The Euro for Poland

The Euro for Poland

Poland is the biggest economy of new Europe with 625 Billion $ GDP in 2021. Poland has been an important regional power inside NATO since 1999 and EU 2004. Member of OECD, OSCE, WTO, Schengen, has recognized Kosovo and is key supporter of European Ukraine by opening the Polish Labor Market more or less fully to all Ukrainians and ca 1,5 Million Ukrainians work in Poland today. Sadly Polish per capita GDP at 17.400 $ is lower than Lithuania, Slovakia, Slovenia, Estonia and Latvia who have all joined the Eurozone. Only the Czech Republic is richer and has made the same mistake to delay entry in the Eurozone. But the Czech Republic was always the richest, most industrialized economy for centuries and Poland as a bigger market close to Germany should be much richer than the 5 new Eurozone members all small, peripheral, historically much poorer and much less integrated in the German industrial value chain. The decision to stay out of the Eurozone taken during the peak Greek debt crisis in 2012 leads to Poland GDP ca 200 billion lower if Lithuania or Slovakian success can be assumed. Compounded over a decade, this decision has lost Poland half a trillion $ GDP over the last decade, a decision taken by Donald Tusk.

The return of Donald Tusk

The Anti Europeans of PIS who took power after Tusk leaving onwards and upwards to Chair the EU Council and who run Poland today have just kept delaying the entry to the Eurozone and focused on their confused nationalistic agenda messing up the legal system and aligning themselves with pro Russian assets as the Hungarian Prime Minister. PIS managed to isolate the strongest new EU Member and the biggest economy inside NATO, betting on a Trump victory and now on the bad side of Biden and even soft Ursula von der Leyen felt empowered to threaten to withhold EU Funding if PIS continues its course. 36 Billion Euro makes even Kaczynski blink. The 90 Billion Euro the EU has transferred since 2004 to Poland on a net basis had less impact but the new 36 seem to carry some weight. And EPP President Donald Tusk has decided to return to Poland and the elections are scheduled for 2023 and snap elections earlier are possible. So will Donald Tusk lead Poland into the Eurozone or will PIS deprive him of the winning election topic and join the Eurozone prior to that. Membership is a legal obligation anyhow so what is to win by delaying it?  The support for the Eurozone is only at 33% in Poland so will Donald Tusk doge this issue? Is he the great European then? If we just transferred 36 Billion Euros to Poland and Poland rejects the Eurozone how much solidarity do we have in EU? And yes we focus with much moral vigor on the Rule of Law and Social issues of Polish family law, sure they matter but the Euro certainly matters significantly more than how certainly issues of family law are regulated in Poland or how judges are appointed. In Austria and Germany we just recently made progress on family law after much complication and resistance and our judges are as well politically appointed and so they are in the USA and in all democracies. So let us focus on the fundamentals and the Euro is the fundament of the European economy and let us make Poland a offer to join the Eurozone and not further antagonize Poland so that PIS can win and clear anti European campaign and even our great European Donald Tusk can not win and lead Poland into the Euro if we continue as we do right now. And those who turn a blind eye on Putin and Lukashenka and focus on Poland’s regrettable lack of compliance with modernity have simply lost their sense of proportion and perspective. The world has changed since 2014 Russian aggression and the destruction of the Post World War 2 European order by Russia’s annexation of Crimea and waging a war of aggression against Ukraine. Our common defense and the integration of Ukraine in NATO and EU – yes and in the Eurosystem is now the overriding strategic priority and not social issues in Poland. And those making these issues so big are the real opponents of enlargement as they work hard to spoil the image of the new EU Member states as corrupt and nationalistic, backward and dark in order to make the 3rd wave of enlargement impossible. True it is not so easy with the Balkan 6 and the EU Accession Trio to get the 9 missing into NATO, EU and the Euro but it would be much easier if the Western NGO elite would talk more positive about the success of Romania, Poland, Bulgaria and all and none of them was ever so rich and so close to Western European prosperity since -ever with the Czech Republic the only historic exception. Enlargement works and will again and so does the Euro.

Poland, join the Eurozone, do it for European Ukraine

Poland matters very much for Ukraine, in history and as role model and partner post Euromaidan and when proposing the Euro as currency for Ukraine based on the Montenegro and Kosovo model often the answer is, look at Poland, progress is possible without the Euro and there must be something wrong with the Euro because Poland does not want to join. So our own international division lines and conflicts make Putin smile. Imagine how his smile would petrify and his mood sour if Ukraine seriously considered adopting the Euro and with such an irreversible step being lost for Russia forever. Not good for Russia, but what is good for Russia is if the EU is divided and Poland talks rejects the Euro, Ukraine keeps the Hryvna and we are stuck, lose potential GDP, miss the convergence opportunity and stay divided, easy to be tackled individually the Russian experts – country by country bought and contained. Parts of Poland were part of the Russian Empire until 1918 and Stalin wanted to retake it in 1919 and did so in 1944 and kept it for 50 years until the break up for the Soviet Alliance and the Soviet Union and we are lucky in the 1990s and now a resurgent Russian does not want Poland to join the currency system of the West. The last step to complete Poland’s western integration is missing and so significant for every aspect of daily and economic life and making the Euro stronger by adding such a significant economy to the Eurozone output and completing Europe step by step including former Russian territory. Yes and with Poland in Eurozone the Euro will be already much more significant factor in Ukraine due to high trade, FDI and remittance from Poland into Ukraine and with Poland joining the Eurozone, Ukraine adopting the Euro is much more credible scenario than today with the Dollar dominating Ukraine and the Euro competing with the Polish Zloty as secondary currency only in Western Ukraine. Once Poland, Romania and Hungary have joined Slovakia in the Eurozone and Moldova has adopted the Euro based on the Montenegro model the Euro for Ukraine will be a different debate. We can unite Europe by the Euro, help Ukraine integrate in Transatlantic Free World and contain the Russian aggression and win the 2nd Cold War by Poland adopting the Euro, by the power of Poland and the drive of Poland to join the West that won the First Cold War by Poland leading the way for freedom, so we can win the 2nd Cold War by Poland joining the Eurozone. 

Published by GunterFehlinger

Austrian Economist and pro NATO and pro European activist Podcast PaxEuropeana

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