Poland applies for suspension of EU court fines
Poland has submitted a motion for the suspension of fines imposed by the European Court of Justice (CJEU) over a contested Disciplinary Chamber of the country's Supreme Court, Warsaw's minister for European affairs announced on Friday.
Szymon Szynkowski vel Sek also said he hoped the motion would be considered without undue delay.
In 2021, the CJEU ruled that Poland must immediately suspend the work of the Disciplinary Chamber, specifically in terms of stripping judges of their immunity. The EU has accused the chamber of undermining judicial independence and the rule of law in Poland. Warsaw's failure to comply with the ruling prompted the CJEU to impose a fine of EUR 1 million a day, to be paid to the European Commission (EC).
Szynkowski vel Sek told private broadcaster Polsat News that the legal situation had changed since an amendment to the Supreme Court law came into force. He added that the request to suspend the fine, "was submitted yesterday by us with rich argumentation indicating the new legal circumstances.
"We will expect a response from the EC," he said.
Asked from when the fine is to be suspended, Szynkowski vel Sek replied that Warsaw hoped it would take effect from the date the legal amendment came into force. He also said he would travel to Brussels next week and that one of the key subjects of his talks there would be the EU's payment of post-pandemic recovery funding for the National Recovery Plan (KPO).
The EC approved Poland's KPO in early June, opening the way for Warsaw to get EUR 23.9 billion in grants and EUR 11.5 billion in cheap loans. But the Commission has long been at loggerheads with Poland's ruling Law and Justice party and froze Warsaw's access to the funds until it meets several rule-of-law milestones, including the suspension of the Disciplinary Chamber.