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Polish Central Bank Increases 2012 Inflation Forecast

Poland’s central bank raised its forecast for inflation this year while predicting slower economic growth in 2012 and 2013 in the latest projections prepared by its research unit, the Warsaw-based Narodowy Bank Polski said in a statement after keeping interest rates unchanged today.

The central bank said 2012 inflation will average from 3.6 percent to 4.5 percent, compared with its previous projection in November of 2.5 percent to 3.9 percent. Price growth will slow to a range from 2.2 percent to 3.6 percent in 2013, compared with an earlier 2.2 percent to 3.7 percent projection, according to the central bank.

The price-growth forecasts incorporated data available through Jan. 24. If data released since then had been included, the inflation projection for this year would be lowered by 0.3 to 0.4 percentage points, and for 2013 by 0.2 to 0.3 percentage points, according to the Monetary Policy Council’s statement.

The rate-setting panel decided to include this adjustment “as a kind of annex” to the projections prepared by the central bank’s research institute, Governor Belka told reporters at a news briefing. He said the adjustments produce a “significantly lower path” for inflation.

The NBP said it forecast economic growth at between 2.2 percent and 3.8 percent this year, compared with an earlier view of growth between 2.0 percent and 4.1 percent. Its forecast for 2013 economic growth was 1.1 percent to 3.5 percent, compared with 1.5 percent to 4 percent in the November projection.

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