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Poland vs. Germany

Introduction

PolandGermany
Background"Poland's history as a state began near the middle of the 10th century. By the mid-16th century, the Polish-Lithuanian Commonwealth ruled a vast tract of land in Central and Eastern Europe. During the 18th century, internal disorders weakened the nation, and in a series of agreements between 1772 and 1795, Russia, Prussia, and Austria partitioned Poland among themselves. Poland regained its independence in 1918 only to be overrun by Germany and the Soviet Union in World War II. It became a Soviet satellite state following the war, but its government was comparatively tolerant and progressive. Labor turmoil in 1980 led to the formation of the independent trade union ""Solidarity"" that over time became a political force with over 10 million members. Free elections in 1989 and 1990 won Solidarity control of the parliament and the presidency, bringing the communist era to a close. A ""shock therapy"" program during the early 1990s enabled the country to transform its economy into one of the most robust in Central Europe. Poland joined NATO in 1999 and the EU in 2004. With its transformation to a democratic, market-oriented country largely completed and with large investments in defense, energy, and other infrastructure, Poland is an increasingly active member of Euro-Atlantic organizations.
"
As Europe's largest economy and second most populous nation (after Russia), Germany is a key member of the continent's economic, political, and defense organizations. European power struggles immersed Germany in two devastating World Wars in the first half of the 20th century and left the country occupied by the victorious Allied powers of the US, UK, France, and the Soviet Union in 1945. With the advent of the Cold War, two German states were formed in 1949: the western Federal Republic of Germany (FRG) and the eastern German Democratic Republic (GDR). The democratic FRG embedded itself in key western economic and security organizations, the EC, which became the EU, and NATO, while the communist GDR was on the front line of the Soviet-led Warsaw Pact. The decline of the USSR and the end of the Cold War allowed for German reunification in 1990. Since then, Germany has expended considerable funds to bring eastern productivity and wages up to western standards. In January 1999, Germany and 10 other EU countries introduced a common European exchange currency, the euro.

Geography

PolandGermany
LocationCentral Europe, east of Germany
Central Europe, bordering the Baltic Sea and the North Sea, between the Netherlands and Poland, south of Denmark
Geographic coordinates52 00 N, 20 00 E
51 00 N, 9 00 E
Map referencesEurope
Europe
Areatotal: 312,685 sq km
land: 304,255 sq km
water: 8,430 sq km
total: 357,022 sq km
land: 348,672 sq km
water: 8,350 sq km
Area - comparativeabout twice the size of Georgia; slightly smaller than New Mexico
three times the size of Pennsylvania; slightly smaller than Montana
Land boundariestotal: 3,071 km
border countries (7): Belarus 418 km, Czech Republic 796 km, Germany 467 km, Lithuania 104 km, Russia (Kaliningrad Oblast) 210 km, Slovakia 541 km, Ukraine 535 km
total: 3,714 km
border countries (9): Austria 801 km, Belgium 133 km, Czech Republic 704 km, Denmark 140 km, France 418 km, Luxembourg 128 km, Netherlands 575 km, Poland 467 km, Switzerland 348 km
Coastline440 km
2,389 km
Maritime claimsterritorial sea: 12 nm
exclusive economic zone: defined by international treaties
territorial sea: 12 nm
exclusive economic zone: 200 nm
continental shelf: 200-m depth or to the depth of exploitation
Climatetemperate with cold, cloudy, moderately severe winters with frequent precipitation; mild summers with frequent showers and thundershowers
temperate and marine; cool, cloudy, wet winters and summers; occasional warm mountain (foehn) wind
Terrainmostly flat plain; mountains along southern border
lowlands in north, uplands in center, Bavarian Alps in south
Elevation extremesmean elevation: 173 m
elevation extremes: lowest point: near Raczki Elblaskie -2 m
highest point: Rysy 2,499 m
mean elevation: 263 m
elevation extremes: lowest point: Neuendorf bei Wilster -3.54 m
highest point: Zugspitze 2,963 m
Natural resourcescoal, sulfur, copper, natural gas, silver, lead, salt, amber, arable land
coal, lignite, natural gas, iron ore, copper, nickel, uranium, potash, salt, construction materials, timber, arable land
Land useagricultural land: 48.2%
arable land 36.2%; permanent crops 1.3%; permanent pasture 10.7%
forest: 30.6%
other: 21.2% (2011 est.)
agricultural land: 48%
arable land 34.1%; permanent crops 0.6%; permanent pasture 13.3%
forest: 31.8%
other: 20.2% (2011 est.)
Irrigated land970 sq km (2012)
6,500 sq km (2012)
Natural hazardsflooding
flooding
Environment - current issuesdecreased emphasis on heavy industry and increased environmental concern by post-communist governments has improved environment; air pollution remains serious because of emissions from coal-fired power plants and the resulting acid rain has caused forest damage; water pollution from industrial and municipal sources is also a problem, as is disposal of hazardous wastes
emissions from coal-burning utilities and industries contribute to air pollution; acid rain, resulting from sulfur dioxide emissions, is damaging forests; pollution in the Baltic Sea from raw sewage and industrial effluents from rivers in eastern Germany; hazardous waste disposal; government established a mechanism for ending the use of nuclear power by 2022; government working to meet EU commitment to identify nature preservation areas in line with the EU's Flora, Fauna, and Habitat directive
Environment - international agreementsparty to: Air Pollution, Antarctic-Environmental Protocol, Antarctic-Marine Living Resources, Antarctic Seals, Antarctic Treaty, Biodiversity, Climate Change, Climate Change-Kyoto Protocol, Desertification, Endangered Species, Environmental Modification, Hazardous Wastes, Law of the Sea, Marine Dumping, Ozone Layer Protection, Ship Pollution, Wetlands
signed, but not ratified: Air Pollution-Nitrogen Oxides, Air Pollution-Persistent Organic Pollutants, Air Pollution-Sulfur 94
party to: Air Pollution, Air Pollution-Nitrogen Oxides, Air Pollution-Persistent Organic Pollutants, Air Pollution-Sulfur 85, Air Pollution-Sulfur 94, Air Pollution-Volatile Organic Compounds, Antarctic-Environmental Protocol, Antarctic-Marine Living Resources, Antarctic Seals, Antarctic Treaty, Biodiversity, Climate Change, Climate Change-Kyoto Protocol, Desertification, Endangered Species, Environmental Modification, Hazardous Wastes, Law of the Sea, Marine Dumping, Ozone Layer Protection, Ship Pollution, Tropical Timber 83, Tropical Timber 94, Wetlands, Whaling
signed, but not ratified: none of the selected agreements
Geography - notehistorically, an area of conflict because of flat terrain and the lack of natural barriers on the North European Plain
strategic location on North European Plain and along the entrance to the Baltic Sea; most major rivers in Germany - the Rhine, Weser, Oder, Elbe - flow northward; the Danube, which originates in the Black Forest, flows eastward
Population distributionpopulation concentrated in the southern (Krakow) and central (Warsaw, Lodz) areas, with an extension to the northern coastal city of Gdansk
most populous country in Europe; a fairly even distribution throughout most of the country, with urban areas attracting larger and denser populations, particularly in the far western part of the industrial state of North Rhine-Westphalia

Demographics

PolandGermany
Population38,523,261 (July 2016 est.)
80,722,792 (July 2016 est.)
Age structure0-14 years: 14.72% (male 2,915,840/female 2,754,098)
15-24 years: 11.11% (male 2,195,587/female 2,082,634)
25-54 years: 43.5% (male 8,456,789/female 8,301,167)
55-64 years: 14.42% (male 2,623,838/female 2,931,215)
65 years and over: 16.26% (male 2,460,648/female 3,801,445) (2016 est.)
0-14 years: 12.83% (male 5,317,183/female 5,040,664)
15-24 years: 10.22% (male 4,203,985/female 4,044,789)
25-54 years: 40.96% (male 16,721,667/female 16,345,911)
55-64 years: 14.23% (male 5,695,117/female 5,788,493)
65 years and over: 21.76% (male 7,709,799/female 9,855,184) (2016 est.)
Median agetotal: 40.3 years
male: 38.6 years
female: 42 years (2016 est.)
total: 46.8 years
male: 45.7 years
female: 47.9 years (2016 est.)
Population growth rate-0.11% (2016 est.)
-0.16% (2016 est.)
Birth rate9.6 births/1,000 population (2016 est.)
8.5 births/1,000 population (2016 est.)
Death rate10.3 deaths/1,000 population (2016 est.)
11.6 deaths/1,000 population (2016 est.)
Net migration rate-0.4 migrant(s)/1,000 population (2016 est.)
1.5 migrant(s)/1,000 population (2016 est.)
Sex ratioat birth: 1.06 male(s)/female
0-14 years: 1.06 male(s)/female
15-24 years: 1.05 male(s)/female
25-54 years: 1.02 male(s)/female
55-64 years: 0.9 male(s)/female
65 years and over: 0.64 male(s)/female
total population: 0.94 male(s)/female (2016 est.)
at birth: 1.06 male(s)/female
0-14 years: 1.05 male(s)/female
15-24 years: 1.04 male(s)/female
25-54 years: 1.02 male(s)/female
55-64 years: 0.98 male(s)/female
65 years and over: 0.78 male(s)/female
total population: 0.97 male(s)/female (2016 est.)
Infant mortality ratetotal: 4.5 deaths/1,000 live births
male: 4.8 deaths/1,000 live births
female: 4 deaths/1,000 live births (2016 est.)
total: 3.4 deaths/1,000 live births
male: 3.7 deaths/1,000 live births
female: 3.1 deaths/1,000 live births (2016 est.)
Life expectancy at birthtotal population: 77.6 years
male: 73.7 years
female: 81.7 years (2016 est.)
total population: 80.7 years
male: 78.4 years
female: 83.1 years (2016 est.)
Total fertility rate1.34 children born/woman (2016 est.)
1.44 children born/woman (2016 est.)
HIV/AIDS - adult prevalence rate0.07% (2014 est.)
0.15% (2013 est.)
Nationalitynoun: Pole(s)
adjective: Polish
noun: German(s)
adjective: German
Ethnic groupsPolish 96.9%, Silesian 1.1%, German 0.2%, Ukrainian 0.1%, other and unspecified 1.7%
note: represents ethnicity declared first (2011 est.)
German 91.5%, Turkish 2.4%, other 6.1% (made up largely of Polish, Italian, Romanian, Syrian, and Greek)
HIV/AIDS - people living with HIV/AIDSNA
77,500 (2013 est.)
ReligionsCatholic 87.2% (includes Roman Catholic 86.9% and Greek Catholic, Armenian Catholic, and Byzantine-Slavic Catholic .3%), Orthodox 1.3% (almost all are Polish Autocephalous Orthodox), Protestant 0.4% (mainly Augsburg Evangelical and Pentacostal), other 0.4% (includes Jehovah's Witness, Buddhist, Hare Krishna, Gaudiya Vaishnavism, Muslim, Jewish, Mormon), unspecified 10.8% (2012 est.)
Roman Catholic 29%, Protestant 27%, Muslim 4.4%, Orthodox Christian 1.9%, other 1.7%, none or members of unrecorded religious groups 36% (2015 est.)
HIV/AIDS - deathsNA
400 (2013 est.)
LanguagesPolish (official) 98.2%, Silesian 1.4%, other 1.1%, unspecified 1.3%
note: data represents the language spoken at home; shares sum to more than 100% because some respondents gave more than one answer on the census; Poland ratified the European Charter for Regional or Minority Languages in 2009 recognizing Kashub as a regional language, Czech, Hebrew, Yiddish, Belarusian, Lithuanian, German, Armenian, Russian, Slovak, and Ukrainian as national minority languages, and Karaim, Lemko, Romani (Polska Roma and Bergitka Roma), and Tatar as ethnic minority languages (2011 est.)
German (official)
note: Danish, Frisian, Sorbian, and Romani are official minority languages; Low German, Danish, North Frisian, Sater Frisian, Lower Sorbian, Upper Sorbian, and Romani are recognized as regional languages under the European Charter for Regional or Minority Languages
School life expectancy (primary to tertiary education)total: 16 years
male: 16 years
female: 17 years (2013)
total: 17 years
male: 17 years
female: 17 years (2015)
Education expenditures4.9% of GDP (2013)
4.9% of GDP (2013)
Urbanizationurban population: 60.5% of total population (2015)
rate of urbanization: -0.1% annual rate of change (2010-15 est.)
urban population: 75.3% of total population (2015)
rate of urbanization: 0.16% annual rate of change (2010-15 est.)
Drinking water sourceimproved:
urban: 99.3% of population
rural: 96.9% of population
total: 98.3% of population
unimproved:
urban: 0.7% of population
rural: 3.1% of population
total: 1.7% of population (2015 est.)
improved:
urban: 100% of population
rural: 100% of population
total: 100% of population
unimproved:
urban: 0% of population
rural: 0% of population
total: 0% of population (2015 est.)
Sanitation facility accessimproved:
urban: 97.5% of population
rural: 96.7% of population
total: 97.2% of population
unimproved:
urban: 2.5% of population
rural: 3.3% of population
total: 2.8% of population (2015 est.)
improved:
urban: 99.3% of population
rural: 99% of population
total: 99.2% of population
unimproved:
urban: 0.7% of population
rural: 1% of population
total: 0.8% of population (2015 est.)
Major cities - populationWARSAW (capital) 1.722 million; Krakow 760,000 (2015)
BERLIN (capital) 3.563 million; Hamburg 1.831 million; Munich 1.438 million; Cologne 1.037 million (2015)
Maternal mortality rate3 deaths/100,000 live births (2015 est.)
6 deaths/100,000 live births (2015 est.)
Health expenditures6.4% of GDP (2014)
11.3% of GDP (2014)
Physicians density2.27 physicians/1,000 population (2014)
4.13 physicians/1,000 population (2014)
Hospital bed density6.5 beds/1,000 population (2011)
8.2 beds/1,000 population (2011)
Obesity - adult prevalence rate27% (2014)
22.7% (2014)
Mother's mean age at first birth27.2 years (2013 est.)
29.2 years (2012 est.)
Dependency ratiostotal dependency ratio: 43.8
youth dependency ratio: 21.5
elderly dependency ratio: 22.3
potential support ratio: 4.5 (2015 est.)
total dependency ratio: 51.8
youth dependency ratio: 19.6
elderly dependency ratio: 32.2
potential support ratio: 3.1 (2015 est.)

Government

PolandGermany
Country name"conventional long form: Republic of Poland
conventional short form: Poland
local long form: Rzeczpospolita Polska
local short form: Polska
etymology: name derives from the Polanians, a west Slavic tribe that united several surrounding Slavic groups (9th-10th centuries A.D.) and who passed on their name to the country; the name of the tribe likely comes from the Slavic ""pole"" (field or plain), indicating the flat nature of their country
"
"conventional long form: Federal Republic of Germany
conventional short form: Germany
local long form: Bundesrepublik Deutschland
local short form: Deutschland
former: German Empire, German Republic, German Reich
etymology: the Gauls (Celts) of Western Europe may have referred to the newly arriving Germanic tribes who settled in neighboring areas east of the Rhine during the first centuries B.C. as ""Germani,"" a term the Romans adopted as ""Germania""; the native designation ""Deutsch"" comes from the Old High German ""diutisc"" meaning ""of the people""
"
Government typeparliamentary republic
federal parliamentary republic
Capitalname: Warsaw
geographic coordinates: 52 15 N, 21 00 E
time difference: UTC+1 (6 hours ahead of Washington, DC, during Standard Time)
daylight saving time: +1hr, begins last Sunday in March; ends last Sunday in October
name: Berlin
geographic coordinates: 52 31 N, 13 24 E
time difference: UTC+1 (6 hours ahead of Washington, DC, during Standard Time)
daylight saving time: +1hr, begins last Sunday in March; ends last Sunday in October
Administrative divisions16 provinces (wojewodztwa, singular - wojewodztwo); Dolnoslaskie (Lower Silesia), Kujawsko-Pomorskie (Kuyavia-Pomerania), Lodzkie (Lodz), Lubelskie (Lublin), Lubuskie (Lubusz), Malopolskie (Lesser Poland), Mazowieckie (Masovia), Opolskie (Opole), Podkarpackie (Subcarpathia), Podlaskie, Pomorskie (Pomerania), Slaskie (Silesia), Swietokrzyskie (Holy Cross), Warminsko-Mazurskie (Warmia-Masuria), Wielkopolskie (Greater Poland), Zachodniopomorskie (West Pomerania)
16 states (Laender, singular - Land); Baden-Wuerttemberg, Bayern (Bavaria), Berlin, Brandenburg, Bremen, Hamburg, Hessen (Hesse), Mecklenburg-Vorpommern (Mecklenburg-Western Pomerania), Niedersachsen (Lower Saxony), Nordrhein-Westfalen (North Rhine-Westphalia), Rheinland-Pfalz (Rhineland-Palatinate), Saarland, Sachsen (Saxony), Sachsen-Anhalt (Saxony-Anhalt), Schleswig-Holstein, Thueringen (Thuringia); note - Bayern, Sachsen, and Thueringen refer to themselves as free states (Freistaaten, singular - Freistaat), while Hamburg prides itself on being a Free and Hanseatic City (Freie und Hansestadt)
Independence11 November 1918 (republic proclaimed); notable earlier dates: 966 (adoption of Christianity, traditional founding date), 1 July 1569 (Polish-Lithuanian Commonwealth created)
18 January 1871 (establishment of the German Empire); divided into four zones of occupation (UK, US, USSR, and France) in 1945 following World War II; Federal Republic of Germany (FRG or West Germany) proclaimed on 23 May 1949 and included the former UK, US, and French zones; German Democratic Republic (GDR or East Germany) proclaimed on 7 October 1949 and included the former USSR zone; West Germany and East Germany unified on 3 October 1990; all four powers formally relinquished rights on 15 March 1991; notable earlier dates: 10 August 843 (Eastern Francia established from the division of the Carolingian Empire); 2 February 962 (crowning of OTTO I, recognized as the first Holy Roman Emperor)
National holidayConstitution Day, 3 May (1791)
Unity Day, 3 October (1990)
Constitutionhistory: several previous; latest adopted 2 April 1997, approved by referendum 25 May 1997, effective 17 October 1997
amendments: proposed by at least one-fifth of Sejm deputies, by the Senate, or by the president of the republic; passage requires at least two-thirds majority vote in the Sejm and absolute majority vote in the Senate; amendments to articles relating to sovereignty, personal freedoms, and constitutional amendment procedures also require passage by majority vote in a referendum; amended 2006, 2009, 2015 (2016)
history: previous 1919 (Weimar Constitution); latest drafted 10 to 23 August 1948, approved 12 May 1949, promulgated 23 May 1949, entered into force 24 May 1949
amendments: proposed by Parliament; passage and enactment into law require two-thirds majority vote by both the Bundesrat (upper house) and the Bundestag (lower house) of Parliament; articles including those on basic human rights and freedoms cannot be amended; amended many times, last in 2012 (2016)
Legal systemcivil law system; judicial review of legislative, administrative, and other governmental acts; constitutional law rulings of the Constitutional Tribunal are final
civil law system
Suffrage18 years of age; universal
18 years of age; universal
Executive branchchief of state: President Andrzej DUDA (since 6 August 2015)
head of government: Prime Minister Beata SZYDLO (since 16 November 2015); Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Culture and National Heritage Piotr GLINSKI (since 16 November 2015), Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Science and Higher Education Jaroslaw GOWIN (since 16 November 2015), and Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Development Mateusz MORAWIECKI (since 16 November 2015)
cabinet: Council of Ministers proposed by the prime minister, appointed by the president, and approved by the Sejm
elections/appointments: president directly elected by absolute majority popular vote in 2 rounds if needed for a 5-year term (eligible for a second term); election last held on 10 and 24 May 2015 (next to be held in 2020); prime minister, deputy prime ministers, and Council of Ministers appointed by the president and confirmed by the Sejm
election results: Andrzej DUDA elected president; percent of vote in runoff - Andrzej DUDA 51.5%, Bronislaw KOMOROWSKI (independent) 48.5%
chief of state: Frank-Walter STEINMEIER (since 19 March 2017; inaugurated 22 March 2017)
head of government: Chancellor Angela MERKEL (since 22 November 2005)
cabinet: Cabinet or Bundesminister (Federal Ministers) recommended by the chancellor, appointed by the president
elections/appointments: president indirectly elected for a 5-year term (eligible for a second term) by a Federal Convention consisting of the 630-member Federal Parliament (Bundestag) and 630 delegates indirectly elected by the state parliaments; election last held on 12 February 2017 (next to be held February 2022); chancellor indirectly elected by absolute majority by the Federal Parliament for a 4-year term; Federal Parliament vote for chancellor last held on 17 December 2013 (next to be held following the general election, 24 September 2017)
election results: Frank-Walter STEINMEIER elected president; Federal Convention vote count - Frank-Walter STEINMEIER (SPD) 931, Christopher BUTTERWEGGE (Left Party) 128, Albrecht GLASER (Alternative for Germany AfD) 42, Alexander HOLD (Free Voters FW) 25, Engelbert SONNEBORN (Pirates Party) 10; Angela MERKEL (CDU) reelected chancellor; Federal Parliament vote - 462 for, 150 against, 49 abstentions
Legislative branchdescription: bicameral legislature consists of the Senate or Senat (100 seats; members directly elected in single-seat constituencies by simple majority vote to serve 4-year terms) and the Sejm (460 seats; members directly elected in multi-seat constituencies by proportional representation vote to serve 4-year terms); note - the designation National Assembly or Zgromadzenie Narodowe is only used on those rare occasions when the two houses meet jointly
note: the German minority is exempt from the 5% threshold requirement for seats to the Sejm
elections: Senate - last held on 25 October 2015 (next to be held in October 2019); Sejm - last held on 25 October 2015 (next to be held in October 2019)
election results: Senate - percent of vote by party - NA; seats by party - PiS 62, PO 33, PSL 1, independents 4; Sejm - percent of vote by party - PiS 37.6%, PO 24.1%, K15 8.8%, N 7.6%, PSL 5.1% other 16.8%; seats by party - PiS 234, PO 138, K15 40, N 29, PSL 16, independent 2, German minority 1
description: bicameral Parliament or Parlament consists of the Federal Council or Bundesrat (69 seats; members appointed by each of the 16 state governments) and the Federal Diet or Bundestag (631 seats - total seats can vary each electoral term; approximately one-half of members directly elected in multi-seat constituencies by proportional representation vote and approximately one-half directly elected in single-seat constituencies by simple majority vote; members serve 4-year terms)
elections: Bundestag - last held on 22 September 2013 (next to be held 24 September 2017); most all postwar German governments have been coalitions; note - there are no elections for the Bundesrat; composition is determined by the composition of the state-level governments; the composition of the Bundesrat has the potential to change any time one of the 16 states holds an election
election results: Bundestag - percent of vote by party - CDU/CSU 41.5%, SPD 25.7%, Left 8.6%, Greens 8.4%, FDP 4.8%, other 10.9%; seats by party - CDU/CSU 311, SPD 193, Left 64, Greens 63
Judicial branchhighest court(s): Supreme Court or Sad Najwyzszy (consists of the president of the Supreme Court and 116 judges organized in criminal, civil, labor and social insurance, and military chambers)
judge selection and term of office: president of the Supreme Court nominated by the General Assembly of the Supreme Court and selected by the president of Poland; other judges nominated by the 25-member National Judiciary Council, and appointed by the president of Poland; judges appointed until retirement, usually at age 65, but tenure can be extended
subordinate courts: Constitutional Tribunal; State Tribunal, administrative courts; regional and appellate courts subdivided into military, civil, criminal, labor, and family courts
highest court(s): Federal Court of Justice (court consists of 127 judges including the court president, vice-presidents, presiding judges, and other judges, and organized into 25 Senates subdivided into 12 civil panels, 5 criminal panels, and 8 special panels; Federal Constitutional Court or Bundesverfassungsgericht (consists of 2 Senates each subdivided into 3 chambers, each with a chairman and 8 members)
judge selection and term of office: Federal Court of Justice judges selected by the Judges Election Committee, which consists of the Secretaries of Justice from each of the 16 federated States and 16 members appointed by the Federal Parliament; judges appointed by the president of Germany; judges serve until mandatory retirement at age 65; Federal Constitutional Court judges - one-half elected by the House of Representatives and one-half by the Senate; judges appointed for 12-year terms with mandatory retirement at age 68
subordinate courts: Federal Administrative Court; Federal Finance Court; Federal Labor Court; Federal Social Court; each of the 16 German states or Land has its own constitutional court and a hierarchy of ordinary (civil, criminal, family) and specialized (administrative, finance, labor, social) courts
Political parties and leaders"Civic Platform or PO [Grzegorz SCHETYNA, chairperson; Slawomir NEUMANN, parliamentary caucus leader]
Coalition for the Renewal of the Republic-Liberty and Hope or KORWiN [Janusz KORWIN-MIKKE, chairman]
Democratic Left Alliance or SLD [Wlodzimierz CZARZASTY, chairman]
German Minority of Lower Silesia or MNSO [Ryszard GALLA, representative]
Kukiz 15 [Pawel KUKIZ; chairman, parliamentary caucus leader]
Law and Justice or PiS [Jaroslaw KACZYNSKI, chairman; Ryszard TERLECKI, parliamentary caucus leader]
Nowoczesna (""Modern"") or N [Ryszard PETRU; chairman, parliamentary caucus leader]
Polish People's Party or PSL [Wladyslaw KOSINIAK-KAMYSZ; chairman, parliamentary caucus leader]
Razem (Together) [no party chair, led by nine-member management board]
"
Alliance '90/Greens [Cem OEZDEMIR and Simone PETER]
Alternative for Germany or AfD [Frauke PETRY and Joerg MEUTHEN]
Christian Democratic Union or CDU [Angela MERKEL]
Christian Social Union or CSU [Horst SEEHOFER]
Free Democratic Party or FDP [Christian LINDNER]
Left Party or Die Linke [Katja KIPPING and Bernd RIEXINGER]
Social Democratic Party or SPD [Martin SCHULZ]
Political pressure groups and leaders"All Poland Trade Union Alliance or OPZZ [Jan GUZ] (trade union)
Independent Self-Governing Trade Union ""Solidarity"" [Piotr DUDA]
Roman Catholic Church [Archbishop Wojciech POLAK, Archbishop Stanislaw GADECKI]
"
other: business associations and employers' organizations
trade unions; religious, immigrant, expellee, and veterans groups
International organization participationArctic Council (observer), Australia Group, BIS, BSEC (observer), CBSS, CD, CE, CEI, CERN, EAPC, EBRD, ECB, EIB, ESA, EU, FAO, IAEA, IBRD, ICAO, ICC (national committees), ICCt, ICRM, IDA, IEA, IFC, IFRCS, IHO, ILO, IMF, IMO, IMSO, Interpol, IOC, IOM, IPU, ISO, ITSO, ITU, ITUC (NGOs), MIGA, MONUSCO, NATO, NEA, NSG, OAS (observer), OECD, OIF (observer), OPCW, OSCE, PCA, Schengen Convention, UN, UNCTAD, UNESCO, UNHCR, UNIDO, UNMIL, UNMISS, UNOCI, UNWTO, UPU, WCO, WFTU (NGOs), WHO, WIPO, WMO, WTO, ZC
ADB (nonregional member), AfDB (nonregional member), Arctic Council (observer), Australia Group, BIS, BSEC (observer), CBSS, CD, CDB, CE, CERN, EAPC, EBRD, ECB, EIB, EITI (implementing country), EMU, ESA, EU, FAO, FATF, G-5, G-7, G-8, G-10, G-20, IADB, IAEA, IBRD, ICAO, ICC (national committees), ICCt, ICRM, IDA, IEA, IFAD, IFC, IFRCS, IGAD (partners), IHO, ILO, IMF, IMO, IMSO, Interpol, IOC, IOM, IPU, ISO, ITSO, ITU, ITUC (NGOs), MIGA, MINURSO, MINUSMA, NATO, NEA, NSG, OAS (observer), OECD, OPCW, OSCE, Pacific Alliance (observer), Paris Club, PCA, Schengen Convention, SELEC (observer), SICA (observer), UN, UNAMID, UNCTAD, UNESCO, UNHCR, UNIDO, UNIFIL, UNMISS, UNRWA, UNWTO, UPU, WCO, WHO, WIPO, WMO, WTO, ZC
Diplomatic representation in the USchief of mission: Ambassador Piotr WILCZEK (since October 2016)
chancery: 2640 16th Street NW, Washington, DC 20009
telephone: [1] (202) 499-1700
FAX: [1] (202) 328-6271
consulate(s) general: Chicago, Los Angeles, New York
chief of mission: Ambassador Hans Peter WITTIG (since 21 May 2014)
chancery: 4645 Reservoir Road NW, Washington, DC 20007
telephone: [1] (202) 298-4000
FAX: [1] (202) 298-4249
consulate(s) general: Atlanta, Boston, Chicago, Houston, Los Angeles, Miami, New York, San Francisco
Diplomatic representation from the USchief of mission: Ambassador Paul JONES (since 7 October 2015)
embassy: Aleje Ujazdowskie 29/31 00-540 Warsaw
mailing address: American Embassy Warsaw, US Department of State, Washington, DC 20521-5010 (pouch)
telephone: [48] (22) 504-2000
FAX: [48] (22) 504-2688
consulate(s) general: Krakow
chief of mission: Ambassador (vacant); Charge d'Affaires Kent LOGSDON (since 20 January 2017)
embassy: Pariser Platz 2
mailing address: Clayallee 170, 14191 Berlin
telephone: [49] (30) 8305-0
FAX: [49] (30) 8305-1215
consulate(s) general: Duesseldorf, Frankfurt am Main, Hamburg, Leipzig, Munich
Flag descriptiontwo equal horizontal bands of white (top) and red; colors derive from the Polish emblem - a white eagle on a red field
note: similar to the flags of Indonesia and Monaco which are red (top) and white
three equal horizontal bands of black (top), red, and gold; these colors have played an important role in German history and can be traced back to the medieval banner of the Holy Roman Emperor - a black eagle with red claws and beak on a gold field
National anthem"name: ""Mazurek Dabrowskiego"" (Dabrowski's Mazurka)
lyrics/music: Jozef WYBICKI/traditional
note: adopted 1927; the anthem, commonly known as ""Jeszcze Polska nie zginela"" (Poland Has Not Yet Perished), was written in 1797; the lyrics resonate strongly with Poles because they reflect the numerous occasions in which the nation's lands have been occupied
"
"name: ""Das Lied der Deutschen"" (Song of the Germans)
lyrics/music: August Heinrich HOFFMANN VON FALLERSLEBEN/Franz Joseph HAYDN
note: adopted 1922; the anthem, also known as ""Deutschlandlied"" (Song of Germany), was originally adopted for its connection to the March 1848 liberal revolution; following appropriation by the Nazis of the first verse, specifically the phrase, ""Deutschland, Deutschland ueber alles"" (Germany, Germany above all) to promote nationalism, it was banned after 1945; in 1952, its third verse was adopted by West Germany as its national anthem; in 1990, it became the national anthem for the reunited Germany
"
International law organization participationaccepts compulsory ICJ jurisdiction with reservations; accepts ICCt jurisdiction
accepts compulsory ICJ jurisdiction with reservations; accepts ICCt jurisdiction
National symbol(s)white eagle; national colors: white, red
golden eagle; national colors: black, red, yellow
Citizenshipcitizenship by birth: no
citizenship by descent only: both parents must be citizens of Poland
dual citizenship recognized: no
residency requirement for naturalization: 5 years
citizenship by birth: no
citizenship by descent only: at least one parent must be a German citizen or a resident alien who has lived in Germany at least 8 years
dual citizenship recognized: yes, but requires prior permission from government
residency requirement for naturalization: 8 years

Economy

PolandGermany
Economy - overviewPoland has the sixth-largest economy in the EU and has long had a reputation as a business-friendly country with largely sound macroeconomic policies. Since 1990, Poland has pursued a policy of economic liberalization. During the 2008-09 economic slowdown Poland was the only EU country to avoid a recession, in part because of the government’s loose fiscal policy combined with a commitment to rein in spending in the medium-term. However, since 2015 Warsaw’s prioritization of spending on social welfare programs has prompted investors to decrease Poland’s economic growth projections for the next few years.

The Polish economy performed well during 2014-16, with the real GDP growth rate exceeding 3%, in part because of the government’s fiscal prudence. Poland’s economic growth in 2017 is projected by some credit rating agencies to slow, however, because of Poland’s government’s increase in social spending since 2015, including the provision of cash transfers for low income families, families with more than one child, and the reduction of the retirement age which will take effect in October 2017. The government has tried to introduce new taxes and boost tax compliance to offset the costs of the social spending programs and relieve upward pressure on the budget deficit. Some credit ratings agencies estimate that Poland will exceed the EU’s 3%-of-GDP limit on budget deficits, possibly impacting its access to future EU funds.

Poland faces several systemic challenges, which include addressing some of the remaining deficiencies in its road and rail infrastructure, business environment, rigid labor code, commercial court system, government red tape, and burdensome tax system, especially for entrepreneurs. Additional long-term challenges include diversifying Poland’s energy mix, strengthening investments in innovation, research, and development, as well as stemming the outflow of educated young Poles to other EU member states, especially in light of a coming demographic contraction due to emigration, persistently low fertility rates, and the aging of the Solidarity-era baby boom generation.
The German economy - the fifth largest economy in the world in PPP terms and Europe's largest - is a leading exporter of machinery, vehicles, chemicals, and household equipment and benefits from a highly skilled labor force. Like its Western European neighbors, Germany faces significant demographic challenges to sustained long-term growth. Low fertility rates and a large increase in net immigration are increasing pressure on the country's social welfare system and necessitate structural reforms.

Reforms launched by the government of Chancellor Gerhard SCHROEDER (1998-2005), deemed necessary to address chronically high unemployment and low average growth, contributed to strong growth and falling unemployment. These advances, as well as a government subsidized, reduced working hour scheme, help explain the relatively modest increase in unemployment during the 2008-09 recession - the deepest since World War II. The German Government introduced a minimum wage in 2015 that increased to $9.79 (8.84 euros) on 1 January 2017.

Stimulus and stabilization efforts initiated in 2008 and 2009 and tax cuts introduced in Chancellor Angela MERKEL's second term increased Germany's total budget deficit - including federal, state, and municipal - to 4.1% in 2010, but slower spending and higher tax revenues reduced the deficit to 0.8% in 2011 and in 2016 Germany reached a budget surplus of 0.6%. A constitutional amendment approved in 2009 limits the federal government to structural deficits of no more than 0.35% of GDP per annum as of 2016, though the target was already reached in 2012.

The German economy suffers from low levels of investment, and a government plan to invest 15 billion euros during 2016-18, largely in infrastructure, is intended to spur needed private investment. Following the March 2011 Fukushima nuclear disaster, Chancellor Angela MERKEL announced in May 2011 that eight of the country's 17 nuclear reactors would be shut down immediately and the remaining plants would close by 2022. Germany plans to replace nuclear power largely with renewable energy, which accounted for 29.5% of gross electricity consumption in 2016, up from 9% in 2000. Before the shutdown of the eight reactors, Germany relied on nuclear power for 23% of its electricity generating capacity and 46% of its base-load electricity production. Domestic consumption, bolstered by low energy prices and a weak euro, and exports are likely to drive German GDP growth again in 2017.
GDP (purchasing power parity)$1.052 trillion (2016 est.)
$1.02 trillion (2015 est.)
$984.4 billion (2014 est.)
note: data are in 2016 dollars
$3.979 trillion (2016 est.)
$3.911 trillion (2015 est.)
$3.854 trillion (2014 est.)
note: data are in 2016 dollars
GDP - real growth rate3.1% (2016 est.)
3.7% (2015 est.)
3.3% (2014 est.)
1.7% (2016 est.)
1.5% (2015 est.)
1.6% (2014 est.)
GDP - per capita (PPP)$27,700 (2016 est.)
$26,800 (2015 est.)
$25,900 (2014 est.)
note: data are in 2016 dollars
$48,200 (2016 est.)
$47,600 (2015 est.)
$47,500 (2014 est.)
note: data are in 2016 dollars
GDP - composition by sectoragriculture: 2.7%
industry: 38.5%
services: 58.9% (2016 est.)
agriculture: 0.6%
industry: 30.3%
services: 69.1%
(2016 est.)
Population below poverty line17.6% (2015 est.)
16.7% (2015 est.)
Household income or consumption by percentage sharelowest 10%: 3%
highest 10%: 23.9% (2015 est.)
lowest 10%: 3.6%
highest 10%: 24% (2000)
Inflation rate (consumer prices)-0.8% (2016 est.)
-1% (2015 est.)
0.5% (2016 est.)
0.3% (2015 est.)
Labor force17.78 million (2016 est.)
45.3 million (2016 est.)
Labor force - by occupationagriculture: 11.5%
industry: 30.4%
services: 57.6% (2015)
agriculture: 1.4%
industry: 24.2%
services: 74.3%
(2016)
Unemployment rate9.6% (2016 est.)
10.5% (2015 est.)
4.3% (2016 est.)
4.6% (2015 est.)
Distribution of family income - Gini index30.8 (2015)
33.7 (2008)
27 (2006)
30 (1994)
Budgetrevenues: $73.4 billion
expenditures: $86.56 billion (2016 est.)
revenues: $1.523 trillion
expenditures: $1.497 trillion (2016 est.)
Industriesmachine building, iron and steel, coal mining, chemicals, shipbuilding, food processing, glass, beverages, textiles
among the world's largest and most technologically advanced producers of iron, steel, coal, cement, chemicals, machinery, vehicles, machine tools, electronics, automobiles, food and beverages, shipbuilding, textiles
Industrial production growth rate4.2% (2016 est.)
1.5% (2016 est.)
Agriculture - productspotatoes, fruits, vegetables, wheat; poultry, eggs, pork, dairy
potatoes, wheat, barley, sugar beets, fruit, cabbages; milk products; cattle, pigs, poultry
Exports$188.3 billion (2016 est.)
$190.8 billion (2015 est.)
$1.283 trillion (2016 est.)
$1.309 trillion (2015 est.)
Exports - commoditiesmachinery and transport equipment 37.8%, intermediate manufactured goods 23.7%, miscellaneous manufactured goods 17.1%, food and live animals 7.6% (2012 est.)
motor vehicles, machinery, chemicals, computer and electronic products, electrical equipment, pharmaceuticals, metals, transport equipment, foodstuffs, textiles, rubber and plastic products
Exports - partnersGermany 27.1%, UK 6.8%, Czech Republic 6.6%, France 5.5%, Italy 4.8%, Netherlands 4.4% (2015)
US 9.6%, France 8.6%, UK 7.5%, Netherlands 6.6%, China 6%, Italy 4.9%, Austria 4.8%, Poland 4.4%, Switzerland 4.2% (2015)
Imports$189.5 billion (2016 est.)
$188.4 billion (2015 est.)
$987.6 billion (2016 est.)
$1.017 trillion (2015 est.)
Imports - commoditiesmachinery and transport equipment 38%, intermediate manufactured goods 21%, chemicals 15%, minerals, fuels, lubricants, and related materials 9% (2011 est.)
machinery, data processing equipment, vehicles, chemicals, oil and gas, metals, electric equipment, pharmaceuticals, foodstuffs, agricultural products
Imports - partnersGermany 27.6%, China 7.5%, Russia 7.2%, Netherlands 5.9%, Italy 5.2%, France 4.1% (2015)
Netherlands 13.7%, France 7.6%, China 7.3%, Belgium 6%, Italy 5.2%, Poland 5%, US 4.7%, Czech Republic 4.5%, UK 4.2%, Austria 4.2%, Switzerland 4.2% (2015)
Debt - external$344.8 billion (31 December 2016 est.)
$332.2 billion (31 December 2015 est.)
$5.326 trillion (31 March 2016 est.)
$5.21 trillion (31 March 2015 est.)
Exchange rateszlotych (PLN) per US dollar -
4.056 (2016 est.)
3.7721 (2015 est.)
3.7721 (2014 est.)
3.1538 (2013 est.)
3.26 (2012 est.)
euros (EUR) per US dollar -
0.9214 (2016 est.)
0.885 (2015 est.)
0.885 (2014 est.)
0.7634 (2013 est.)
0.7752 (2012 est.)
Fiscal yearcalendar year
calendar year
Public debt44.7% of GDP (2016 est.)
45% of GDP (2015 est.)
note: data cover general government debt, and includes debt instruments issued (or owned) by government entities other than the treasury; the data include treasury debt held by foreign entities, the data include subnational entities, as well as intra-governmental debt; intra-governmental debt consists of treasury borrowings from surpluses in the social funds, such as for retirement, medical care, and unemployment; debt instruments for the social funds are not sold at public auctions
68.2% of GDP (2016 est.)
71.2% of GDP (2015 est.)
note: general government gross debt is defined in the Maastricht Treaty as consolidated general government gross debt at nominal value, outstanding at the end of the year in the following categories of government liabilities (as defined in ESA95): currency and deposits (AF.2), securities other than shares excluding financial derivatives (AF.3, excluding AF.34), and loans (AF.4); the general government sector comprises the sub-sectors of central government, state government, local government and social security funds; the series are presented as a percentage of GDP and in millions of euro; GDP used as a denominator is the gross domestic product at current market prices; data expressed in national currency are converted into euro using end-of-year exchange rates provided by the European Central Bank
Reserves of foreign exchange and gold$90.21 billion (31 December 2016 est.)
$94.91 billion (31 December 2015 est.)
$173.7 billion (31 December 2015 est.)
$173.7 billion (31 December 2015 est.)
Current Account Balance-$1.395 billion (2016 est.)
-$2.932 billion (2015 est.)
$294.3 billion (2016 est.)
$280.3 billion (2015 est.)
GDP (official exchange rate)$467.4 billion (2016 est.)
$3.495 trillion
Stock of direct foreign investment - at home$228.8 billion (31 December 2016 est.)
$221.8 billion (31 December 2015 est.)
$1.416 trillion (31 December 2016 est.)
$1.36 trillion (31 December 2015 est.)
Stock of direct foreign investment - abroad$64.62 billion (31 December 2016 est.)
$62.12 billion (31 December 2015 est.)
$2.08 trillion (31 December 2016 est.)
$1.972 trillion (31 December 2015 est.)
Market value of publicly traded shares$261.5 billion (31 December 2016 est.)
$277.4 billion (31 December 2015 est.)
$351.7 billion (31 December 2014 est.)
$1.716 trillion (31 December 2015 est.)
$1.739 trillion (31 December 2014 est.)
$1.936 trillion (31 December 2013 est.)
Central bank discount rate1.5% (31 December 2016)
2% (31 December 2015)
0.25% (31 December 2016)
0.3% (31 December 2010)
note: this is the European Central Bank's rate on the marginal lending facility, which offers overnight credit to banks in the euro area
Commercial bank prime lending rate5.1% (31 December 2016 est.)
4.92% (31 December 2015 est.)
1.7% (31 December 2016 est.)
1.84% (31 December 2015 est.)
Stock of domestic credit$344.8 billion (31 December 2016 est.)
$337.4 billion (31 December 2015 est.)
$4.327 trillion (31 December 2016 est.)
$4.452 trillion (31 December 2015 est.)
Stock of narrow money$186.6 billion (31 December 2016 est.)
$177.4 billion (31 December 2015 est.)
$2.049 trillion (31 December 2016 est.)
$1.923 trillion (31 December 2015 est.)
note: see entry for the European Union for money supply for the entire euro area; the European Central Bank (ECB) controls monetary policy for the 18 members of the Economic and Monetary Union (EMU); individual members of the EMU do not control the quantity of money circulating within their own borders
Stock of broad money$306.7 billion (31 December 2014 est.)
$318.8 billion (31 December 2013 est.)
$4.347 trillion (31 December 2014 est.)
$4.451 trillion (31 December 2013 est.)
Taxes and other revenues15.7% of GDP (2016 est.)
43.6% of GDP (2016 est.)
Budget surplus (+) or deficit (-)-2.8% of GDP (2016 est.)
0.7% of GDP (2016 est.)
Unemployment, youth ages 15-24total: 23.9%
male: 22.7%
female: 25.5% (2014 est.)
total: 7.7%
male: 8.3%
female: 7.1% (2014 est.)
GDP - composition, by end usehousehold consumption: 57.4%
government consumption: 17.8%
investment in fixed capital: 19.8%
investment in inventories: 0.8%
exports of goods and services: 50.5%
imports of goods and services: -46.3% (2016 est.)
household consumption: 53.7%
government consumption: 19.5%
investment in fixed capital: 20.1%
investment in inventories: -1%
exports of goods and services: 45.7%
imports of goods and services: -38% (2016 est.)
Gross national saving20.3% of GDP (2016 est.)
20.3% of GDP (2015 est.)
18.3% of GDP (2014 est.)
27.9% of GDP (2016 est.)
27.7% of GDP (2015 est.)
27% of GDP (2014 est.)

Energy

PolandGermany
Electricity - production150 billion kWh (2014 est.)
646.9 billion kWh (2015 est.)
Electricity - consumption142 billion kWh (2014 est.)
530.6 billion kWh (2015 est.)
Electricity - exports11 billion kWh (2014)
82 billion kWh (2016 est.)
Electricity - imports14 billion kWh (2014 est.)
26.6 billion kWh (2016 est.)
Oil - production17,140 bbl/day (2015 est.)
48,060 bbl/day (2015 est.)
Oil - imports532,300 bbl/day (2015 est.)
1.844 million bbl/day (2015 est.)
Oil - exports4,761 bbl/day (2015 est.)
6,569 bbl/day (2015 est.)
Oil - proved reserves100 million bbl (1 January 2010 est.)
100 million bbl (1 January 2016 est.)
Natural gas - proved reserves81.66 billion cu m (1 January 2016 es)
47.4 billion cu m (1 January 2016 es)
Natural gas - production3.954 billion cu m (2015 est.)
9.469 billion cu m (2014 est.)
Natural gas - consumption14.79 billion cu m (2015 est.)
79.21 billion cu m (2014 est.)
Natural gas - exports76 million cu m (2014 est.)
22.27 billion cu m (2014 est.)
Natural gas - imports11.82 billion cu m (2014 est.)
89.89 billion cu m (2014 est.)
Electricity - installed generating capacity40.34 million kW (2015 est.)
204 million kW (2014 est.)
Electricity - from fossil fuels87.1% of total installed capacity (2014 est.)
43.2% of total installed capacity (2014 est.)
Electricity - from hydroelectric plants1.7% of total installed capacity (2014 est.)
5.1% of total installed capacity (2014 est.)
Electricity - from nuclear fuels0% of total installed capacity (2014 est.)
6.3% of total installed capacity (2014 est.)
Electricity - from other renewable sources11.1% of total installed capacity (2014 est.)
41.6% of total installed capacity (2014 est.)
Refined petroleum products - production568,200 bbl/day (2015 est.)
2.175 million bbl/day (2015 est.)
Refined petroleum products - consumption536,700 bbl/day (2015 est.)
2.372 million bbl/day (2015 est.)
Refined petroleum products - exports160,100 bbl/day (2015 est.)
462,700 bbl/day (2015 est.)
Refined petroleum products - imports128,800 bbl/day (2015 est.)
785,700 bbl/day (2015 est.)
Carbon dioxide emissions from consumption of energy296 million Mt (2015 est.)
744 million Mt (2015 est.)
Electricity accesselectrification - total population: 100% (2016)
electrification - total population: 100% (2016)

Telecommunications

PolandGermany
Telephones - main lines in usetotal subscriptions: 4.245 million
subscriptions per 100 inhabitants: 11 (July 2015 est.)
total subscriptions: 45.352 million
subscriptions per 100 inhabitants: 56 (July 2015 est.)
Telephones - mobile cellulartotal: 56.838 million
subscriptions per 100 inhabitants: 147 (July 2015 est.)
total: 96.36 million
subscriptions per 100 inhabitants: 119 (July 2015 est.)
Telephone systemgeneral assessment: modernization of the telecommunications network has accelerated with market-based competition; fixed-line service, dominated by the former state-owned company, is dwarfed by the growth in mobile-cellular services
domestic: several nation-wide networks provide mobile-cellular service; coverage is generally good; fixed-line service lags in rural areas
international: country code - 48; international direct dialing with automated exchanges; satellite earth station - 1 with access to Intelsat, Eutelsat, Inmarsat, and Intersputnik (2015)
general assessment: one of the world's most technologically advanced telecommunications systems; as a result of intensive capital expenditures since reunification, the formerly backward system of the eastern part of the country, dating back to World War II, has been modernized and integrated with that of the western part
domestic: extensive system of automatic telephone exchanges connected by modern networks of fiber-optic cable, coaxial cable, microwave radio relay, and a domestic satellite system; cellular telephone service is widely available, expanding rapidly, and includes roaming service to many foreign countries
international: country code - 49; Germany's international service is excellent worldwide, consisting of extensive land and undersea cable facilities as well as earth stations in the Inmarsat, Intelsat, Eutelsat, and Intersputnik satellite systems (2015)
Internet country code.pl
.de
Internet userstotal: 26.221 million
percent of population: 68% (July 2015 est.)
total: 70.82 million
percent of population: 87.6% (July 2015 est.)
Broadcast mediastate-run public TV operates 2 national channels supplemented by 16 regional channels and several niche channels; privately owned entities operate several national TV networks and a number of special interest channels; many privately owned channels broadcasting locally; roughly half of all households are linked to either satellite or cable TV systems providing access to foreign television networks; state-run public radio operates 5 national networks and 17 regional radio stations; 2 privately owned national radio networks, several commercial stations broadcasting to multiple cities, and many privately owned local radio stations (2007)
a mixture of publicly operated and privately owned TV and radio stations; national and regional public broadcasters compete with nearly 400 privately owned national and regional TV stations; more than 90% of households have cable or satellite TV; hundreds of radio stations including multiple national radio networks, regional radio networks, and a large number of local radio stations (2008)

Transportation

PolandGermany
Railwaystotal: 19,231 km
broad gauge: 395 km 1.524-m gauge
standard gauge: 18,836 km 1.435-m gauge (11,865 km electrified) (2015)
total: 43,468.3 km
standard gauge: 43,209.3 km 1.435-m gauge (19,973 km electrified)
narrow gauge: 220 km 1.000-m gauge (79 km electrified); 15 km 0.900-m gauge; 24 km 0.750-m gauge (2014)
Roadwaystotal: 417,026 km
paved: 287,650 km (includes 1,492 km of expressways)
unpaved: 129,376 km (2014)
total: 645,000 km
paved: 645,000 km (includes 12,800 km of expressways)
note: includes local roads (2010)
Waterways3,997 km (navigable rivers and canals) (2009)
7,467 km (Rhine River carries most goods; Main-Danube Canal links North Sea and Black Sea) (2012)
Pipelinesgas 14,198 km; oil 1,374 km; refined products 777 km (2013)
condensate 37 km; gas 26,985 km; oil 2,826 km; refined products 4,479 km; water 8 km (2013)
Ports and terminalsmajor seaport(s): Gdansk, Gdynia, Swinoujscie
river port(s): Szczecin (River Oder)
LNG terminal(s) (import): Swinoujscie
major seaport(s): Baltic Sea - Rostock; North Sea - Wilhelmshaven
river port(s): Bremen (Weser); Bremerhaven (Geeste); Duisburg, Karlsruhe, Neuss-Dusseldorf (Rhine); Brunsbuttel, Hamburg (Elbe); Lubeck (Wakenitz)
oil terminal(s): Brunsbuttel Canal terminals
container port(s): Bremen/Bremerhaven (5,480,000), Hamburg (8,821,000) (2015)
LNG terminal(s) (import): Hamburg
Merchant marinetotal: 9
by type: cargo 7, chemical tanker 1, passenger/cargo 1
registered in other countries: 106 (Antigua and Barbuda 2, Bahamas 34, Cyprus 24, Liberia 13, Malta 21, Saint Vincent and the Grenadines 3, Vanuatu 9) (2010)
total: 427
by type: barge carrier 2, bulk carrier 6, cargo 51, carrier 1, chemical tanker 15, container 298, liquefied gas 6, passenger 4, passenger/cargo 24, petroleum tanker 10, refrigerated cargo 3, roll on/roll off 6, vehicle carrier 1
foreign-owned: 6 (Finland 3, Netherlands 1, Switzerland 2)
registered in other countries: 3,420 (Antigua and Barbuda 1094, Australia 2, Bahamas 30, Bermuda 14, Brazil 6, Bulgaria 12, Burma 1, Cayman Islands 3, Cook Islands 1, Curacao 25, Cyprus 192, Denmark 9, Dominica 5, Estonia 1, France 1, Gibraltar 123, Hong Kong 10, Isle of Man 56, Jamaica 10, Liberia 1185, Luxembourg 9, Malta 135, Marshall Islands 248, Morocco 1, Netherlands 86, NZ 2, Panama 24, Papua New Guinea 1, Philippines 2, Portugal 14, Saint Vincent and the Grenadines 3, Singapore 32, Slovakia 3, Spain 4, Sri Lanka 8, Sweden 3, UK 59, US 5, Venezuela 1) (2010)
Airports126 (2013)
539 (2013)
Airports - with paved runwaystotal: 87
over 3,047 m: 5
2,438 to 3,047 m: 30
1,524 to 2,437 m: 36
914 to 1,523 m: 10
under 914 m: 6 (2013)
total: 318
over 3,047 m: 14
2,438 to 3,047 m: 49
1,524 to 2,437 m: 60
914 to 1,523 m: 70
under 914 m: 125 (2013)
Airports - with unpaved runwaystotal: 39
1,524 to 2,437 m: 1
914 to 1,523 m: 17
under 914 m: 21 (2013)
total: 221
1,524 to 2,437 m: 1
914 to 1,523 m: 35
under 914 m: 185 (2013)
Heliports6 (2013)
23 (2013)

Military

PolandGermany
Military branchesPolish Armed Forces: Land Forces, Navy, Air Force, Special Forces, Territorial Defense Force (2017)
note: Territorial Defense Force only began recruitment in winter 2016
Federal Armed Forces (Bundeswehr): Army (Heer), Navy (Deutsche Marine, includes naval air arm), Air Force (Luftwaffe), Joint Support Service (Streitkraeftebasis, SKB), Central Medical Service (Zentraler Sanitaetsdienst, ZSanDstBw), Cyber and Information Space Command (Kommando Cyber- und Informationsraum, Kdo CIR) (2017)
Military service age and obligation18-28 years of age for male and female voluntary military service; conscription phased out in 2009-12; service obligation shortened from 12 to 9 months in 2005; women only allowed to serve as officers and noncommissioned officers (2013)
17-23 years of age for male and female voluntary military service; conscription ended 1 July 2011; service obligation 8-23 months or 12 years; women have been eligible for voluntary service in all military branches and positions since 2001 (2013)
Military expenditures - percent of GDP2% of GDP (2016 est.)
2.23% of GDP (2015)
1.85% of GDP (2014)
1.72% of GDP (2013)
1.74% of GDP (2012)
1.19% of GDP (2016 est.)
1.19% of GDP (2015)
1.19% of GDP (2014)
1.23% of GDP (2013)
1.31% of GDP (2012)

Transnational Issues

PolandGermany
Disputes - internationalas a member state that forms part of the EU's external border, Poland has implemented the strict Schengen border rules to restrict illegal immigration and trade along its eastern borders with Belarus and Ukraine
none
Illicit drugsdespite diligent counternarcotics measures and international information sharing on cross-border crimes, a major illicit producer of synthetic drugs for the international market; minor transshipment point for Southwest Asian heroin and Latin American cocaine to Western Europe
source of precursor chemicals for South American cocaine processors; transshipment point for and consumer of Southwest Asian heroin, Latin American cocaine, and European-produced synthetic drugs; major financial center
Refugees and internally displaced personsrefugees (country of origin): 71,302 applicants for forms of legal stay other than asylum (Ukraine) (2015); 9,864 (Russia) (2016)
stateless persons: 10,825 (2016)
refugees (country of origin): 375,122 (Syria); 86,045 (Iraq); 46,292 (Afghanistan); 30,020 (Eritrea); 22,910 (Iran); 19,136 (Turkey); 9,189 (Serbia and Kosovo); 7,879 (Somalia); 5,255 (Russia); 5,169 (Pakistan) (2016)
stateless persons: 12,017 (2016)

Source: CIA Factbook