods and services per
capita 5.5 6.1 7.3 9.1 9.6 11.2 12.6 13.3
Import of goods and services per
capita 6.2 6.7 7.9 9.6 9.7 11.7 13.5 14.5
Current accounts balance per capita -0.6 -0.5 -0.5 -1.0 -0.3 -0.8 -1.4 -1.8
in billion EUR
GDP 212.5 209.7 191.7 203.9 244.3 272.1 310.6 362.1
export of goods 46.5 49.3 53.8 65.8 77.6 93.4 105.9 119.3
Import of goods 55.1 57.0 58.9 70.4 79.8 98.9 118.3 135.9
Balance of commodities exchange -8.6 -7.7 -5.1 -4.6 -2.2 -5.5 -12.4 -16.5
Export of services 10.9 10.5 9.9 10.8 13.1 16.4 20.9 24.0
Import of services 10.0 9.7 9.4 10.8 12.5 15.8 17.5 20.4
Balance of services 0.9 0.9 0.4 0.0 0.6 0.6 3.4 3.5
Export of goods and services 57.5 59.9 63.7 76.7 90.7 109.8 126.8 143.3
Import of goods and services 65.1 66.7 68.3 81.2 92.3 114.7 135.8 156.3
Balance of goods and services -7.7 -6.8 -4.6 -4.5 -1.7 -5.0 -9.0 -13.0
Current account balance -6.0 -5.4 -4.1 -8.2 -3.0 -7.4 -14.6 -19.5
Proportion to GDP in %
Export of goods / GDP 21.9 23.5 28.1 32.3 31.8 34.3 34.1 33.0
Export of goods and services / GDP 27.0 28.6 33.2 37.6 37.1 40.3 40.8 39.6
Import of goods / GDP 25.9 27.2 30.7 34.5 32.7 36.4 38.1 37.5
Import of goods and services / GDP 30.6 31.8 35.6 39.8 37.8 42.2 43.7 43.2
Balance of commodities exchange/
GDP -4.0 -3.7 -2.6 -2.2 -0.9 -2.0 -4.0 -4.6
Balance of goods and services / GDP -3.6 -3.3 -2.4 -2.2 -0.7 -1.8 -2.9 -3.6
Current account balance/ GDP -2.8 -2.6 -2.1 -4.0 -1.2 -2.7 -4.7 -5.4
per capita in thousand EUR
Export of goods per capita 1.2 1.3 1.4 1.7 2.0 2.4 2.8 3.1
Import of goods per capita 1.4 1.5 1.5 1.8 2.1 2.6 3.1 3.6
Export of goods and services per
capita 1.5 1.6 1.7 2.0 2.4 2.9 3.3 3.8
Import of goods and services per
capita 1.7 1.7 1.8 2.1 2.4 3.0 3.6 4.1
Current accounts balance per capita -0.2 -0.1 -0.1 -0.2 -0.1 -0.2 -0.4 -0.5
Source: Analyses and Forecasting Department of the Ministry of Economy, on the basis of NBP data.
POLAND 2009 – REPORT ON FOREIGN TRADE
31
2008 was another year of rapidly rising deficit in commodities exchange. In the years 2000-2005, deficit
was being systematically reduced – to the level of EUR 2.2 billion (from EUR 14.1 billion in 1999), but
during the past years the tendency was reversed and as a result, deficit deepened again, reaching EUR
5.5 billion in 2006, EUR 12.4 billion in 2007 and EUR 16.5 billion in 2008.
In 2008, the trade balance accounted for almost 85% of the current account deficit, and thus for the
worsening of its proportion to the GDP.
Chart 9 Proportion of the current account balance to the GDP in %
-20.0
-15.0
-10.0
-5.0
0.0
2001 2002 2003 2004 2005 2006 2007 2008
EUR billion
Commodities exchange balance
Current account balance
-6.00
-5.00
-4.00
-3.00
-2.00
-1.00
0.00
2001 2002 2003 2004 2005 2006 2007 2008
%
Commodities exchange balance/GDP
Current account balance/GDP
Source: Analyses and Forecasting Department of the Ministry of Economy, on the basis of data of the NBP and Eurostat.
4.2 Commodities turnover according to CSO data
In 2008 export grew by 14.1%, reaching the value of EUR 116.2 billion. Its growth rate was slower by
1.7 percentage point than a year earlier – and slower by 4.2 percentage points from the growth of
import. Import measured in EUR rose by 18.3%, reaching the level of EUR 142.4 billion. Its growth rate
in 2008 was slower by 1.2 percentage point than in 2007. As a result, the deficit of commodities
exchange rose from almost EUR -18.6 to the record level of EUR 26.2 billion.
Chart 10 Growth rate of export and import measured in euro and $ in the years 2007-2008 (in % compared
to the same month of the previous year)
70
80
90
100
110
120
130
140
150
160
I II III IV V VI VII VIII IX X XI XII I II III IV V VI VII VIII IX X XI XII
2007 2008
%
export in EUR export in USD import in EUR import in USD
Source: Analyses and Forecasting Department of the Ministry of Economy, on the basis of data of the CSO.
MINISTRY OF ECONOMY
32
Commodities exchange measured in US dollars grew much faster - by 23.8% in export and 28.2%
in import. Export denominated in US dollars reached the level of $ 171.9 billion and turned out to be
5.4 times higher than in 2000. Import rose by almost 10 percentage points faster than import measured
in euro. Its value was also 3.4 times higher than in 2000. The trade deficit measured in US dollars rose
by as much as EUR 13.2 billion, to the level of EUR 38.6 billion.
Table 10 Commodities turnover according to CSO data in the years 2007-2008
million EUR Dynamics in %
same period of past
year = 100
million USD Dynamics in %
same period of past
year = 100
period
Export Import Balance Export Import Export Import Balance Export Import
January 7 759 9 026 -1 267 115.4 122.5 10 257 11 933 -1 675 134.6 140.3
February 7 676 8 642 -967 111.6 115.0 9 985 11 242 -1 257 127.4 127.6
March 8 795 10 348 -1 552 113.4 120.8 11 560 13 601 -2 040 125.0 130.9
Q1 24 230 28 016 -3 786 113.4 119.5 31 803 36 776 -4 973 128.7 132.7
April 7 911 9 348 -1 437 116.1 125.4 10 522 12 433 -1 911 128.5 136.9
May 8 424 9 919 -1 495 111.6 113.7 11 454 13 487 -2 033 126.1 125.9
June 8 474 10 137 -1 663 110.7 120.8 11 379 13 613 -2 234 117.2 125.9
Q2 24 809 29 404 -4 595 112.7 119.7 33 356 39 533 -6 177 123.7 129.1
1st half of the
year
49 038 57 419 -8 381 113.1 119.6 65 159 76 309 -11 150 126.1 130.9
July 8,322 10,219 -1,896 117.0 123.3 11,169 13,714 -2,545 129.9 134.6
August 8,423 9,478 -1,056 114.9 113.4 11,612 13,067 -1,455 134.5 131.4
September 8,785 10,331 -1,546 108.2 113.7 11,876 13,967 -2,092 112.5 118.0
Q3 25,530 30,028 -4,498 113.1 116.7 34,656 40,749 -6,092 124.7 127.5
3 quarters 74,568 87,447 -12,879 113.1 118.6 99,815 117,058 -17,242 125.6 129.7
October 10,058 11,627 -1,569 113.6 117.7 14,051 16,247 -2,196 130.3 132.0
November 9,611 11,474 -1,863 113.1 115.4 13,669 16,314 -2,645 132.5 140.6
December 7,602 9,841 -2,239 108.6 115.3 11,250 14,554 -3,304 124.8 128.0
Q4 27,271 32,942 -5,672 112.0 116.2 38,970 47,115 -8,145 129.4 133.6
year 2007 101,839 120,389 -18,551 112.8 117.9 138,785 164,172 -25,387 126.6 130.7
Monthly
average
8,487 10,033 -1,546 11,565 13,681 -2,116
January 9,280 10,941 -1,662 119.6 121.2 13,363 15,764 -2,401 130.3 132.1
February 9,758 11,472 -1,714 127.1 132.7 14,239 16,736 -2,497 142.6 148.9
March 9,575 11,827 -2,252 108.9 114.3 14,171 17,484 -3,313 122.6 128.6
Q1 28,613 34,240 -5,627 118.1 122.2 41,772 49,984 -8,212 131.3 135.9
April 10,601 12,589 -1,987 134.0 134.7 16,708 19,817 -3,109 158.8 159.4
May 9,590 11,749 -2,159 113.8 118.5 15,311 18,754 -3,443 133.7 139.1
June 10,095 12,594 -2,499 119.1 124.2 15,871 19,809 -3,938 139.5 145.5
Q2 30,286 36,931 -6,646 122.1 125.6 47,891 58,380 -10,490 143.6 147.7
1st half of the
year
58,898 71,171 -12,273 120.1 124.0 89,663 108,364 -18,701 137.6 142.0
July 10,027 12,391 -2,365 120.5 121.3 15,615 19,278 -3,663 139.8 140.6
August 9,268 11,390 -2,123 110.0 120.2 14,490 17,873 -3,383 124.8 136.8
September 11,105 13,349 -2,244 126.4 129.2 16,219 19,554 -3,335 136.6 140.0
Q3 30,399 37,130 -6,731 119.1 123.7 46,323 56,704 -10,381 133.7 139.2
3 quarters 89,298 108,301 -19,004 119.8 123.8 135,986 165,069 -29,082 136.2 141.0
October 11,170 13,543 -2,373 111.1 116.5 15,746 19,084 -3,338 112.1 117.5
November 8,738 10,942 -2,204 90.9 95.4 11,237 14,110 -2,872 82.2 86.5
December 7,038 9,662 -2,624 92.6 98.2 8,891 12,216 -3,326 79.0 83.9
Q4 26,946 34,147 -7,201 98.8 103.7 35,874 45,410 -9,536 92.1 96.4
year 2008 116,244 142,448 -26,204 114.1 118.3 171,860 210,479 -38,619 123.8 128.2
Monthly
average
9,687 11,871 -2,184 14,322 17,540 -3,218
Source: Analyses and Forecasting Department of the Ministry of Economy, on the basis of data of the CSO.
During the past two years, similarly as in the years 2002-2005, the import and export denominated in
US dollars grew quicker than those measured in euro. It is worth noting that in the years 2000-2005,
measured both in euro and US dollars, the annual growth rate of export was faster than the growth of
import, while in 2006 this tendency reversed.
POLAND 2009 – REPORT ON FOREIGN TRADE
5 CHANGES IN THE GEOGRAPHICAL STRUCTURE OF
COMMODITIES EXCHANGE
5.1 Changes seen from the continental perspective
From the beginning of the decade, the geographical structure of Poland’s foreign trade analyzed from
the continental perspective has undergone serious changes. In export, the European countries remain
the dominant trade partner, and their share increased from 89.9% in 2000 to 91.1% in 2008. The value
of export to European countries rose during the said period from EUR 30.9 billion to EUR 105.9 billion.
Increase of share of these countries occurred primarily at the cost of countries of North and South
America (from 4.9% to 2.9%, that is, EUR 1.7 billion and EUR 3.4 billion, respectively), which in 2004
lost their second place to Asian countries (increase of share in total Poland’s turnover from 3.8% to
4.7%). The value of export to Asian countries rose from EUR 1.3 billion in 2000 to EUR 5.4 billion in
2008. Fourth place in this ranking, similarly as in the beginning of the decade, belongs to African
countries which in 2008 absorbed Polish goods worth EUR 1 billion, which accounted for less than 1%
of total Polish export.
Even more pronounced changes during that period were seen in the geographical structure of import.
Similarly as in export, import is also dominated by European countries, however, their share suffered a
visible decrease, from 82.0% in 2000 to 76% in 2008. This occurred despite a 2.5 fold increase in value
of import from these countries – from EUR 43.6 billion to EUR 108.3 billion. The second largest supplier
of goods to Poland are Asian countries, which strengthened their position. Import from this region rose
during that period almost 4.5 times - from EUR 5.8 billion in 2000 to EUR 20.6 billion in 2008 – which
means that their share in total Polish import rose from 11% to 18.2%. In 2008 the third place in import to
Poland, with share of 4.1%, belonged to countries from both the American continents (decline of share
from 6.1% in 2000); and the fourth one to African countries, with share of 0.8% (increase of share from
0.6% in 2000).
These trends led to significant changes in geographical structure of the commodities exchange balance.
In 2000 a large deficit was recorded in the trade with European countries, amounting to EUR 12.7
billion, which at that time constituted 67.6% of total Poland’s trade deficit. In the subsequent years, the
deficit was reduced and in 2006 was transformed into a surplus of over EUR 1.5 billion. In 2007, the
surplus dropped to EUR 0.6 billion. In 2008, trade with European countries again brought deficit of EUR
2.4 billion. In the trade with Asia, due to significant increase in import, the negative balance grew from
EUR 4.5 billion in 2000 (24.1% of total deficit) to EUR 20.5 billion in 2008 (78.3% of total deficit). During
the analyzed period, the negative balance in trade with North and South America also deepened (from
EUR 1.6 billion to EUR 2.4 billion).
MINISTRY OF ECONOMY
34
5.2 Changes among the main groups of countries
The Polish export is dominated by markets of developed countries. Their share in Poland’s export rose
from 76.3% in 2000 to 83% in 2008. From among this group of countries, the largest portion of Polish
export is taken up by the European Union. Its share rose since 2000 by almost 8 percentage points,
reaching 77.8% in 2008, which was caused primarily by the enlargement of the EU by the countries of
Central and Eastern Europe.
Since 1999, export to developed countries grew faster than import. However, this tendency reversed in
2007. In 2006, a trade surplus of EUR 3 billion was recorded in exchange with this group of countries. A
year later this surplus shrank significantly, to only EUR 32.5 million. Import grew faster than export in
2008, which resulted in a deficit in the trade with developed countries, on a level exceeding EUR 2.2
billion. This was influenced the most by the falling surplus in trade exchange with the EU (by almost
EUR 0.8 billion, to EUR 2.3 billion); and the deepening deficit in exchange with Japan (by EUR 0.6
billion) and with the USA (by over 0.4 billion). In 2008 the exchange with EFTA countries resulted in
transformation of the 2007 surplus in the amount of EUR 110 million into a deficit of EUR 500 million.
This resulted primarily from reduced surplus in trade with Norway (by almost EUR 0.5 billion, to EUR
32.6 million); and deepening deficit in trade with Switzerland (by EUR 100 million, to almost EUR 0.6
billion).
In trade with the USA, almost all commodity sections showed a reduction of balance, and the largest
deficit was seen in the trade of mineral products (by about EUR 200 million); and electromechanical
products (by about EUR 120 million).
In trade with Japan, deficit increased primarily due to the growing negative trade balance in
electromechanical industry products (by over EUR 540 million).
2008 saw an increase of the CIS countries in the total import into Poland. Import from this group of
countries is dominated by crude energy materials, mainly petroleum oil and natural gas. The record-high
prices of these crude materials in H1 of 2008 caused the share of CIS countries in total Polish import to
rise by 1.2 percentage point, to 12.4%. Export to these markets developed relatively dynamically,
achieving a growth of 18.9%. As a result, their total share in Polish export rose by almost 0.5
percentage points, to 10.5%.
In the trade with other markets, primarily with China, a further deepening of deficit was seen. The share
of developing countries (excluding the CIS) in the Polish commodities turnover, both in export and
import, rose in 2008 by 0.6 percentage point, reaching 6.5% and 18.3%, respectively. The strongest
influence on the negative tendencies in the balance of exchange with these markets was exerted by the
rising deficit in trade with China (by about EUR 2.7 billion), and with the Republic of Korea (by about
EUR 710 million). The total deficit of turnover with developing markets (without CIS) amounted in 2008
to EUR 18.4 billion, and accounted for over 70% of the total deficit in commodities exchange.
POLAND 2009 – REPORT ON FOREIGN TRADE
35
Table 11 Changes in the geographical structure of Poland’s commodities turnover (in EUR million)
2008 2007 Changes 2008/2007
Export Import Balance Export Import Balance
Export
growth
(+)
decline
(-)
Import
growth
(+)
decline
(-)
Balance
improved
(+)
worsened
(-)
Poland, total 116,243.8 142,447.9 -26,204.1 101,838.7 120,389.4 -18,550.8 14,405.1 22,058.4 -7,653.3
previous year = 100 114.1 118.3 115.8 119.5
Developed countries 96,485.0 98,721.3 -2,236.2 85,601.5 85,569.0 32.5 10,883.6 13,152.3 -2,268.8
previous year = 100 112.7 115.4 114.9 119.8
Share
including:
83.0 69.3 84.1 71.1
EU 90,457.0 88,171.1 2,285.9 80,316.0 77,240.0 3,076.0 10,141.0 10,931.1 -790.1
previous year = 100 112.6 114.2 115.7 120.1
Share
including:
77.8 61.9 78.9 64.2
Germany 29,124.1 32,755.2 -3,631.1 26,370.1 28,947.8 -2,577.7 2,754.0 3,807.4 -1,053.4
previous year = 100 110.4 113.2 110.5 119.9
Share 25.1 23.0 25.9 24.0
France 7,210.4 6,723.4 486.9 6,202.7 6,153.0 49.8 1,007.6 570.4 437.2
previous year = 100 116.2 109.3 113.1 111.2
Share 6.2 4.7 6.1 5.1
Italy 6,942.6 9,260.5 -2,317.9 6,724.0 8,251.8 -1,527.8 218.6 1,008.7 -790.1
previous year = 100 103.3 112.2 116.9 120.5
Share 6.0 6.5 6.6 6.9
United Kingdom 6,700.0 4,040.5 2,659.5 6,050.2 3,746.5 2,303.7 649.7 293.9 355.8
previous year = 100 110.7 107.8 118.9 128.1
Share 5.8 2.8 5.9 3.1
Czech Republic 6,630.7 5,073.6 1,557.1 5,641.9 4,165.4 1,476.5 988.8 908.2 80.6
previous year = 100 117.5 121.8 115.8 118.4
Share 5.7 3.6 5.5 3.5
Other developed
countries 6,028.0 10,550.2 -4,522.2 5,285.5 8,329.0 -3,043.5 742.6 2,221.2 -1,478.6
previous year = 100 114.0 126.7 104.1 117.4
Share
including:
5.2 7.4 5.2 6.9
USA 1,688.7 3,135.0 -1,446.3 1,508.1 2,537.0 -1,028.9 180.7 598.1 -417.4
previous year = 100 112.0 123.6 89.6 114.1
Share 1.5 2.2 1.5 2.1
EFTA 2,891.4 3,391.7 -500.3 2,647.9 2,537.1 110.7 243.6 854.6 -611.0
previous year = 100 109.2 133.7 108.6 104.5
Share 2.5 2.4 2.6 2.1
Developing countries 19,758.7 43,726.6 -23,967.9 16,237.2 34,820.5 -18,583.3 3,521.5 8,906.1 -5,384.6
previous year = 100 121.7 125.6 121.0 118.9
Share
including:
17.0 30.7 15.9 28.9
Countries of the CIS 12,155.6 17,714.9 -5,559.3 10,227.2 13,492.4 -3,265.2 1,928.4 4,222.4 -2,294.1
previous year = 100 118.9 131.3 123.7 108.3
Share
including:
10.5 12.4 10.0 11.2
Russia 6,049.6 13,877.2 -7,827.6 4,706.8 10,499.1 -5,792.3 1,342.8 3,378.1 -2,035.3
previous year = 100 128.5 132.2 125.2 107.8
Share 5.2 9.7 4.6 8.7
Other countries 7,603.1 26,011.7 -18,408.6 6,009.9 21,328.0 -15,318.1 1,593.2 4,683.7 -3,090.5
previous year = 100 126.5 122.0 116.7 126.7
Share
including:
6.5 18.3 5.9 17.7
China 866.5 11,465.9 -10,599.4 721.4 8,599.4 -7,878.0 145.1 2,866.5 -2,721.4
previous year = 100 120.1 133.3 118.9 139.4
Share 0.7 8.0 0.7 7.1
Source: Analyses and Forecasting Department of the Ministry of Economy, on the basis of data of the CSO.
MINISTRY OF ECONOMY
36
5.3 The European Union
The European Union, after accession of Romania and Bulgaria (in January 2007) further strengthened
its position of the dominant trade partner of Poland. The share of the “old EU” (EU 15) in the total Polish
export dropped from 62.9% in 2007 to 61.6% in 2008. Meanwhile, the share of the new EU markets (EU
9+2) rose slightly (by 0.3 percentage point) to 16.3% in 2008. The largest share reduction applied to
Germany – by 0.8 percentage point, to 25.1% - and to Italy – by 0.6 percentage point, to 6%. The share
of Slovakia rose the most, by 0.3 percentage point, to 2.5%.
The European Union controls also a significant portion of the Polish import, although its share in 2008
(totaling 61.9%) turned out to be smaller by 2.3 percentage points than in 2007. This meant a reduction
of EU 15 markets in import to Poland from almost 55% in 2007 to 52.8% in 2008. The share of the new
Member Countries (EU 9+2) remained on a similar level of 9.1%.
In 2008, Poland exported to the EU markets goods worth a total of more than EUR 90.4 billion. The
value of import from these markets reached EUR 88.2 billion.
Among the 15 countries which are the largest recipients of Polish export, 13 are EU members. In import,
10 of the largest sellers to Poland come from the EU.
The largest increase of export to EU markets, measured in absolute values, was obtained in exchange
with:
Germany by EUR 2.8 billion (10.4%),
France by EUR 1 billion (16.2%),
Czech Republic by almost EUR 1 billion (17.5%),
the Netherlands by EUR 0.8 billion (20%),
United Kingdom by over EUR 0.6 billion (10.7%)
Among products with the largest growth of export to the European Union, the leaders are:
products of the electromechanical industry by EUR 4.3 billion (12.7%),
products of the chemical industry by EUR 1.7 billion (19.4%),
agricultural and food products by EUR 1.3 billion (16.5%),
metallurgy products by EUR 1.2 billion (11.2%).
Polish export to the EU markets, measured in euro, rose in 2008 by 12.6%, which was 1.5 percentage
point slower than the overall growth of export, and 1.6 percentage point slower than the growth of import
from the EU (increase by 14.2%). This means that the tendency for import from the EU rising faster than
export to these markets, which appeared in 2007, was maintained.
As a result, the surplus in trade with the EU dropped by EUR 790 million, to EUR 2.3 billion. In the case
of the “old” EU states, deficit rose by EUR 1.7 billion, to EUR 3.6 billion in 2008, while in turnover with
EU 9+2 the surplus amounted to EUR 5.9 billion, and was higher by EUR 0.9 billion from last year’s
result.
The overall result of exchange with countries of the European Union was significantly worsened by the
financial and economic crisis suffered by Poland’s most important economic partners, and especially
Germany. The growth rate of Polish export to this market remained on an almost identical level as in the
previous year, that is 10.4% (in 2007, it amounted to 10.5%); and import from Germany fell from 19.6%
in 2007 to 13.2% in 2008. Similarly as a year earlier, measured in absolute values import from Germany
POLAND 2009 – REPORT ON FOREIGN TRADE
37
rose (by EUR 3.8 billion) much more than export to this market (growth by EUR 2.8 billion). As a result,
trade deficit from 2007 deepened from EUR 2.6 billion to the level of EUR 3.6 billion in 2008.
A worsening of situation was seen in trade with 10 countries of the EU, including nine countries from UE
15 and one from EU 9+2. Deficit in exchange with Italy grew significantly (by about EUR 790 million, to
EUR 2.3 billion in 2008). The same applied to Finland (increase by EUR 284 million, to over EUR 1.1
billion). In 2008, for the first time since 2004, deficit was recorded in trade with Spain (in the amount of
EUR 170 million), where in 2007 a surplus of EUR 375 million was noted. Trade balance improved in
exchange with 16 countries of the EU, especially with France (by EUR 437 million, to EUR 487 million in
2008); United Kingdom (by EUR 356 million, to almost EUR 2.7 billion) and with Hungary (by EUR 280
million, to EUR 704 million).
5.4 Commonwealth of Independent States
In 2007, turnover with countries of the CIS brought a reduction of deficit by about EUR 1 billion in
comparison to 2006, but in 2008 it rose again by almost EUR 2.3 billion, to the level of over EUR 5.5
billion. This was caused by the record-high growth of prices of crude energy materials imported from
Russia (the negative balance in trade of mineral products deepened by EUR 2.4 billion, to EUR 10.2
billion in 2008).
In 2008, the relation between the growth rates of export and import was reversed. In 2008, growth rate
of export to the CIS was the lowest in 5 years and reached 18.9%. Meanwhile, import from the CIS rose
by over 31%, while a year earlier the growth reached 8.3%.
As a result, share of these markets in the overall import to Poland rose from 11.2% in 2007 to 12.4% in
2008, and in export from 10% to 10.5% in 2008. From among countries of the CIS, the largest portion of
import to Poland is attributed to Russia, Ukraine and Belarus. Their total share in Polish import from the
CIS reached 92.3% (of which Russia - about 78%, Ukraine - about 9% and Belarus – 5%). Their share
in the Polish export to the CIS was a little higher, reaching 94.5%. Situation in exchange with each of
these countries was different.
In 2008, the trade balance with Russia worsened significantly. The deficit which in 2007 amounted to
EUR 5.8 billion deepened further, by about EUR 2 billion, to over EUR 7.8 billion in 2008. This
worsening was caused by the significant acceleration of import from the Russia market, which rose by
32.2% (by almost EUR 3.4 billion), which was about 24 percentage points faster than in 2007. Export to
this market rose by only 3.3. percentage points faster than a year earlier (by 28.5%, and by more than
EUR 1.3 billion).
Import from Russia was traditionally dominated by mineral products, whose share was similar as in
2007, reaching a little over 74%. In the case of metallurgy products, a decrease of import share was
seen by 2.2 percentage points, to the level of 3.9% in 2008.
Polish export to the Russian market was dominated by products of the electromechanical industry,
whose share grew by 8.5 percentage points, to 44.3%. The chemical industry and the agriculture and
food products recorded a decline of their share, by 2 percentage points to 18.7% and by 1.7 percentage
point to 8%, respectively. It is worth noting that trade deficit with Russia, amounting to EUR 7.8 billion,
constituted 30% of the total deficit of Poland’s foreign trade in 2008.
MINISTRY OF ECONOMY
38
In 2008, export to Ukraine – which in the previous years was growing dynamically – was significantly
reduced. In 2006, its growth exceeded 50%, and in 2007 reached 27%, while in 2008 – only 7.7%.
Meanwhile, import from this market rose by over 27%, which was more than 9 percentage points faster
than in 2007. This reversed the tendency, which started in 2003, of export to Ukraine growing faster
than import from that market. As a result, the trade surplus with this market, increasing systematically
since 2003, was maintained in 2008 on a level almost identical as a year earlier, which was about EUR
2.8 billion.
From among all commodities groups traded with Ukraine, the balance was the worst in the dominant
import of metallurgy products – decrease of surplus by EUR 110 million to EUR 13.4 million in 2008.
5.5 China and the Republic of Korea
The 2008 deficit was caused primarily by negative trade balance with Asian countries, even though their
share during the past three years was decreasing gradually, from 94.6% in 2006 and 85.2% in 2007 to
78.3% in 2008. However, deficit measured in absolute values grew from EUR 15.9 billion to EUR 20.5
billion in 2008.
The largest part of this deficit was attributed to exchange with China (negative trade balance deepened
further in 2008, by EUR 2.7 billion, to the level of EUR 10.6 billion). A significant deepening of deficit
was seen also in exchange with Republic of Korea (by EUR 0.7 billion, to EUR 3.3 billion), and Japan
(by almost EUR 0.6 billion, to EUR 2.7 billion).
In 2008, the share of China in total Polish import rose by about 1 percentage point to 8%, and its share
in export was maintained on a level similar to last year’s and reached about 0.7%. Growth of deficit was
caused by significant rise in import, with much slower export growth. Import from China rose by 33.3%,
or by EUR 2.9 billion, to EUR 11.5 billion in 2008, while export during that period grew by 20.1%, which
was only EUR 145 million, to almost EUR 0.9 billion. Thus, deficit in trade with only one counterpart
accounted for 40% of total deficit of Poland’s foreign trade in 2008.
The largest increase of import from China was seen in the group of electromechanical goods (by 41.8%,
or EUR 1.9 billion), and products of the light industry (37.1%, or EUR 431 million). Deficit of commercial
exchange with China worsened in almost all groups of commodities (with the exception of metallurgy
products, where it was reduced by EUR 43 million, to EUR 600 million).
2008 was another year of deteriorating situation in trade with Republic of Korea. Growth of import from
this market reached 25.3% (in absolute terms, growth by EUR 0.7 billion, to EUR 3.5 billion in 2008).
The dynamic growth of import caused further deepening of exchange with this country, which combined
with the deficit in trade with China accounted for 53% of the total deficit of Poland’s foreign trade in
2008.
POLAND 2009 – REPORT ON FOREIGN TRADE
39
6 CHANGES IN THE COMMODITY STRUCTURE
In 2008, both in export and in import, the basic tendencies observed over the past five years remained
in place in almost all commodities groups.
Positive changes in export structure are expressed by the stronger position of electromechanical
products, whose share during that period rose by 4 percentage points, to 43% in 2008. During the past
5 years, the following categories increased their share in total Polish export: chemical products (by 2
percentage points, to 12%), food and agricultural products (by 2 percentage points, to 10%), and
metallurgy products (by 2 percentage points, to 13%).
In import, the largest reductions applied to the share of electromechanical products (by 2 percentage
points, to 38%), chemical products (by 2 percentage points, to 16%); and the largest increase was seen
in mineral products (by 2 percentage points, to 12%).
In the other groups of commodities, changes of their share in the structure of Poland’s foreign trade
were moderate and did not exceed 1 percentage point.
Chart 11 Commodity structure of the Polish export in 2008, compared to 2007 and 2003
0 5 10 15 20 25 30 35 40 45
Leather
Ceramic products
Light industry products
Mineral products
Wood and paper industry products
Miscellaneous and unclassified goods
Agricultural and food products
Products of the chemical industry
Metalurgical products
Products of the electromechanical industry
%
2003 2007 2008
Source: Analyses and Forecasting Department of the Ministry of Economy, on the basis of data of the CSO.
MINISTRY OF ECONOMY
40
Chart 72 Commodity structure of the Polish import in 2008, compared to 2007 and 2003
0 5 10 15 20 25 30 35 40 45
Leather
Ceramic products
Wood and paper industry products
Light industry products
Miscellaneous and unclassified goods
Agricultural and food products
Metalurgical products
Mineral products
Products of the chemical industry
Products of the electromechanical industry
%
2003 2007 2008
Source: Analyses and Forecasting Department of the Ministry of Economy, on the basis of data of the CSO.
Chart 13 Commodity structure of the Polish foreign trade balance in 2008, compared to 2007 and 2003 (in
EUR million)
-13000 -9000 -5000 -1000 3000
Agricultural and food products
Wood and paper industry products
Ceramic products
Miscellaneous and unclassified goods
Leather
Metalurgical products
Light industry products
Products of the electromechanical industry
Products of the chemical industry
Mineral products
2003 2007 2008 EUR million
Source: Analyses and Forecasting Department of the Ministry of Economy, on the basis of data of the CSO.
The most important changes in the commodity structure of Poland’s foreign trade, noted over the past 5
years, included on one hand the visible deepening of deficit in the trade of mineral products, which
results from the rising prices of crude energy materials (increase of deficit from EUR 3.8 billion in 2003
to EUR 12.4 billion in 2008). The negative balance deepened strongly also in the trade of chemical
products (growth of deficit from EUR 6 billion in 2003 to EUR 8.9 billion in 2008).
Table 12 Commodity structure of Poland’s trade turnover in the years 2007-2008, in EUR million
2008 2007 Changes 2008/2007
Export Import Balance Export Import Balance Export
growth (+)
decline (-)
Import
growth (-)
decline (+)
Balance
improved
(+)
worsened
(-)
I Live animals 4,075 2,527 1,548 3,565 1,741 1,823 510 786 -276
II Plant products 2,149 3,190 -1,041 1,947 2,577 -630 202 613 -411
III Fats, oils 305 575 -270 247 389 -142 58 186 -128
IV Prepared foodstuffs 5,163 3,985 1,178 4,331 3,364 967 832 621 211
(I-IV) Agricultural and food products 11,692 10,277 1,415 10,089 8,070 2,019 1,603 2,207 -604
V Mineral products 5,256 17,625 -12,369 4,163 13,119 -8,955 1,093 4,506 -3,413
VI Products of the chemical industry 6,834 13,234 -6,399 5,346 10,648 -5,302 1,488 2,586 -1,098
VII Plastics 7,073 9,531 -2,458 6,426 8,825 -2,399 647 706 -59
(VI-VII) products of the chemical industry 13,907 22,764 -8,857 11,772 19,472 -7,700 2,135 3,292 -1,157
VIII Leathers and leather products 396 801 -406 388 801 -413 8 1 7
IX Wood and wood products 2,572 1,329 1,243 2,622 1,232 1,390 -50 97 -147
X Wood pulp 3,310 3,539 -229 2,980 3,275 -295 330 264 65
(IX-X) Wood and paper industry products 5,881 4,867 1,014 5,602 4,506 1,096 279 361 -82
XI Textiles and textile products 3,814 5,772 -1,957 3,422 5,108 -1,686 392 664 -271
XII Footwear, headgear 397 721 -324 369 576 -207 28 145 -117
(XI-XII) Light industry products 4,212 6,493 -2,281 3,791 5,684 -1,893 421 809 -388
XIII Products of stone, gypsum, cement … 2,345 1,987 358 2,310 1,774 536 35 213 -178
XIV Pearls, metals and stones 555 329 225 525 282 243 30 48 -18
(XIII-XIV) Ceramic products 2,899 2,316 583 2,835 2,055 779 65 261 -196
XV Products of non-precious metals 15,082 16,049 -967 13,529 15,235 -1,705 1,553 814 739
XVI Mechanical and electrical equipment 28,718 34,353 -5,636 25,391 29,561 -4,170 3,327 4,792 -1,465
XVII Vehicles 20,176 16,566 3,610 16,889 13,733 3,156 3,287 2,833 454
XVIII Optical devices and apparatuses, etc. 1,009 3,758 -2,749 827 2,908 -2,081 181 850 -669
(XVI-XVIII) products of the electromechanical industry 49,902 54,677 -4,775 43,107 46,202 -3,095 6,795 8,475 -1,680
XIX Weapons and ammunition 30 97 -68 49 96 -47 -19 2 -21
XX Various products 6,934 2,558 4,376 6,473 2,097 4,376 461 461 0
XXI Works of art 9 11 -2 9 6 3 0 5 -5
(XIX-XXI) Miscellaneous 6,973 2,666 4,307 6,531 2,199 4,333 441 467 -26
XXII Other 43 3,288 -3,245 30 2,040 -2,010 13 1,248 -1,235
Unknown or erroneous 0 624 -624 0 1,006 -1,006 0 -382 382
TOTAL: 116,244 142,448 -26,204 101,839 120,389 -18,551 14,405 22,058 -7,653
Source: Analyses and Forecasting Department of the Ministry of Economy, on the basis of data of the CSO.
MINISTRY OF ECONOMY
42
6.1 Changes in the commodity structure in 2008 and their
influence on trade balance
The significant deepening of deficit in commodities exchange in 2008 (by almost EUR 7.7 billion, to the
total level of EUR 26.2 billion) was caused by the worsening of balance in almost all commodities
groups. This resulted primarily from negative changes in turnover balance in the following groups of
commodities:
mineral products (section V), where the deficit increased by as much as EUR 3.4 billion, to the
total level of EUR 12.4 billion,
electromechanical products (sections: XVI, XVII and XVIII), where the deficit increased by
almost EUR 1.7 billion, to the total level close to EUR -4.8 billion,
products of the chemical industry (sections VI and VII), where the traditionally high deficit
increased further, by EUR 1.2 billion, reaching a level of almost EUR 8.9 billion,
agricultural and food products (sections I, II, III i IV), where the trade surplus was reduced by
EUR 0.6 billion, to the level of EUR 1.4 billion.
In the trade of mineral products, deficit deepened primarily due to higher value of imported crude
petroleum oil, despite the fact that its import volume dropped slightly. The decisive factor was the
record-breaking growth of petroleum prices. In 2008, expenses for the import of gas also rose, primarily
due to higher prices, but also due to a higher import volume8. The growth of import expenses in the
trade of mineral products was compounded by the dynamic increase of expenses for import of coal (by
EUR 690 million, to the level of almost EUR 1.1 billion), coupled with decline of revenues on the export
of coal (by EUR 160 million, to less than EUR 1 billion).
In the group of metallurgy products, turnover deficit was reduced by almost EUR 740 million, to less
than EUR 1 billion. This was caused primarily by the reduction of negative balance in the trade of iron,
steel and cast-iron (by almost EUR 390 million), as well as aluminum and aluminum products (by EUR
170 million). Export of iron, steel and cast-iron grew significantly in 2008 (by 28.7%, which was close to
EUR 1 billion), while import rose by 9.6% (by EUR 580 million). The fastest growth of import of
metallurgy products was noted in the case of iron, cast iron and steel was noted (by 15.2%m or almost
EUR 550 million). In the trade of copper and copper products, decreases were noted both in export (by
5.5%) and in import (by 4.3%).
In the group of electromechanical products, the changes were of opposite nature. However, their
influence on the turnover balance did not offset each other and as a result, deficit in the trade of these
goods deepened by EUR 1.7 billion, to almost EUR 4.8 billion. A relatively positive situation was seen in
the section of vehicles, aircraft and vessels, where the growth of export reached EUR 3.3 billion and
was higher by EUR 0.5 billion than the growth of import. As a result, this led to increase of surplus in
turnover of this section to EUR 3.6 billion. On the other hand, an unfavorable situation was seen in the
section of mechanical and electrical appliances, where the very clear growth of import (by EUR 4.8
billion) turned out to be higher than the growth of export (by EUR 3.3 billion). As a result, the negative
balance of this section rose by almost EUR 1.5 billion, exceeding the level of EUR 5.6 billion.
8 Detailed information on changes in the import of petroleum products follows in further sections of the report.
POLAND 2009 – REPORT ON FOREIGN TRADE
43
In the group of products of the chemical industry (sections VI and VII), the almost traditional relatively
high deficit (EUR 7.7 billion in 2007) deepened further in 2008 by EUR 1.2 billion. The growth of import
in the section of chemical products reached almost EUR 2.6 billion (to EUR 13.2 billion) and turned out
to be higher by EUR 1.1 billion from the growth of export. Such significant worsening of trade balance
resulted primarily from higher import of pharmaceutical products (increase by almost EUR 1billion,
which was EUR 0.6 billion higher than in export); as well as from the relatively high increase of import of
various chemical products (by over EUR 0.5 billion), while their export grew only slightly (under EUR 30
million). In the section of plastics, growth of export (by almost EUR 650 million) was lower than the
growth of their import, by only EUR 60 million.
Table 13 Changes in the Polish foreign trade turnover per commodities groups and sections, in EUR million
Group / section / subsection 2008 2007 Changes
Export Import Balance Export Import Balance Export
growth +
decline -
Import
growth (+)
decline (-)
Balance
improved
(+)
worsene
d
TOTAL 116,243.8 142,447.9 -26,204.1 101,838.7 120,389.4 -18,550.8 14,405.1 22,058.4 -7,653.3
I LIVE ANIMALS; ANIMAL PRODUCTS 4,075.1 2,527.4 1,547.7 3,564.7 1,741.3 1,823.4 510.4 786.1 -275.7
1 Live animals 230.7 170.0 60.7 261.3 118.6 142.7 -30.6 51.4 -82.0
2 Meat and edible variety meats 1,860.6 1,052.1 808.5 1,464.9 540.4 924.4 395.7 511.7 -116.0
3
Fish and crustaceans, mollusks and other water
invertebrates 537.2 764.6 -227.4 480.4 647.6 -167.2 56.8 117.0 -60.2
4 Dairy products, eggs, natural honey 1,315.3 317.5 997.8 1,233.7 280.8 952.9 81.6 36.7 44.9
5 Animal products n.e.c. 131.4 223.3 -91.9 124.5 154.0 -29.5 6.9 69.3 -62.4
II PLANT PRODUCTS 2,148.9 3,189.9 -1,040.9 1,946.7 2,576.8 -630.0 202.2 613.1 -410.9
6 Live trees and other plants; bulbs … 114.9 248.9 -134.0 84.4 188.4 -104.1 30.5 60.4 -29.9
7 Vegetables, certain edible roots and bulbs 748.6 413.1 335.4 679.2 370.5 308.8 69.4 42.7 26.7
8
Fruit and edible nuts, zests and skins of citrus
fruits or melons 707.1 1,035.9 -328.8 630.4 935.2 -304.8 76.7 100.7 -24.0
9 Coffee, tea, Paraguay tea and spices 146.6 296.3 -149.7 103.2 238.4 -135.2 43.4 57.9 -14.5
10 Cereals 128.7 563.4 -434.7 143.7 433.2 -289.5 -15.0 130.2 -145.2
11
Products of the milling industry; malt; starch;
inulin; wheat gluten 92.6 197.6 -105.1 74.7 157.4 -82.6 17.8 40.3 -22.4
12 Seeds of oil-bearing fruit ... 198.3 358.3 -160.0 219.5 194.8 24.7 -21.2 163.5 -184.8
13
Shellac; rubbers; resins and other plant juices
and extracts 7.4 70.9 -63.5 6.3 54.8 -48.6 1.1 16.1 -14.9
14 Plant materials for weaving … 4.8 5.4 -0.6 5.3 4.1 1.2 -0.5 1.2 -1.8
III
PLANT AND ANIMAL FATS AND OILS;
PRODUCTS OF THEIR PROCESSING 304.9 575.2 -270.3 246.7 388.8 -142.0 58.2 186.4 -128.2
15 Animal fats and oils … 304.9 575.2 -270.3 246.7 388.8 -142.0 58.2 186.4 -128.2
IV
PREPARED FOODSTUFFS; NON-ALCOHOLIC
AND ALCOHOLIC BEVERAGES , VINEGAR;
TOBACCO 5,163.3 3,984.9 1,178.4 4,331.1 3,363.6 967.5 832.2 621.4 210.9
16
Processed meat, fish, crustaceans, mollusks
and other water invertebrates 575.9 154.0 421.9 455.5 111.8 343.7 120.4 42.2 78.2
17 Sugar and sugar products 396.6 235.3 161.2 335.9 203.4 132.5 60.6 31.9 28.7
18 Cocoa and cocoa products 475.9 466.7 9.2 417.3 394.6 22.7 58.5 72.0 -13.5
19
Products of cereals, flour, starch or milk;
confectionery products 786.7 400.9 385.9 679.8 299.7 380.1 106.9 101.2 5.7
20
Processed vegetables, fruit, nuts or other plant
parts 830.3 408.7 421.6 733.4 414.0 319.4 96.9 -5.3 102.2
21 Various prepared foodstuffs 742.7 647.9 94.8 627.6 516.9 110.7 115.1 131.0 -15.9
Group / section / subsection 2008 2007 Changes
Export Import Balance Export Import Balance Export
growth +
decline -
Import
growth (+)
decline (-)
Balance
improved
(+)
worsene
d
22 Non-alcoholic and alcoholic beverages, vinegar 357.1 514.9 -157.8 305.6 427.5 -121.9 51.5 87.3 -35.9
23
Remains and waste of the food industry; ready
fodder for animals 283.7 877.3 -593.6 226.5 692.4 -465.9 57.3 184.9 -127.7
24 Tobacco and processed tobacco substitutes 714.4 279.3 435.1 549.4 303.2 246.2 165.1 -23.9 188.9
(I-IV) agricultural and food products 11,692.3 10,277.4 1,414.9 10,089.2 8,070.5 2,018.8 1,603.0 2,206.9 -603.9
V MINERAL PRODUCTS 5,256.0 17,624.8 -12,368.8 4,163.3 13,118.7 -8,955.4 1,092.7 4,506.1 -3,413.4
25
Salt; sulfur; soil and stones; gypsum materials;
lime and cement 248.1 746.7 -498.6 155.2 459.6 -304.4 92.9 287.1 -194.2
26 Metal ores; slag and ash 79.5 813.0 -733.6 135.7 710.0 -574.3 -56.3 103.0 -159.3
27
Mineral fuels, mineral oils and products of their
distillation; bitumen substances; mineral waxes 4,928.4 16,065.1 -11,136.6 3,872.4 11,949.1 -8,076.7 1,056.1 4,116.0 -3,059.9
(V) Mineral products 5,256.0 17,624.8 -12,368.8 4,163.3 13,118.7 -8,955.4 1,092.7 4,506.1 -3,413.4
VI
PRODUCTS OF THE CHEMICAL INDUSTRY
AND RELATED INDUSTRIES 6,834.1 13,233.5 -6,399.4 5,346.0 10,647.6 -5,301.6 1,488.2 2,586.0 -1,097.8
28
Inorganic chemicals; organic or inorganic
compounds of precious metals … 570.3 733.7 -163.4 424.5 577.9 -153.4 145.8 155.8 -10.0
29 Organic chemicals 991.2 2,157.8 -1,166.5 1,029.3 1,857.3 -827.9 -38.1 300.5 -338.6
30 Pharmaceutical products 1,134.6 4,261.2 -3,126.6 780.0 3,312.2 -2,532.3 354.6 948.9 -594.3
31 Fertilizers 779.7 567.6 212.1 414.4 368.0 46.4 365.3 199.6 165.7
32
Tanning agents, dyes, pigments, paints,
lacquers, putty, sealants, inks ... 465.2 1,219.8 -754.6 430.6 1,147.0 -716.3 34.6 72.8 -38.2
33
Essential oils, resinoids; perfumes, cosmetics
and toiletries 1,548.0 1,196.5 351.5 1,123.6 1,000.8 122.8 424.4 195.7 228.7
34 Soaps and laundry products … 838.0 676.5 161.5 687.8 557.5 130.2 150.2 118.9 31.3
35
Protein substances; modified starches; glues,
enzymes … 151.3 413.4 -262.0 126.2 361.6 -235.4 25.1 51.7 -26.6
36
Explosives; pyrotechnical and flammable
materials; matches … 31.9 30.4 1.5 25.0 23.5 1.4 6.9 6.9 0.1
37 Photographic and cinematographic materials 12.8 125.4 -112.5 21.3 132.9 -111.5 -8.5 -7.5 -1.0
38 Various chemical products 311.0 1,851.3 -1,540.3 283.2 1,308.8 -1,025.6 27.8 542.6 -514.8
VII
PLASTICS AND PLASTIC PRODUCTS;
CAUTCHOUC AND CAUTCHOUC PRODUCTS 7,073.2 9,530.7 -2,457.5 6,426.1 8,824.8 -2,398.8 647.1 705.9 -58.8
39 Plastics and plastic products 4,691.7 7,399.3 -2,707.5 4,198.5 6,818.0 -2,619.5 493.3 581.3 -88.0
40 Cautchouc and cautchouc products 2,381.5 2,131.5 250.0 2,227.6 2,006.9 220.8 153.9 124.6 29.2
(VI-VII) Products of the chemical industry 13,907.3 22,764.2 -8,856.9 11,772.1 19,472.4 -7,700.3 2,135.3 3,291.8 -1,156.6
VIII LEATHERS AND LEATHER PRODUCTS 395.9 801.5 -405.6 388.0 800.8 -412.8 7.9 0.7 7.2
41 Untanned leathers (with the exception of furs), 136.4 392.8 -256.5 152.2 465.5 -313.4 -15.8 -72.7 56.9
Group / section / subsection 2008 2007 Changes
Export Import Balance Export Import Balance Export
growth +
decline -
Import
growth (+)
decline (-)
Balance
improved
(+)
worsene
d
and tanned leathers
42 Leather products … 165.9 356.5 -190.6 175.1 264.5 -89.4 -9.2 92.0 -101.2
43 Furs and artificial furs, and their products 93.6 52.2 41.5 60.8 70.8 -10.0 32.9 -18.6 51.5
(VIII) Leathers and leather goods 395.9 801.5 -405.6 388.0 800.8 -412.8 7.9 0.7 7.2
IX WOOD AND WOOD PRODUCTS 2,571.8 1,328.5 1,243.3 2,622.2 1,231.8 1,390.4 -50.5 96.7 -147.1
44 Wood and wood products; charcoal 2,540.1 1,296.8 1,243.3 2,589.2 1,202.3 1,386.9 -49.1 94.5 -143.6
45 Cork and cork products 4.1 9.6 -5.5 4.7 11.0 -6.4 -0.6 -1.5 0.9
46
Goods made of straw, esparto etc.; basketry
products and wicker goods 27.6 22.2 5.4 28.4 18.5 9.8 -0.8 3.6 -4.4
X
WOOD PULP OR PULP OF OTHER FIBROUS
PLANTS 3,309.6 3,538.9 -229.3 2,980.0 3,274.6 -294.7 329.7 264.3 65.4
47 Wood pulp 79.4 327.7 -248.3 62.9 260.2 -197.2 16.5 67.5 -51.1
48
Paper, cardboard, products of paper mass,
paper and cardboard 2,678.3 2,934.5 -256.2 2,440.8 2,769.9 -329.1 237.5 164.6 72.9
49 Books, newspapers, pictures, manuscripts ... 552.0 276.7 275.2 476.3 244.6 231.7 75.7 32.1 43.5
(IX-X) Products of the wood and paper industry 5,881.4 4,867.4 1,014.0 5,602.2 4,506.5 1,095.7 279.2 361.0 -81.8
XI TEXTILES AND TEXTILE PRODUCTS 3,814.5 5,771.6 -1,957.1 3,422.0 5,107.8 -1,685.8 392.4 663.7 -271.3
50 Silk 3.9 18.9 -15.0 3.0 17.4 -14.4 1.0 1.6 -0.6
51 Wool, thin or thick animal hair … 110.8 181.0 -70.3 143.4 227.9 -84.5 -32.6 -46.9 14.2
52 Cotton 49.9 434.9 -385.0 45.7 496.8 -451.1 4.3 -61.9 66.2
53 Other plant textile products 29.5 28.5 1.0 39.9 48.8 -8.8 -10.5 -20.3 9.8
54 Continuous chemical fibers 194.5 589.0 -394.4 238.4 651.5 -413.1 -43.8 -62.5 18.7
55 Cut chemical fibers 59.8 406.1 -346.3 77.6 447.2 -369.6 -17.8 -41.1 23.2
56
Cotton wool, felt and unwoven fabrics, special
yarns … 143.8 353.2 -209.4 136.3 328.3 -192.0 7.5 24.9 -17.4
57 Carpets and other textile floor carpeting 135.7 219.1 -83.4 126.1 173.4 -47.3 9.6 45.8 -36.1
58 Special textiles, notions, embroidery … 49.1 231.4 -182.3 49.8 247.5 -197.8 -0.7 -16.1 15.5
59 Impregnated fabrics … 168.1 448.5 -280.4 168.1 449.0 -280.9 0.0 -0.5 0.5
60 Knitted fabrics 76.7 199.7 -122.9 90.7 214.9 -124.2 -14.0 -15.2 1.2
61
Clothes and clothing accessories of knitted
fabrics 799.0 1,057.6 -258.6 519.3 675.1 -155.8 279.7 382.5 -102.8
62
Clothes and clothing accessories, other than of
knitted fabrics 1,422.5 1,138.7 283.7 1,234.9 753.6 481.2 187.6 385.1 -197.5
63
Other packaged textile products; sets; used
clothes; rags 571.1 464.9 106.2 549.0 376.6 172.4 22.1 88.3 -66.2
XII FOOTWEAR, HEADGEAR, UMBRELLAS … 397.1 721.0 -323.9 369.0 575.7 -206.8 28.1 145.2 -117.1
64 Footwear, gaiters and similar products, parts 315.1 611.6 -296.5 302.0 493.0 -191.0 13.1 118.6 -105.5
Group / section / subsection 2008 2007 Changes
Export Import Balance Export Import Balance Export
growth +
decline -
Import
growth (+)
decline (-)
Balance
improved
(+)
worsene
d
thereof
65 Headgear and parts thereof 57.2 50.8 6.4 43.5 34.8 8.7 13.7 16.0 -2.3
66
Umbrellas, sun umbrellas, walking sticks,
walking sticks with seats, whips, horsewhips
and parts thereof 18.4 17.2 1.2 17.4 14.0 3.4 1.0 3.2 -2.2
67
Prepared feathers and down, products of
feathers and down … 6.3 41.3 -35.0 6.0 33.9 -27.8 0.3 7.4 -7.1
(XI-XII) Light industry products 4,211.5 6,492.5 -2,281.0 3,791.0 5,683.6 -1,892.6 420.5 809.0 -388.4
XIII PRODUCTS OF STONE, GYPSUM … 2,344.6 1,986.7 357.9 2,309.9 1,773.8 536.1 34.7 212.9 -178.2
68
Products of stone, gypsum, cement, asbestos,
mica and similar materials 573.1 493.0 80.1 572.4 434.3 138.1 0.7 58.6 -57.9
69 Ceramic products 728.7 504.0 224.7 683.7 426.2 257.5 45.1 77.8 -32.8
70 Glass and glass products 1,042.7 989.7 53.0 1,053.8 913.2 140.6 -11.0 76.5 -87.5
XIV
PEARLS; PRECIOUS AND SEMI-PRECIOUS
METALS AND STONES; COSTUME JEWELRY 554.8 329.4 225.4 524.9 281.6 243.3 29.9 47.8 -17.9
71
Pearls; precious and semi-precious stones,
precious metals 554.8 329.4 225.4 524.9 281.6 243.3 29.9 47.8 -17.9
(XIII-XIV) Ceramic products 2,899.4 2,316.1 583.3 2,834.8 2,055.4 779.4 64.6 260.7 -196.1
XV BASE METALS AND PRODUCTS THEREOF 15,082.1 16,048.8 -966.7 13,529.3 15,234.7 -1,705.4 1,552.8 814.1 738.8
72 Iron, cast iron and steel 4,317.7 6,559.3 -2,241.6 3,353.5 5,982.2 -2,628.6 964.1 577.1 387.0
73 Products of cast iron and steel 5,019.6 4,150.8 868.8 4,572.4 3,603.8 968.5 447.3 547.0 -99.7
74 Copper and copper products 2,319.0 1,068.1 1,250.9 2,455.1 1,115.7 1,339.3 -136.0 -47.6 -88.4
75 Nickel and nickel products 17.5 121.2 -103.8 22.9 122.8 -99.9 -5.5 -1.6 -3.9
76 Aluminum and aluminum products 1,520.4 2,165.2 -644.8 1,502.4 2,319.8 -817.4 18.0 -154.6 172.7
78 Lead and lead products 90.0 69.1 20.9 94.7 98.9 -4.2 -4.7 -29.8 25.1
79 Zinc and zinc products 142.9 113.4 29.4 223.0 189.7 33.3 -80.2 -76.3 -3.9
80 Tin and tin products 16.5 37.2 -20.7 30.9 35.5 -4.6 -14.5 1.6 -16.1
81
Other base metals, ceramic metals, products
thereof 13.6 63.2 -49.5 10.9 62.5 -51.6 2.7 0.6 2.1
82
Tools, instruments, knives, spoons, forks etc.
cutlery of base metals .. 881.1 649.3 231.9 541.7 729.8 -188.1 339.5 -80.5 420.0
83 Various products of base metals 743.9 1,052.0 -308.2 721.8 973.8 -252.1 22.1 78.2 -56.1
(XV) Metallurgy products 15,082.1 16,048.8 -966.7 13,529.3 15,234.7 -1,705.4 1,552.8 814.1 738.8
XVI MECHANICAL AND ELECTRICAL EQUIPMENT 28,717.7 34,353.4 -5,635.7 25,390.7 29,560.9 -4,170.2 3,327.0 4,792.5 -1,465.5
84
Nuclear reactors, boilers, machinery and
mechanical equipment and parts thereof 14,286.3 19,263.0 -4,976.7 12,531.1 16,423.0 -3,891.9 1,755.2 2,840.0 -1,084.8
85 Electrical machines and equipment 14,431.4 15,090.3 -658.9 12,859.6 13,137.8 -278.3 1,571.9 1,952.5 -380.6
Group / section / subsection 2008 2007 Changes
Export Import Balance Export Import Balance Export
growth +
decline -
Import
growth (+)
decline (-)
Balance
improved
(+)
worsene
d
XVII VEHICLES, AIRCRAFT, VESSELS … 20,175.8 16,565.6 3,610.2 16,889.1 13,733.0 3,156.1 3,286.7 2,832.6 454.1
86
Locomotives, rolling stock; track equipment;
signaling devices 519.8 325.7 194.1 380.0 237.0 143.0 139.8 88.7 51.0
87 Non-rail vehicles, parts and accessories 16,770.5 14,464.5 2,306.0 13,741.7 12,046.3 1,695.4 3,028.8 2,418.2 610.6
88 Aircraft, space craft and their parts 241.7 192.7 49.0 137.8 228.4 -90.6 103.9 -35.8 139.7
89 Vessels, boats and floating constructions 2,643.8 1,582.8 1,061.1 2,629.5 1,221.3 1,408.3 14.3 361.5 -347.2
XVIII OPTICAL EQUIPMENT AND APPARATUSES 1,008.9 3,758.3 -2,749.4 827.5 2,908.1 -2,080.6 181.4 850.3 -668.8
90
Optical equipment, tools, apparatuses, photo
cameras, measuring and medical equipment,
parts thereof 968.0 3,621.0 -2,653.0 787.7 2,788.6 -2,000.9 180.3 832.5 -652.1
91 Clocks and watches, and parts thereof 21.7 102.5 -80.8 24.4 90.9 -66.5 -2.7 11.6 -14.3
92 Musical instruments, parts and accessories 19.2 34.8 -15.6 15.4 28.6 -13.2 3.8 6.2 -2.4
(XVI-XVIII) Electromechanical products 49,902.4 54,677.3 -4,774.9 43,107.3 46,201.9 -3,094.6 6,795.2 8,475.4 -1,680.2
XIX
WEAPONS AND AMMUNITION, PARTS AND
ACCESSORIES 29.8 97.3 -67.6 49.1 95.8 -46.7 -19.3 1.6 -20.9
93
Weapons and ammunition, parts and
accessories 29.8 97.3 -67.6 49.1 95.8 -46.7 -19.3 1.6 -20.9
XX VARIOUS PRODUCTS 6,933.8 2,557.8 4,376.1 6,473.0 2,096.8 4,376.2 460.8 461.0 -0.1
94
Furniture, bedclothes, mattresses etc., lamps,
light advertising etc. 6,614.1 1,690.3 4,923.9 6,159.8 1,412.8 4,747.0 454.3 277.4 176.8
95
Toys, games, sports goods, parts and
accessories 195.4 597.0 -401.6 198.0 428.7 -230.6 -2.6 168.3 -171.0
96 Various manufactured products 124.3 270.5 -146.2 115.2 255.3 -140.2 9.2 15.2 -6.0
XXI WORKS OF ART, COLLECTIBLES 9.0 10.7 -1.7 9.2 6.0 3.2 -0.2 4.7 -4.9
97 Works of art, collectibles and antiques 9.0 10.7 -1.7 9.2 6.0 3.2 -0.2 4.7 -4.9
XXII OTHER 42.8 3,287.9 -3,245.1 30.2 2,040.3 -2,010.1 12.6 1,247.5 -1,235.0
98 Special classification – deliveries 0.0 27.1 -27.1 0.0 24.4 -24.4 0.0 2.7 -2.7
99 Special commercial transactions 42.8 3,260.8 -3,218.0 30.2 2,015.9 -1,985.7 12.6 1,244.9 -1,232.3
PCN unknown or erroneous 0.0 624.2 -624.2 0.0 1,006.2 -1,006.2 0.0 -382.0 382.0
Source: Analyses and Forecasting Department of the Ministry of Economy, on the basis of data of the CSO.
POLAND 2009 – REPORT ON FOREIGN TRADE
49
7 DESIGNATION OF IMPORTED GOODS
7.1 Distribution of import
The CSO data on the execution of foreign trade turnover per the base economic categories (BEC) show
that within the structure of import distribution in 2008, the share of investment and indirect consumption
goods decreased. The share of investment goods dropped from 17.8% in 2007 to 17.4% in 2008. The
share of goods designated for indirect consumption was reduced from 63.4% to 62.7%. The total share
of the pro-development import stream (investment and supplies) in the total import reached the level
of 80% in 2008.
On the other hand, the share of consumption goods stream in the total import rose from 18.8% in 2007
to 19.9% in 2008.
Chart 14 The structure of import distribution in the years 2006-2008
18.3
65.5
16.2
18.8
63.4
17.8
19.9
62.7
17.4
0 10 20 30 40 50 60 70
Consumption goods
Indirect consumption
Investment goods
%
2006 2007 2008
Source: Analyses and Forecasting Department of the Ministry of Economy, on the basis of data of the CSO.
In the case of investment goods9, import grew by 15.5%, compared to growth by 31.1% in 2007.
Within this category, import of industrial transport means grew by 6.1%, and of other consumer goods
by 18.3%, or slower by 32.3 percentage points and 10.8 percentage points than a year earlier. The
import of goods designated for indirect consumption rose by 17.1%, or by 1.4 percentage point
faster than in 2007. This was largely due to significant acceleration of the import of crude fuels and
greases, as well as parts and accessories for transport means, by 46.7% and 20.4%, respectively.
9 The changes are presented in euro.
MINISTRY OF ECONOMY
50
Growth of the share of consumer goods’ stream in the total import occurred primarily because of the
import of processed foodstuffs and beverages for households (by 34%, or by 11.5 percentage points
faster than in 2007); cars (by 28.9%, or by 2.1 percentage points slower than in 2007); and consumer
goods of semi-durable and short-term use (the respective growth by 27% and 23%, or by 4.2
percentage points and 5.6 percentage points faster than in 2007), compared against the overall growth
of consumer goods’ import by 25.2% (growth in 2007 reached 22.5%).
7.2 Influence of the import of crude energy materials on the
total Polish import
The past 6 years saw a dynamic growth of import expenses for the purchase of basic crude energy
materials, that is, petroleum oil and natural gas.
The clear growth of import expenses for purchase of petroleum oil was seen in the years 2006-2008.
The growth of expenses was significant, but it was not caused by the growing import volume, as in
comparison to 2007 it was reduced by 100 thousand tons, to 20,787 thousand tons (in 2007, the annual
increase in import volume amounted to 1,072 thousand tons). The direct reason for growing expenses
for import of petroleum oil was the dramatic increase in its prices in the global markets (from EUR
364/ton in 2007 to EUR 459/ton in 2008).
The prices of imported natural gas in 2008 also rose dynamically in comparison to the previous year,
that is, from EUR 213/1000 m3 in 2007 to EUR 316/1000m3 in 2008. The volume of import, after a
decline in 2007 (by 756 million m3 in comparison to 2006, to the level of 9.6 billion m3) continued its
upward trend from the years 2003-2006, exceeding the level of 10.6 billion m3 in 2008. This constituted
a growth of over 1 billion m3 compared to the previous year, and by more than 2.8 m3compared to
2002.
The significant increase of natural gas prices, coupled with rising import volume in 2008, caused an
increase of import expenses by over 64%, totaling more than EUR 3.3 billion (compared to about EUR 2
billion in 2007).
The growth of total expenses for the import of petroleum oil and gas in the years 2006-2008 (measured
in relation to 2002) turned out to be dynamic. It reached a total of EUR 5.6 billion in 2007, and as much
as EUR 8,8 billion in 2008. In these amounts, about 86% (EUR 4.8 billion) and about 90% (close to EUR
8 billion) was attributed to the results of rising prices, and only a slight portion of them was the
consequence of growing import volume.
The increase of import expenses for the purchase of the said crude materials, caused by their rising
prices in the years 2006-2008 (in comparison to price level from 2002) was during this period the main
reason for rising overall deficit in exchange with Russia, which is the almost sole supplier of petroleum
oil and natural gas to Poland.
POLAND 2009 – REPORT ON FOREIGN TRADE
51
Table 14 The influence of rising prices of crude energy materials since 2003 on the import expenses in
the years 2003-2008 (base year – 2002)
No Description unit of
measure
2002 2003 2004 2005 2006 2007 2008
Petroleum oil
1 Import volume thousand
tons
17,717 17,028 17,316 17,912 19,813 20,885 20,787
2 Average import price of 1 ton of
petroleum oil
EUR 178 170 195 292 351 364 459
3 Import expenses million
EUR
3,154 2,895 3,377 5,230 7,212 7,602 9,541
4 Volume growth compared to 2002 thousand
tons
- -689 -401 195 2,096 3,168 3,070
5 Price increase compared to 2002 EUR - -8 17 114 173 186 281
6 Overall increase of import
expenses, of this
million
EUR
- -259 223 2,076 4,058 4,448 6,387
6.1 caused by volume growth million
EUR
- -123 -71 34 373 564 546
6.2 caused by price increase million
EUR
- -136 294 2,042 3,428 3,885 5,841
Natural gas
7 Import volume million m3 7,775 8,721 9,445 9,919 10,354 9,598 10,619
8 Average annual import price per
1K m3 of gas
EUR 113 118 112 157 213 213 316
9 Import expenses million
EUR
879 1,029 1,058 1,557 2,205 2,044 3,356
10 Volume growth compared to 2002 million m³ - 946 1,670 2,144 2,579 1,823 2,844
11 Price increase compared to 2002 EUR - 5 -1 44 100 100 203
12 Overall increase of import
expenses, of this
million
EUR
- 150 179 678 1,326 1,165 2,477
12.1 caused by volume growth million
EUR
- 107 189 242 291 206 321
12.2 caused by price increase million
EUR
- 44 -9 436 1,035 960 2,156
Petroleum oil and natural gas, total
13 Overall increase of import
expenses, of this:
million
EUR
- -109 402 2,754 5,384 5,613 8,864
13.1 caused by volume growth million
EUR
- -16 118 276 664 770 867
13.2 caused by price increase million
EUR
- -92 285 2,478 4,463 4,845 7,997
Note: (1) increase of expenses tied to volume growth = growth of volume in the given year compared to 2002 x average price
in 2002; (2) increase of expenses tied to price increase = import volume in the given year x price increase in the given year
compared to 2002 .
Source: Analyses and Forecasting Department of the Ministry of Economy, on the basis of data of the CSO and the Energy
Market Agency.
MINISTRY OF ECONOMY
52
Chart 15 The influence of rising prices of crude energy materials on the import expenses in the years
2003-2008 (base year – 2002)
0
1000
2000
3000
4000
5000
6000
7000
8000
9000
2003 2004 2005 2006 2007 2008
mln EUR
Increase of import expenses: petroleum oil and gas
caused by increase of volume
caused by increase of prices
Source: Analyses and Forecasting Department of the Ministry of Economy, on the basis of data of the CSO and the Energy
Market Agency.
The value of crude energy materials import almost automatically translates into the level of balance of
commodities exchange with Russia, which is the almost sole supplier of petroleum oil and natural gas to
Poland.
Chart 16 Balance of commodities exchange with Russia in the years 2003-2008, compared to the import
of mineral products from this market, and export to Russia, in EUR million
-12 000
-8 000
-4 000
0
4 000
8 000
12 000
2003 2004 2005 2006 2007 2008
mln EUR
Total export Import of mineral products
Balance of commodities exchange
Source: Analyses and Forecasting Department of the Ministry of Economy, on the basis of data of the CSO and the Energy
Market Agency.
POLAND 2009 – REPORT ON FOREIGN TRADE
53
8 FORECAST FOR 2009
The global economic situation was shaped largely by the growing influence of the global financial crisis,
which determines also the forecasts for economic situation in the world in 2009. Starting from the fall of
2008, the various scenarios for further development of the situation in all areas of the global economy,
presented by various research centers and international institutions were increasingly pessimistic.
In its latest forecast (April 2009), the International Monetary Fund adjusted downwards its forecasts
regarding the growth of global GDP. According to this forecast the global GDP would drop by a further
1.3% (in January 2009, the IMF estimated the growth of global GDP would reach 0.5%, and in October
2008 it spoke of a 3% growth).
According to forecasts, decreases of the GDP in 2009 would be the most felt by developed countries. It
is estimated that GDP of the United States would fall by 2.8%, and of the European Union by 4.2%.
Even more pessimistic are the forecasts for Japan, whose GDP is expected to drop by as much as
6.8%. It is believed that the current breakdown of the Japanese economy, caused by the global crisis, is
the most serious one in the post-war history of this country.
The outcomes of crisis are felt also in developing countries, whose economies were developing very
dynamically during the pre-crisis period. The dynamic increase of GDP in the developing Asian
countries (10.6% in 2007 and 7.7% in 2008) would be reduced to 4.8% in 2009. It is believed that in
China economic growth would slow down to 6.5% (from 13% in 2007 and 9% in 2008); and in India to
4.5% (from 9.3% in 2007 and 7.3% in 2008).
The most recent report of the OECD, of June 2009, suggests that Q2 of 2009 commenced the positive
breakthrough in overcoming the crisis. The report suggests that starting from Q2 of 2009, the global
economic situation is slowly stabilizing.
Table 15 Foreseen levels of GDP growth in the world and in the most important markets
2007 2008 2009
World 5.2 3.2 -1.3
United States ** 2.0 1.1 -2.8
Europe * 3.9 1.8 -4.2
EU-27 3.1 1.1 -4.0
CIS 8.6 5.5 -5.1
Africa 6.2 5.2 2.0
Developing Asian countries 10.6 7.7 4.8
China 13.0 9.0 6.5
Japan ** 2.3 -0.7 -6.8
India 9.3 7.3 4.5
Newly industrialized Asian countries*** 5.7 1.5 -5.6
* IMF of May 2009; ** OECD of June 2009; *** Hong Kong, Republic of Korea, Singapore, Taiwan
Source: Analyses and Forecasting Department of the Ministry of Economy, on the basis of data of the IMF from April 2009.
The dramatic worsening of economic situation in H2 of 2008 made perspectives for global trade growth
exceptionally uncertain.
MINISTRY OF ECONOMY
54
The outcomes of global recession have been clearly visible in the global trade turnover in November
and December of 2008 (decline by 5.3% and 7%, respectively, in comparison to the previous month).
The largest import breakdown was seen in the rising economies (by 11.9%), and in export, Japan
suffered the most (drop by 9.9%). In comparison to the years 1991-2008, when the largest declines in
trading volumes did not exceed 2% (month to month basis), the current decrease was unprecedented.
In Q4 of 2008, the global trade turnover dropped by 22% in comparison to the same period of the
previous year, and by 6% in comparison to the preceding quarter10.
During the first months of 2009, the volume of global trade continued its downward move. In the coming
months of 2009, the downward trend should be stopped, and the end of the year should even bring a
small increase. The reason for improvement is to be the relatively rapid growth of consumer and
investment demand in developing Asian countries.
The predictions of OECD of June 2009 state that the global trade volume would be reduced by 16% in
2009, and in 2010 it would grow by 2.1%.
Table 16 Forecast for the growth of foreign trade turnover in the years 2008-2010
2008 2009* 2010*
Export Import Export Import Export Import
Germany 2.2 3.9 -18.9 -10.8 0.9 0.9
France -0.5 0.6 -14.4 -11.4 -2.4 -1.8
Italy -3.7 -4.5 -20.9 -17.0 -0.7 -0.2
United Kingdom 0.1 -0.6 -12.1 -13.5 1.0 -1.0
the Netherlands 2.6 4.1 -13.9 -13.5 -0.5 -0.6
Poland 7.2 8.3 -10.2 -12.8 2.5 1.5
United States 6.2 -3.5 -13.8 -15.7 1.6 1.2
Japan 1.8 0.9 -32.3 -12.6 3.5 2.3
Russia 0.5 15.0 -5.6 -20.0 3.7 10.0
China 8.7 5.2 -13.0 -7.8 7.4 10.0
* forecast
Source: Analyses and Forecasting Department of the Ministry of Economy, on the basis of data of the OECD from June
2009.
The dynamic growth of Polish trade after 9 months of 2008 (in export by 19.8% and in import by 23.8%)
were stopped in Q4 of 2008, in consequence of the spreading global economic crisis. In Q4 of 2008,
export fell by 1.2% and import grew by 3.7%. The first months of 2009 brought much deeper changes in
Poland’s commodities exchange. After 5 months of 2009, the decline of export turnover (measured in
Euro) reached 23.7%, and in import 30.9%. This means that, in line with the original forecast of the
Ministry of Economy, the collapse of import observed from early 2009 is deeper than those of export.
Taking into account the above, preliminary results of foreign trade after the first months of this year, and
also the mentioned earlier external and internal conditions of the Polish foreign trade, the following
values are forecast:
- decrease of export volume by about 6.6%
- decrease of import volume by about 8.3%.
10 The numbers presented here come from a report of the Institute for Market, Consumption and Business Cycles Research
(IBRKK), prepared on the basis of data of the Association of European Conjuncture Institutes (AIECE).
POLAND 2009 – REPORT ON FOREIGN TRADE
55
It is also believed that in 2009 prices in export would fall by about 5%, and in import by about 8%.
Taking into account the above conditions, it is estimated that commodities turnover in 2009 would be
reduced:
- in export, by 12% to the level of about EUR 102 billion,
- in import, by 17% to the level of about EUR 118 billion, and as a result
- deficit would be reduced to the level of about EUR 16 billion, which would be about EUR
10 billion less in comparison to the previous year.
The above forecasts are based on the relatively optimistic assumption that the turnover reduction scale,
especially in export, would gradually diminish in the coming months of 2009. At the end of Q4, the
decrease of export would probably stop completely.
If the opinions of OECD experts (contained in their last report of June 2009) come true - according to
them, Q2 of 2009 saw the positive breakthrough in overcoming the crisis – we could expect a significant
turning point in foreign trade from Q4 onwards.
MINISTRY OF ECONOMY
56
List of tables
Table 1 Changes in commodities turnover volume in the world in the years 2006-2008 (in USD)......... 10
Table 2 Growth rate of commodities turnover volume in the world in the years 2000-2008 (in USD) .... 13
Table 3 The world’s largest exporters and importers in 2008................................................................. 15
Table 4 Growth rate of the global GDP and commerce in the years 1996-2010 .................................... 16
Chart 3 Changes in global commerce in quarterly perspective – Q3 2008 – Q4 of 2010....................... 16
Table 5 Growth rate of the global commerce in selected countries, in the years 2006-2010 ................. 17
Table 6 Foreign trade turnover according to data of the Central Statistical Office, in the years 1991-2008
.............................................................................................................................................................. 21
Table 7 Dynamics of the commodities turnover volume in the years 2001-2008 ................................... 25
Table 8 Poland’s commodities turnover in the years 2007-2008, in EUR million ................................... 29
Table 9 Turnover in goods and services and the current account balance, as well as their value per
capita and in proportion to the GDP in the years 2001-2008 ................................................................. 30
Table 10 Commodities turnover according to CSO data in the years 2007-2008................................... 32
Table 11 Changes in the geographical structure of Poland’s commodities turnover (in EUR million) .... 35
Table 12 Commodity structure of Poland’s trade turnover in the years 2006-2007, in million euro........ 41
Table 13 Changes in the Polish foreign trade turnover per commodities groups and sections, in EUR
million.................................................................................................................................................... 44
Table 14 The influence of rising prices of crude energy materials since 2003 on the import expenses in
the years 2003-2008 (base year – 2002) ............................................................................................... 51
Table 15 Foreseen levels of GDP growth in the world and in the most important markets .................... 53
Table 16 Forecast for the growth of foreign trade turnover in the years 2008-2010............................... 54
POLAND 2009 – REPORT ON FOREIGN TRADE
57
List of charts
Chart 1 Changes in commodities turnover volume in selected countries and groups of countries in the
years 2006-2008 (in USD) ..................................................................................................................... 10
Chart 2 Growth rate of commodities turnover in selected countries and groups of countries in the years
2006-2008 (in USD) ............................................................................................................................... 11
Chart 3 Changes in global commerce in quarterly perspective – Q3 2008 – Q4 of 2010....................... 16
Chart 4 Dynamics of transaction and foreign currency prices in export compared to changes in the
effective FX rate (Q4 of 2000 = 100%)................................................................................................... 19
Chart 5 Dynamics of transaction and foreign currency prices in import compared to changes in the
effective FX rate (Q4 of 2000 = 100%)................................................................................................... 20
Chart 6 Changes in Poland’s export denominated in US dollars, for the years 1991-2008 (in %).......... 22
Chart 7 Changes in Poland’s import denominated in US dollars, for the years 1991-2008 (in %).......... 22
Chart 8 Changes in exchange of commodities, aggregated in 10 commodities groups, measured in EUR
million.................................................................................................................................................... 23
Chart 9 Proportion of the current account balance to the GDP in % ...................................................... 31
Chart 10 Growth rate of export and import measured in euro and $ in the years 2007-2008 (in %
compared to the same month of the previous year)............................................................................... 31
Chart 11 Commodity structure of the Polish export in 2008, compared to 2007 and 2003 .................... 39
Chart 12 Commodity structure of the Polish import in 2008, compared to 2007 and 2003 .................... 40
Chart 13 Commodity structure of the Polish foreign trade balance in 2008, compared to 2007 and 2003
(in EUR million) ..................................................................................................................................... 40
Chart 14 The structure of import distribution in the years 2006-2008..................................................... 49
Chart 15 The influence of rising prices of crude energy materials on the import expenses in the years
2003-2008 (base year – 2002)............................................................................................................... 52
Chart 16 Balance of commodities exchange with Russia in the years 2003-2008, compared to the import
of mineral products from this market, and export to Russia, in EUR millions ......................................... 52
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