Poland set to become even greater EU power, says report

86 per cent of Poles would vote to join the EU if they were asked again today. Paweł Supernak/PAP

Poland is Europe’s future, says the deputy head of the Polish Economic Institute.

Piotr Arak, in a letter to online magazine Politico, said that although Poland may be at loggerheads with the EU over certain issues, this is a temporary blip on the path towards stronger Polish-EU relations.

Poland’s recent conflict with the union is about a ‘younger, more dynamic’ country that is willing ‘to rock the boat’, he says.

Indeed, the majority of Poles, as Arak argues, are not against membership – 86 per cent would vote to join the EU if they were asked again today.

Instead, Poland had a future as a strong EU player. With GDP per capita likely to overtake Portugal in 2020, and Italy in the near future, Poland is set to become a major EU power.

It would also be able to pick up the mantle dropped by the UK after its likely exit from the Union in March 2019.

Likewise, with Albania and Macedonia set to enter the European Union soon, Poland would be able to take on the role of one of the more mature member states, helping the ‘infants’ deal with corruption and EU funding. 

Furthermore, Arak adds in the piece, the government’s new efforts towards social solidarity – i.e. investment in social welfare and social leveling – in the form of increased VAT and taxation of the wealthy, was just the next step towards becoming a functional EU member state.

Poland's economy grew by an annual 4.6 percent in 2017 - nearly twice as much as in 2016, when it had grown by 2.9 percent.

Unemployment rate stood at 4.3 percent at the end of 2017 - at the same time, an average European Union's jobless rate was at 7.3 percent.