The aim of the paper is to diagnose the influence of the new Common Agricultural Policy (CAP) for the 2007-2013 period on polish agri-food sector and development of the rural areas in Poland. The first part of the article presents the general macroeconomic background of the polish economy. In particular, there are determined the general indicators of development like a Gross Domestic Product (GDP), a budget deficit or a situation of the labour market. Further in the paper, the strengths and the weaknesses of the polish agricultural sector and rural areas are taken into account. The most important obstacles for development are a high unemployment in the rural areas, an underdeveloped technical infrastructure and a fragmented farming structure, while the main opportunities are a high tourism attractiveness of the rural and agricultural landscape, a relatively large land resources and rich biodiversity, a good condition of the environment enabling sustainable farming system, an advanced restructuring process of food processing industry and others. More detailed data are presented in the tables.The next part of the article concerns the shape of the CAP for the years 2007-2013. There are described the main elements of the new CAP (decoupling, further reduction of intervention prices on milk market, modulation, mechanism of financial discipline, cross-compliance rules, increase of both the scope and the level of support for the development of rural areas). In conclusion there is demonstrated that the new approach of the CAP to solving common problems of the agricultural sector is much more in line with the real needs of Poland and could influence positively on polish agricultural sector and polish rural areas.