Wednesday, December 12, 2007

Poland slips down the index

Two rankings released his week – the FDI Confidence Index, and the Migration Integration Policy Index – show Poland performing poorly.

The real shock is the FDI index – Poland has slipped from 5th to 22nd in just 12 months. India and China are the sexiest for the investor.

The consultancy that produces the report says emerging economies are the most attractive. Of ‘Eastern Europe’ it says:

While executives see opportunity in Eastern Europe's lower labor costs and proximity to Western Europe, they remain concerned about corruption and the lack of reform in the region.

The perception of Poland has taken a dive at a time of rising confidence in the region, in general. Investors think that Poland still has poor infrastructure, is conflictual with Moscow and Brussels, still corrupt and, crucially, the cost of labour is going up.

Now, the above sounds, of course, like a description of how critics see the performance of the previous PiS government.

From Poland with love

Another index, this time the Migration Integration Policy Index, produced by a Very Big Brussels Think Tank, doesn’t rank Poland too highly, either. Out of 28 European countries measured, Poland struggled in at number 21.

Oh, bugger.

Ranked on anti-discrimination initiatives, access to the labour market, etc, Poland falls down on its …migration, integration, policy.

The above are both examples of how the previous government alienated the rest of...well, Planet Earth, quite frankly. It was a bit of, what they call in the trade, A Big PR Balls Up.

Will the next government improve Poland’s battered image? Well, if the body language between Tusk and Frau Merkel was anything to go by when they met in Berlin yesterday, then things could get steamy!

But one cold shower for Tusk could be a sign of things to come. Coal miners are getting restless.


michael farris said...

Yeah, looking at that picture ... cue up the porno music!

(Excuse me, I just threw up in my mouth a little damn you vivid imagination!)

Anonymous said...

Foreign investors don’t rely on the index they know the exact conditions on the ground, the thing to watch is the amount of investment going in to Poland from abroad to determine the real conditions. Investment capital votes with cash flow. FDI in 2006 was 11 billion USD if this tapers off dramatically then you got a problem also labour productivity needs to be increasing steadily.

The index may reflect a confidence problem with the management of the economy since the next round of economic reforms are now over due.

Tusk needs to understand that government spending has to drop significantly in order to have any real chance of a “Polish economic miracle”; this assumes he was serious about what he said. Polish government spending is often devoid of reality.

There are lots of good reasons for companies to invest in Poland but one of the big problems that need to get addressed is business unfriendly labour laws and labour laws lacking labour flexibility.

It all boils down to political will, is there enough to get a real reform program through? So we get to find out real quick whether Tusk’s rhetoric was political bullshit.

The migration thing is irrelevant the small amount of migrants come from culturally similar peoples who will not have great difficulties in assimilating into polish society

beatroot said...

Sorry to gove you nightmares, Mike!

The Index thing - there are a million indecies released everyday about something or other. These are basically think tanks and consultancies trying to appear useful. They are all impressionistic, too. Transparency International's is the same - a survey.

But it does show the PR effect of Kaczki government.

Anonymous said...

amount of investment going in to Poland from abroad to determine the real conditions. Investment capital votes with cash flow. FDI in 2006 was 11 billion USD

Do any of you have any handy dandy numbers indicative of how much was invested in each of the past five years going back to 2000?

In the US, I have seen many articles extolling the profitability of investing in Eastern / Central Europe and Poland has been prominently mentioned. Thing is, most investments abroad carry all kinds of management and other fees.

Anonymous said...

Results of a poll in which respondents were to evaluate the decision to introduce the martial law in Poland on December 13, 1981 are published by GAZETA WYBORCZA:

61 percent share the opinion that the army crackdown rescued Poland from a possibly disastrous military intervention by the Soviet Union.

michael farris said...

Some quick glancing through the link seemed to indicate to me that there wasn't much substance. AFAICT according to these folks, 'best practices' = no limits on migration whatsoever and they take a dim view of even reasonable (IMHO) attempts to prevent arranged marriage chain immigration or any assessment on whether individual immigrants will be an asset or drain.

Anonymous said...

The Gazeta Wyborca opinion poll was based on using a sampling of the population based on canvassing retired SB officers at the local old folks home. This being the same constituency that finds Gazeta Wyborca’s editorial policies appealing.

“Couldn’t resist” simply highlights the need for continued vetting as the poisonous vein of treason continues to exist in Polish society in terms of a segment of the population that grind their teeth in anger over the end of the PRL occupation regime.

Anonymous said...

Just wondering...

How exactly should a guy like Leszek Kolakowski be vetted?

How about Adam Michnik?


Anonymous said...

In other news, today Simon Mol was charged with infecting 12 women with HIV.

I am looking forward to coverage on this blog.

Anonymous said...

couldn't resist said" just wondering"

There is no question that Leszek Kołakowski preformed a great service in the struggles against communism after his transformation. But we can never forget his origins. So I will quote from biographical material concerning his past “In his youth Kołakowski was a precocious intellect and became a devout communist. In the years 1947-1966 he was a member of Polish United Workers' Party.” So we have him as a loyal communist during the most violent period of the PRL.

Yes people change but it does not give license to throw common sense out the window, as we do not allow child rapists to participate in operating a daycare centre for children.

Adam Michnik is a different matter and in many ways it makes him more dangerous, as he seems to have a blind spot with regards to the real nature of communism. To quote from one of his articles.. “We saw communism as a historical phenomenon and communists as people capable of becoming democrats.”. I do not share his view that those who supported and administered a system that murdered a 100 million people in recent history as being redeemable.

Walesa’s sin was the roundtable, but there he was substantively betrayed by associates, resulting in Poland’s tormentors being allowed to escape retribution for their crimes against the Polish people.

With respect to your question of what methods of vetting I would use, I will once again quote Michnik who pegs people like me with some clarity “fanatics of primitive anticommunism”. I would rephrase this to being a focussed ant-communist.

Real vetting involves sturdy lampposts, strong tree limbs and lots of rope.

Anonymous said...

I wonder if the real Jan Nowak / Zdzisław Jeziorański would have called for the lynching of Kolakowski, Michnik and Walesa.

Anonymous said...

couldn't resist said: “called for the lynching”

Lynching only figuratively.

Shouldn’t we be calling on due process of law? But as a society we have done something as abhorrent as calling for a lynching when on our behalf and without our permission the political elites chose to deny justice. Since we haven’t got due process of law then society or elements in society cannot help but to consider the alternative forms of justice. Lets remember that Poland’s political elites without permission or mandate from the people consciously chose to pronounce Polish blood and suffering as worthless.

Try for a moment to pop your head out of the leftist liberal butt!

This is a society where tortures, murders and betrayers mingle with us on a daily basis; they exist in the business world, in the civil service and at the family table. We rub shoulder with people who committed unspeakable acts on their own people without remorse or pity. Since the communist pestilence came to Poland from Sept 1939 and later 1944 to 1989. Poland was a nation on the receiving end of a calculated genocide, the apparatus was not just a few people at the top placed there by the Soviets but rather hundreds of thousands of people that made the system run up to 1989.

Thus far every attempt to use the courts has been sabotaged by judges who were in place during the PRL, with a vested interest of making these attempts fail.

I do appreciate the long historical memory of the Polish people presents an inconvenience to some political prospective fashionable with people from families that found it only too easy to join the communist party.

Anonymous said...

jannowak57 wrote: "Since we haven’t got due process of law then society or elements in society cannot help but to consider the alternative forms of justice."

<<<---( O )

Hmmmm. That doesn't sound so figurative to me. But then again, I guess you figure my hearing is impaired by your thinking that my head is stuck up my leftist liberal ass.

Anonymous said...

I wonder if the real Jan Nowak / Zdzisław Jeziorański would have called for the lynching of Kolakowski, Michnik and Walesa.

Having known Jan Nowak personally, I can tell you that he supported no such thing. He was no fan of Walesa as a President, but then again, very few people were. Nowak was a realist of the first order, God rest his fine soul.

Anonymous said...

Doesn't matter what the surveys say, corporate reality is that;

1/ Rising labour costs WILL move investment further east. Ukraine is pretty hot right now, for example. If Poland is lucky, and gets its PR and infrastructure sorted, it might be able to carve out a niche as the next India. (high end techy stuff) That's unless China gets there first.

2/ If this global 'credit crunch' doesn't get sorted fast then there's no point worrying anyway. Investment will be down - everywhere.

3/ Logistics has been a big driver of FDI in recent years based on simple geography. Unless this garbage road network really does start to improve we might easily lose that as well.

Apart from that, everything's fine. :)

michael farris said...

Miners are probably a relatively ... minor concern. They make a lot of noice but IME aren't very popular among most of the public (who perceive them as having been too catered to in the past).

beatroot said...

Mike – miners are a minority these days, but the set precedents. This government has signaled that it will ‘give more to public workers who are weak, not to stronger groups…’ etc. Now that probably means not to organized labour etc. So the next few years will be characterized by strikes and labour unrest. This will also be linked to any privatization program that emerges.

The ‘credit crunch’ thing will have effects for the next two or three years. World growth will slow down. So the prospect of Poland having an ‘Irish economic miracle’…which probably means high continued high growth at a greater pace than it has had already over the last two three years are slim.

The key to rising wages in Poland is increasing productivity, which is linked to increased investment, skills base etc. Can Poland attract that investment and labour base?


Anonymous said...

If there was an easy way to invest in Polish stocks or mutual funds from the US without all the rigamarole with management and other fees, I'd do it.

And even then, the Polish government should an effort vis-a-vis Polish American English language newspapers to try to attract investors. But they seem clueless.

Anonymous said...

Anonymous said: “Having known Jan Nowak personally, I can tell you that he supported that”

If you have an opinion of your own please state it, presuming to state the opinions of people who have passed away to a present controversy is idiotic and offensive.

The “jannowak57” has no relationship or relevance to any real person or historic personage it is simply an alternative to using the annoying and confusing “Anonymous” label. It is a label from the Warsaw telephone book in the same sense that “John Smith” would be from the New York telephone book.

The issue at hand is the appropriate response to those that have committed crimes against the Polish people; you have failed to respond to the issue. Is there something in your family or personal background “comrade” that you would like to discuss?