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Polish business no longer looking forward to the euro

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As little as just 36% of leaders of mid-sized and large businesses would want Poland to adopt the European currency. The zloty is looking increasingly attractive, mainly due to its stability.

The past 10 years have brought a profound change in the attitudes among the leaders of Polish businesses to the question of Poland joining the Eurozone. According to the latest edition of Grant Thornton’s survey (conducted in September 2020), at present as little as 36 per cent of mid-sized and large privately-held businesses in Poland would like to see the country adopt the euro. This is the lowest figure in the 10-year history of the survey and 6 percentage points less than the previous record low of 2019. At the same time, the percentage of those opposed to adopting the euro is on the rise – up from 11 per cent in 2010 to 44 per cent in 2020 – as is the rate of businesses without a preference for either currency (up from 4 to 19 per cent).

The business community is looking increasingly favourably upon the zloty, mainly because over the past few years its value has significantly stabilised. In 2019, the average monthly EUR/PLN exchange rate volatility was just 3.7 per cent, which is the lowest ever, and as much as five times less than in the record-high year 2009 (close to 18 per cent). Admittedly, the coronavirus pandemic has meant that in 2020 the exchange rate volatility has gone up to 5.3 per cent, but this is still one of the lowest figures in history. Even amid a global pandemic, accompanied by a severe worldwide recession, the zloty is more stable than on average in the past.

Grzegorz Taraszkiewicz-Sirocki

Associate Partner Financial Risk Management

The low volatility of the zloty relative to the euro means that Polish entrepreneurs – for the first time since the 1990s when the central bank abandoned the currency peg – get a break from the problems related to currency risk. Even at a time of major economic upheaval brought about by the coronavirus pandemic, the EUR/PLN exchange rate has seen relatively minor fluctuation. Therefore, some other, non-business related factors probably come into play, e.g. a shift in political attitudes across Polish society or changing opinions on the merits of European integration.

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