Economy of Pollona
|April 1 - 31 March|
GDP per capita
GDP by sector
Population below poverty line
|13% (2014 est.)|
|$ 2,350 monthly|
Main export partners
Rochehaut 9.6%, |
Main import partners
Berry 9%, |
Gross external debt
|61.5% of GDP (2015|
|-$3 Billion (2015)|
|Revenues||$480 Billion (2015)|
|Expenses||$477 Billion (2015|
The economy of Pollona is the 7th largest national economy in Maredoratica and the 4th largest in Alisna (in PPP), with a GDP of $2.435 trillion ($2,435 billion). Pollona is one of several post-industrial economies in Maredoratica heavily interconnected in regional finance and trade. Its GDPPC of $34,000 is the 4th highest in Alisna and the 8th highest in Maredoratica. Approximately 8% of Maredoratica's total trade, around $1.5 trillion in goods and services, is exchanged within the country's borders.
The service sector is the largest portion of the Pollonan economy accounting for 65.5% of GDP. Financial Services, expanding 20% per decade since 1975, play an important role in the Pollonan economy, having access to most Maredoratican markets. Consumer Goods manufacturers are an increasing component of national exports due to greater foreign investment. Refining of industrial metals like steel and cooper remain important domestic heavy industries, as well as foodstuffs. Recent discoveries of offshore natural gas have boosted productivity in the refining industries; potential reserves were valued at $150 billion in 2013. Pollona is heavily dependent on foreign trade, with its trade volume equaling 65% of GDP.
Pollona's socio-economic policy is a hybrid of radical free market economics and common workplace security. Pollona has a prosperous open economy, both internally and internationally. It is ranked in the top 5 nations in Maredoratica for economic freedom, regulatory environment, and ease of doing business. Since the 1980s, Pollona has kept a strict policy of free trade, with gradual retrenchment from the private sector. Rather than direct intervention, the government provides social insurance schemes and supports co-determination policies between employers and labor organizations. The Pollonan government actively encourages cooperatives and other forms of industrial democracy within the confines of a market economy.
Approximately 75% of all Pollonan businesses belong to the Podnik, a term for small and medium-sized enterprises, family-owned companies, start ups, and local cooperatives. The Podnik culture is an important factor in Pollona's large start-up culture. Larger Pollonan companies have made it on the list of Maredoratica's 500 most profitable firms. Pollona is a member of the Brezier Group, the Group of Twenty, and the Maredoratic League.
Following the end of the Wars of Religion in 1601, the Moravian Empire experienced a century of steady economic growth. The massive depopulation of the countryside meant an extension of landownership to new tenants, increased wages for rural labourers, and the adoption of new technologies. Imperial agriculture was one of the most efficient in Alisna in the 17th and 18th centuries; though accounting for less than 4% of the continent's land area, Moravia produced 10% of Alisna's agricultural output. These large surpluses were key to feeding the country's growing cities, as by 1750 Moravia's population exceeded pre-Reformation levels.
Spurred by innovations in shipbuilding, trade mechanics, and capital financing, the Empire became a major trading power in the late 1600s. Moravia maintained this advantage through a system of free ports, allowing commerce to flow freely between Eastern Alisna and Wilassia. The Sazavou Entrepot for example, hosted over 200,000 metric tonnes of shipping annually between 1650 and 1680, one of the continent's busiest ports. The tax revenue from the Moravian coastal cities exceeded the income from all other cities in 1670. Wealthier merchants, spurred by gains in trade, financed the expansion of the merchant marine. In 1682 at the request of city merchants, Emperor Peter II granted a charter for the Brno Stock Exchange, establishing the city's future in finance.
In the mid 1700s, restricted by expensive wars, failed colonization attempts, and inefficient imperial monopolies, countries such as Questers and Styria soon eclipsed Moravia. The economic havoc wrought by the Fisheries Bubble of 1729, and the loss of the Vladzemi to Morieux in 1747 exacerbated Moravia's problems.
Industrialization only really began in Moravia in the early 1830s, brought by the introduction of the railroad. Previously, critical raw materials in the north and Highlands, like coal, were highly expensive to transport. Waterpower, though available, was not suited to most of Pollona's slower moving rivers. Now, with the railroad, industrialists in southern an interior cities could cheaply access raw materials. In addition Moravia's first commercial railway in 1831, linking the outer suburbs of Kralové, proved wildly popular. In less than 25 years more than 8,000 km of railroad track were constructed across the country. Industrial production doubled every 20 years in Pollona between 1830 and 1900, outstripping its neighbor Questers. On the eve of the Great Maredoratic War, 58% of GNP was devoted to industry.
The Pollonan Revolution disrupted economic development in Pollona. The new republic improved working conditions, instituted land reform, and simplified commercial law. Pollona introduce social insurance programs including universal healthcare, compulsory education, disability insurance, and retirement pensions. The most successful, the government's education policies, provided more people in the professional services and white collar industries; the degree holding population increased from 5% in 1910 to 25% in 1940. The government's radical policies on trade unions actually inspired industrial peace and sizable cooperative industries. In 1930, 20% of Pollonan businesses were worker's cooperatives and over 25% of workers were unionized, this grew to 45% by 1960.
Governments in the post-Red Spring period were far more interventionist, engaging in massive nationalizations of critical industries like steel, petrochemicals, and shipbuilding. Larger scale state planning and tariff restrictions were instituted to protect heavy Pollonan industries, which were already declining by the late 1930s early 40s. These government controls continued, and indeed escalated, for the next three decades. The period from 1960 to 1980s featured long periods of labor unrest, stagflation, debt crises, and industrial decline. At its low point in 1972, Pollona was in the bottom 10 of Alisnan countries for GDPPC and productivity, scoring poorly in the ease of doing business, tax complexity, and contract law.
Government economic policy gradually shifted to a more neoliberal stance in 1980. Pollona founded the Maredoratic Trade Organization in the mid 1970s, an organization which helped lower international trade barriers across the region. Other domestic policies accelerated in the 1980s: state enterprises were sold, quotas and tariffs were abolished, and tax collection was simplified. The government promoted outside investments in technological firms, biotechnical companies, and emerging startups. It further supported mechanization and automation in its industrial and agricultural sectors to stay globally competitive, and encouraged the revitalization of Pollonan trade.
These policies dramatic re-balanced the economy in favor of post-industrial sectors. For example, Pollona's financial services sector exploded: the banking industry doubled its activity every decade between 1980 and 2010. Trade as a % of GDP increased from 33% in 1975 to 61% in 2005. Much wider effects were felt from this "long boom" period. The country was one of the region's fastest growing economies in the 1980s and 1990s, averaging 3-4% growth per year. Unemployment fell from its record high of 12% in the 1973 to 5% in 1995; inflation declined from 18% per year in 1977 to 4% in 1992. Growth waned in the early 2000s as Pollona caught up to Maredoratica's other advanced economies. Real growth since has largely mirrored the Brezier Group average, though slumped in a recession in 2012, and after the Questarian Debt Crisis of 2014.
Labor policy in Pollona is directed by state governments and the Ministry of Commerce. The National Labour Relations Council (Národní Pracovní Vztahy Rada or NPVR), composed of employee and employer representatives, is the primary body governing labor practices and overseeing arbitration. Policies set by the NPVR are meant to foster conciliation and set minimum standards for workplace practices.
Co-determination (Podílnictví or coparternship), involving management and workers in decision-making, is a pinnacle of Pollonan labor policy and practiced by all public companies and most commercial organizations. Workers councils (Pracovníci Výbor), consisting of employee-chosen representatives, feature directly in Pollonan companies. Company boards meet with workers council monthly; on most Boards of Directors a 1/5th to 1/3rd of the seats are elected by employees. In a cooperative or "co-op", workers exclusively manage the day-to-day operations of their company. Co-ops make up 18% of all Pollonan businesses.
Laws on workplace contracts and unionization are straightforward and mask little complexity. All employment must be preceded via contract (even part-time work), for companies with more than 50 employees. Employment contracts are typically renewed every 3 to 5 years and least one month's notice must be given for an early termination (except for criminal behavior). At least 10% of a company's workforce must petition for the creation or representation by a union before it is recognized by the NPVR. Public sector unions, the semi-closed shop, and monopoly representation are prohibited. Arbitration is encouraged at a company level, but may be appealed to the NPVR. Between 30 to 35% of the labor force is unionized. The largest trade union federations are the Council of Christian Unions (Rada Křesťanských Svazy/RKS), the Federation of Pollonan Craftsman (Federace Řemeslníci Ploňá/FRP), and the Pollonan Labor Congress (Ploňá Kongres Práce/PKP).
These institutions and practices have resulted in workplace egalitarianism, fresh innovation, and responsible management. General management culture actively encourages subordinate input in decision making, though not final say; in turn, individual initiative is rewarded.
In determining wages and compensation, companies and workers negotiate based on the "Indexed Scale" Rule (Indexovány Měřítko or simply Měřít) established by the NPVR. Under this scheme, the NPVR sets the minimum standard for company benefits like maternity leave which an employer must offer. However, an employee may forgo this benefit for higher wages. The policy works as follows:
- First, a worker's base pay is negotiated.
- Next, the company provides a list of all the benefits it required to offer (per NPVR guidelines). This includes pension contributions, health insurance, extra holidays or sick days, paid maternity leave, and other fringe perks (cars, credit card, etc.)
- Lastly, for every benefit an employee foregoes, he is remunerated based off of the net present value of the foregone benefit.
At present, the industry standard benefits are: 15 weeks of paid maternity leave for men and women; 10 sick days, 15 paid holidays (excluding national holidays); matching health insurance contributions; matching pension contributions; and subsidized accident benefit. There is no set standard given for overtime pay given the wide disparities in industry work hours, however most companies offer 50% wages for work done "beyond the mandated work schedule" or in "unsocial hours."
There is no national minimum wage in Pollona, though minimum wages may be set on a local or state level. The NPVR has varying "target wage floors" which mostly apply to unskilled or blue collar industries (sectors traditionally unionized). These polices are set assuming a traditional 40-hour work week. The typical Pollonan works 38.6 hours per week.