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  • 20 March 2017

    “Polish government has demonstrated that it can play hard and confrontational, but on many other occasions it has shown willingness to strike a compromise,” stressed MFA’s deputy chief.

    In an interview for the weekly Wprost, Deputy Minister Szymański talked about the future of the concept of a multi-speed Europe, EU funds and the case of Gazprom.

     

     

    MFA’s deputy chief stressed that a failure to draw conclusions by European capitals from the last European Union summit in Brussels will be “a setback for the EU as a whole.” “But there are many signs indicating that conclusions will be drawn. The President [of the European Council’s] mandate will be exercised with greater caution and heads of government will decide about stricter rules for electing candidates to that position,” said the deputy minister.

     

    Deputy Minister Szymański expressed his opinion about possible pressure to cut EU funding. “This argumentation smacks of shallow populism, suggesting that structural funds are a form of reward for good behaviour. Structural funds are money earmarked for implementing European objectives in Poland, once painstakingly negotiated with the EU, that benefit us and Europe as a whole. This way of presenting the issue will only make reaching an agreement more difficult,” said the MFA’s deputy chief. In the minister’s opinion “every type of division into small, perhaps cosy clubs weakens Europe.” “For this reason Poland is against a multi-speed Europe,” he stressed. “There is still no definition of flexibility or two speeds,” he noted. In Szymański’s opinion, a noticeable integration leap would necessitate a change of the treaties, something that the EU countries are not ready for.

     

    The deputy minister also addressed the case of Gazprom: “In the EU we have already agreed that we will build an adequate legal framework and physical infrastructure that will make the gas market competitive. We are not only concerned with Russia, but in general about the shape of this industry’s business model. A system must be built that will make Europe much more resistant to shocks and as a result will strengthen its negotiating position vis-à-vis external players on which we are dependent,” said Deputy Minister Szymański.

     

    Source: Wprost

     

     

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