Economic conditions. – After the Second World War, a radical transformation of the country’s economy took place. The new Polish economic structure, approved in a referendum of June 1946, envisages three fundamental sectors: the state, the private and the cooperative. Through the nationalization of the basic activities of production, the state exercises a predominant influence. A three-year plan is being implemented, called the “national economic plan”, which covers the period 1 January 1947-31 December 1949; Unlike other reconstruction plans, which set the industrialization of individual countries as a fundamental objective, the Polish plan essentially aims to raise the standard of living of the population. The investments for the plan fluctuate, for the individual years, around the average of 20 per cent of national income. Equal to 40 billion złoti in 1946, they rose to 115 and 230 billion respectively in 1947 and 1948 and are forecast for 1949 at 309 billion. A new six-year economic plan will come into effect in 1950.
Livestock breeding. – Before the war, the territories which now form Poland possessed a substantial livestock patrimony. The losses were very strong, as can be seen from the data in the following table (in thousands of items):
The reconstitution of this patrimony is taking place rather rapidly, as evidenced by the data for June 1946 (in thousands of head): horses 1729; cattle 3910; sheep 727; goats 547; pigs 2674.
Land reform. – An agrarian reform had been carried out in pre-war Poland under the laws of July 15, 1920 and December 28, 1925, and already in 1937 an area of 2.5 million hectares had been expropriated and distributed. A new reform was decreed on September 6, 1944, and by January 10, 1947, 4,270,000 ha were already distributed to 700,000 peasant families. The expropriated land consists of the estates of the territories of ancient Poland and the estates already belonging to Germans, in the “recovered” territories, or to Ukrainians, in eastern Poland.
Forests. – As we have seen, the area occupied by forests is around 7 million hectares; most of it belongs to the state (6 million ha.), and the rest to municipalities or private individuals. Despite the damage suffered, it remains one of the most considerable in Europe. Conifers (especially pines, then picee and firs) have the absolute prevalence, covering 80% of the forest area. We do not have data on current forest production, but the export data tells us that it must already be significant.
Fishing. – In pre-war Poland, sea fishing could not have been of importance due to the scarce development of the coast: but, with the acquisition of a much wider coast, it is on the way to becoming an activity of conspicuous importance. In 1946 there were 2600 active fishermen and they had 118 motor boats and 1027 other boats, sailing or rowing; the production was 23,350 q. of fish, insufficient to satisfy the demand, although the consumption of fish is minimal: so that Poland is forced to import large quantities of smoked, salted or canned fish. For Poland 2019, please check philosophynearby.com.
Finance. – Public finances appear sufficiently sound. The budget surpluses, which appear after the release, are used to finance investments in the sector of the economy borne by the Treasury, which are included in a separate budget. The contribution of the state in this capacity was 13 billion in 1946 and 27.8 billion zloty in 1947; in 1948 it is expected to be 41 billion. The changes in the balance sheet after the release appear from the table.
Poland participates in the International Monetary Fund and the World Bank with shares of $ 125 million each.
At the time of the liberation there were various coins in circulation: the zloty of the Issuing Bank of Krakow, the German marks, the Soviet rubles; in October 1944 the government of Lublin began to issue the new notes of the National Bank of Poland, which, however, was only established in January 1945. Only later did the Bank take on the issue directly; at the same time the other coins in circulation were exchanged for the new notes. Circulation, which amounted to 1.4 billion zlotys in 1938, had risen to 60.1 billion at the end of 1946; in September 1948 the notes of the National Bank of Poland in circulation amounted to 115.4 billion zlotys.
Until April 1946 the official exchange rate against the dollar remained fixed as in the pre-war period, at 5.30 Zł = US $ 1, although with the system of rewards the effective exchange rate was close to 100 Zl. per dollar; at that time the official exchange rate was fixed at 100 zloty per dollar and this exchange rate has remained unchanged; however in July 1947 a tourist exchange of 250 Zł = 1 $ was introduced, and in November 1947 a special exchange of 400 zloty per dollar for certain types of financial remittances. Foreign trade is almost entirely in the hands of the state; the currency monopoly is exercised by the National Bank.
The National Bank of Poland, a state bank, has the privilege of issuing; in addition to the normal tasks, it has that of participating in the elaboration of the economic plan and of establishing a general plan of credits to be granted to the economy. Under the new banking system (November 1948), there are, besides the National Bank, only six major banks (Investment Bank, Agricultural Bank, Municipal Bank, Craft and Commerce Bank, General Savings Bank, Foreign Trade Bank) and local cooperatives. All banks, except the Bank of Foreign Trade and the cooperatives, are state-owned. In June 1948 the deposits amounted to 82 billion zlotys. A 1948 statutory savings law requires earners to earn more than 20. 000 zloty per month to deposit a portion of their income in blocked accounts, which varies according to the amount of the latter; this saving, expected to be around 20 billion per year, will be mostly destined for public investments.