Poland's business relief scheme will boost deficit to 12 pct of GDP

The PFR shield, a multi-billion government programme aimed to prop up Polish businesses hit by the coronavirus crisis, will have to be included in the general government deficit in 2020, raising it to 12 pct of the country's GDP, a deputy minister said.

"After consultations carried out with GUS (Poland's stats office - PAP), the Finance Ministry and Eurostat, the PFR shield will be calculated into the general government deficit. This means that this year's deficit will be higher than we had assumed in the APK (annual update to the EU's Convergence Programme - APK) and will reach 12 percent of GDP," Deputy Finance Minister Piotr Patkowski said on Thursday.

The ministry predicts the general government deficit will go down to 6 pct of GDP in 2021, Patkowski also said.

The central government's deficit will go up to 4.9 percent of GDP this year, and will not exceed 3.5 pct in 2021, according to the deputy minister.