Poland to receive long-awaited EU funding in Sept says gov't spokesman
The payout of EU pandemic recovery funds for Poland, which have been withheld by the European Commission (EC) due to Poland's non-compliance with EU rule-of-law standards, will take place around September, according to the government spokesman.
The EC has demanded that Poland shut down a contested disciplinary panel for judges at the Supreme Court, reform its judicial disciplinary system and reinstate judges suspended by the panel.
"When it comes to the reimbursement of funds... the actual payout may take place around September, because after accepting the National Recovery Plan (KPO), it is only a formality," Piotr Mueller said after a government meeting on Tuesday.
The KPO outlines how Poland intends to spend the billions of euros in post-pandemic funding it should get from Brussels, if the plan is approved by the EC.
Poland has not yet passed a law that would close down or replace the Disciplinary Chamber of the Supreme Court with a different body, but on Monday the Chamber did reinstate one of the judges it had previously suspended.
Mueller was unable to specify when the EC would actually approve Poland's recovery plan.
"It is a question to the European Commission about when it will complete the formal process, but it will happen soon," he said.
Despite not having received the green light from the EC the government "is already launching all the programmes included in the KPO," Mueller said.
Last year, the Court of Justice of the European Union ordered the suspension of the Disciplinary Chamber but Poland has not complied with the ruling.
In the KPO, Poland has asked the EU for EUR 35.4 billion, including EUR 23.9 billion in grants and EUR 11.5 billion in loans.