Conference following the September meeting of the Monetary Policy Council
At its September meeting, the Monetary Policy Council decided to leave the NBP in-terest rates unchanged.
The Monetary Policy Council, which held its meeting on 2 and 3 September, decided to keep the NBP interest rates at the present level. Thus, the reference rate continues at 2.50%, the lombard rate at 4%, and the rediscount rate at 2.75%.
– “We were prevented from taking the decision [to change the interest rates] by the uncertainty as to the situation around Poland. Therefore, we decided to wait a little longer, also for further monthly data to come in” – said Professor Marek Belka during the press conference after the MPC meeting. He recalled the forward guidance statement made at one of the previous press conferences according to which the interest rates would not change until the end of 2014 Q4. Professor Belka emphasized that the Council would not wait for the November inflation and GDP projection to take a decision on possible interest rate cuts.
Asked about the impact of the political crisis in Ukraine on the economic situation in Poland, the NBP President said: - “The economic downturn in the euro area has a much greater impact on the Polish economy than the events in Ukraine. This economic down-turn is Poland’s biggest problem. Whereas the situation in Ukraine is a source of concern”. “I would not overestimate the influence of the Ukraine-Russia conflict on the Polish econ-omy. It is rather a question of the sentiment of consumers and entrepreneurs” added Pro-fessor Belka.
Among the questions asked, there were also questions concerning deflation – how long it will last and how deep it will be. – „Let us wait for the November projection and the policy adjustment that will be made at that time. So far the inflation path has slightly lowered” clarified President Marek Belka. Asked about the weakened GDP growth, he said that this phenomenon is not a cause for concern. The only thing that may raise ques-tions is the structure of GDP growth, e.g. a significant build-up of inventories.
The press release issued by the MPC after the September meeting states, however, that „if the incoming data confirm weakening of economic activity and an increase in risk of inflation remaining below the target in the medium term, the Council will start an adjust-ment of monetary policy”.
The conference was attended, apart from the Chairman of the Council, by Professor Adam Glapiński and Dr Andrzej Rzońca.
The next MPC meeting is scheduled to be held on 7-8 October 2014.