Poland well prepared for 2nd wave of epidemic: development fund head

With the second wave of the coronavirus pandemic closing in on Poland, the head of the Polish Development Fund (PFR) Paweł Borys expresses a conviction that the Polish economy is well prepared for what the coronavirus pandemic has in stock.

During the 10th European Financial Congress, which began online on Monday, Mr Borys said that “I am convinced that, whilst entering the second wave of the epidemic, the Polish economy is well prepared for it.”

However, Mr Borys added that the current second wave probably means that "we still have difficult months ahead of us". “Unfortunately, we see in the span of the last days that the second wave of infections became a fact in the whole of Europe. We say ‘farewell’ to the V-shape inasmuch as we welcome the W-shape symbolising the dynamics of the economy.”

He argued that deposits are more than PLN 50 billion (EUR 1.20 bn) higher than they were in March, so companies have a fairly solid liquidity cushion. According to Borys, nearly 50 percent of Polish companies state that they have sufficient financial reserves to last for at least three months.

He assessed that the current situation on the labour market is stable and said that Poland will not face an economic lockdown. Mr Borys expressed hope that the enterprise sector and the labour market will manage to navigate the upcoming period "safely, without bankruptcy and without a significant jump in unemployment."

Mr Borys also pointed out that economic activity is around 93-95 percent of the pre-COVID level and that the third quarter saw a strong economic rebound and that he hoped the next quarter or two will not cause a sharp slowdown of this trend, although he did not exclude the possibility of an economic slowdown in the future.