Poland sends updated national recovery plan to Brussels
Poland has submitted its draft of the National Recovery Plan to the European Commission, the chief of staff at the Prime Minister's Office said on Monday.
"On Friday, the Council of Ministers adopted the draft, which was sent in a working format (on Friday - PAP), and today we've completed the process of filing the National Recovery Plan with the European Commission," Piotr Mueller said.
Waldemar Buda, a deputy minister for funds and regional policy, said last-minute consultations with the Polish party the Left, social organisations and the European Commission had been going on well into Sunday.
"It is not justified to postpone the ratification of the (EU's - PAP) Recovery Fund planned for Tuesday in the Sejm (lower house of parliament - PAP)," Buda said.
All EU countries have to submit a plan if they want to gain access to the EU's multi-billion euro post-pandemic aid package.
Under the plan, Poland could receive some EUR 58.1 billion in grants and loans, including over EUR 34 billion this year.
But before that it needs to be ratified by a parliamentary vote. Law and Justice, the dominant party in Poland’s United Right coalition, has struggled to win support for the plan from Solidary Poland, one of its junior allies.
The party claims the plan threatens Polish sovereignty and so will vote against it, but Law and Justice last week secured the vital backing of the Left, which should ease the ratification process.
But the main opposition group, the Civic Coalition (KO), has demanded the vote be postponed after it accused the Left of betraying the opposition by entering into individual talks with Law and Justice (PiS).
KO has also warned PiS may use the funds to promote its agenda before the parliamentary elections, which are scheduled for 2023 but may take place earlier due to the tensions in the ruling coalition, as well as showing preference for PiS-dominated local governments.
The Sejm on May 4 is set to discuss a government draft law on ratifying an increase in the EU's own funds related to the EU multi-billion euro pandemic recovery fund.
Meanwhile, an MP from Solidary Poland, a junior member of the governing United Right coalition, said on Friday that his party would vote against the ratification of the National Recovery Plan, arguing that its launching may threaten Poland's sovereignty and harm the country's economy in the future.