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Poland’s April jobless rate seen at 11%

  Poland’s unemployment rate last month likely stood at 11%, down from 11.2% posted in March, Labor Minister Jolanta Fedak said on Friday.

The minister also said the jobless rate is likely to stabilize in coming months, though she could not rule out a worsening of the situation in the second half of the year. “I hope the unemployment rate will stabilize at the current level in coming months,” Fedak told a news conference.

The unemployment rate, which traditionally rises in winter when many seasonal jobs disappear, usually falls at the start of spring. Many analysts have predicted a gradual rise in Poland’s jobless rate due to the sharp economic slowdown.

Poland’s economic growth is expected to slow significantly to around 0.8% in 2009, according to the latest Reuters poll of analysts, as the euro zone, the country’s main trade partner, battles a deep recession.

The European Commission, the International Monetary Fund and some economists expect Poland’s economy to contract this year, though by less than most of its regional peers. (Reuters)