An economic analysis of the response of Polish agriculture to Poland's economic transition to a free market economy.
This thesis analyses the economic response of the Polish agricultural sector to the post 1989
political and economic reforms. The research adopts a two tiered spatial structure that utilises
the Polish economic responsefrom both the national and regional perspectives. At the national
level, the overriding concern is the economic performance of the Polish farming sector and its
affiliated industries during the country's transition from a centrally planned to a more marketorientated
economy. The thesis includes an evaluation of a number of inter-related variables
including ownership rights, the role of research, technology and development, the availability
of private andpublic sources of investment and rural infrastructure, the implications of current
EU-Poland trade agreements and increasing trade competitiveness.
The centrepiece of this research is an econometric analysis of Poland's primary sector
using the Cobb Douglas prcxiuctionfunction. In short, the model is a production-based, supplyside
analysis of the relationship between agricultural output and inputs, evaluating
econometrically the determinants of Polish national and regional arable supply (1989-1993).
The empirical component of the research programme uses published and unpublished Polish
secondary agricultural and meteorological data; interview material gathered from European
Union officials, Polish central and local government representatives, academics.farmers and
state sector managers. Localised information gathered in two study areas in Poland during 1993
and 1994 provides further useful insights into the local impact of economic reforms.
These theoretical and empirical inputs allow a two tier analysis of the response of Polish
farming to the transition process. Thefirst focuses upon issues surrounding economic transition
and itsfuture implications for Polish agricultural production. The second considers the general
role of the primary sector in socio-economic development. This empirical research, therefore,
synthesises various aspects of agricultural development theory within the present climate of
Central and Eastern European economic change.