Polish economy strong through diversity - minister

Kościński said not all economic sectors in Poland suffered equally from the epidemic, and some, like home deliveries and IT, were managing well. Adam Warżawa/PAP

Diversity is the strength of the Polish economy during the coronavirus epidemic, Finance Minister Tadeusz Kościński said on Monday at the opening of the 3rd Development Visions Forum in Gdynia, northern Poland.

Kościński said not all economic sectors in Poland suffered equally from the epidemic, and some, like home deliveries and IT, were managing well. He added that in future the entire economy will have to function in changed conditions, which will be made easier by its considerable diversity.

"Some, like air travel, entertainment, catering and trade, have been hit harder. But we have sectors that are managing quite well, like IT or home deliveries. In future all these sectors will have to find ways to function in new conditions, and in this situation the strength of Poland's economy lies in its diversification. It's not dependent on one branch, like tourism, as in some countries," Koscinki said.

Kościński warned that a threat to economic growth was the epidemic-caused investment slump, and admitted that over a quarter of Polish enterprise has halted investment. In this situation, he appealed for reductions in red tape and tax cuts as a measure to encourage investors.

He also warned against a threatening export slump, reminding that 80 percent of Poland's foreign sales went to the EU, mainly Germany, where the epidemic-caused recession was much deeper than in Poland.

Expected at the two-day forum are over 450 speakers, including PM Mateusz Morawiecki, Family, Labour and Social Policy Minister Marlena Maląg, Funds and Regional Policy Minister Małgorzata Jarosińska-Jedynak, Agriculture and Rural Development Minister Jan Krzysztof Ardanowski, Finance Minister Tadeusz Kościński and Deputy Health Minister Józefa Szczurek-Żelasko.

Also attending the meeting will be business experts, scientists and journalists, as well as delegates from the Polish Space Agency and leading industrial enterprises.

Divided into several panel groups, the delegates will review current regional and national economic challenges and seek innovative ways of dealing with them. Discussed, among others, will be vocational schooling, automation, robotics, the social aspects of commerce and Poland's major investment undertakings, such as the ongoing construction of a waterway across the northern Vistula Spit and the Central Transportation Port (CPK) in central Poland.

Also debated will be the diversification of Poland's industrial production, aid for Polish SMEs, the impact of the mass media, the film industry and the 5G network on economic growth and public life, economic solutions for senior citizens and current tasks related to the coronavirus epidemic.

A separate debate bloc will focus on offshore wind power.

Accompanying the talks will be a Hackathon event for online programmers, who will work on applications designed to streamline life in big cities.

All the debates will be transmitted online.

The first day of the forum will also include the awarding of the Development Visions Forum Economic Award.

The meeting will take place in full observation of binding epidemic precautions.

The Polish Press Agency is the forum's main media partner.