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Fitch maintains Poland’s ratings, predicts 2.8% growth in 2012


Fitch, the international credit rating agency, has affirmed Poland's Long-term foreign currency Issuer Default Rating (IDR) at A-, and its Long-term local currency IDR at A, with a stable outlook on both ratings. The ratings of the country’s short-term debt have also been upheld at F2 and AA-, respectively.

According to Fitch, the government’s progress on its fiscal consolidation programme in 2011 and further deficit-reduction plans have eased the downward pressure on the country’s ratings, which are being supported by GDP growth, macroeconomic resilience, a credible monetary policy and floating exchange rate of the currency, and a relatively strong financial sector.

Fitch expects GDP growth in Poland to slow to 2.8% this year from 4.3% in 2011 due to weak growth at Poland’s main trading partners and flagging domestic demand, though the country is likely to be the one of the fastest-growing economies in the EU in 2012. The general government deficit is projected to fall to 3.5% from an estimated 5.6% at the end of 2011 and 7.8% at the end of 2010, which should be enough to take the country out of Brussels’ excessive deficit procedure. Public debt should also start falling from 57% of GDP last year.

At the same time, the government’s ambitious package of public finance reforms, outlined in November 2011, has a strong chance of being implemented over 2012-2013 without any major watering down, the agency reckons. Fitch still regards Poland’s external financing position as a weak point, however.

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