Poland's GDP per capita up to 70 pct of OECD average - minister

Over the 25 years of Poland's membership of the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD), the country's GDP per capita rose to 70 percent of the organisation's average from 40 percent in 1996, the development minister has said.

Piotr Nowak made the statement at a conference marking the 25th anniversary of Poland's OECD membership on Monday.

Nowak said that after the fall of communism in 1989, the OECD "was the first integration-oriented Western international institution to accept Poland."

"When joining the OECD, the Polish GDP per capita constituted 40 percent of the OECD member states' average, while today it's close to 70 percent," the minister said.

He added the fundamental changes that Poland experienced in the 1990s were partly possible due to OECD aid, which helped the country carry out economic and public policy reforms, affecting such areas as education and employment.

OECD secretary general, Mathias Cormann, said that Poland "is an inspiring example for other former communist countries" on how to conduct a successful transformation towards a market economy.