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I UNDERSTAND
English Section

Polish PM promises ‘constructive role’ as EU budget discussed

07.02.2020 11:00
Poland will play a constructive role in working out a compromise on the European Union’s new multiannual budget, the country’s prime minister has said.
Audio
  • Polish PM promises ‘constructive role’ as EU budget discussed: Listen to a report by Michał Owczarek
Polish Prime Minister Mateusz Morawiecki and European Council President Charles Michel meet in Brussels, Belgium, on Thursday.
Polish Prime Minister Mateusz Morawiecki and European Council President Charles Michel meet in Brussels, Belgium, on Thursday.Photo: EPA/STEPHANIE LECOCQ

Speaking after talks with top EU officials in Brussels, Mateusz Morawiecki said that the key to a prompt successful conclusion to negotiations on the bloc’s next budget for 2021-2027 was "finding a good consensus” on the EU’s “new own resources."

"Poland is open and flexible in this area,” Morawiecki declared late on Thursday after talks with European Commission chief Ursula von der Leyen and European Council President Charles Michel.

“We will definitely play a constructive role in working out the final consensus on the European budget," he added.

He told a press conference that Poland was ready to compromise on the budget, but was emphasising its own national priorities, Poland’s PAP news agency reported.

Morawiecki told newsmen that he had "a good discussion" with both EU officials.

"I am convinced that it was a step in the right direction, although the negotiations will certainly be very, very difficult," he said, as quoted by the Polish state news agency.

His visit to Brussels came at a time when EU heads of state and government are preparing for a special summit this month during which they will attempt to agree on key points of a proposed budget for the bloc, according to the Polish prime minister’s office.

Polish Prime Minister Mateusz Morawiecki and European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen meet in Brussels, Belgium, on Thursday. Photo: EPA/STEPHANIE LECOCQ Polish Prime Minister Mateusz Morawiecki and European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen meet in Brussels, Belgium, on Thursday. Photo: EPA/STEPHANIE LECOCQ

Morawiecki was earlier this month quoted as saying that the European Commission's proposal on the bloc’s new budget for 2021-2027 was “insufficient” and “not ambitious enough.”

At the end of last week, the Polish prime minister traveled to Portugal to attend a meeting of leaders from EU countries that form an informal group known as the “Friends of Cohesion.”

He later told reporters that the get-together produced a declaration in which the 17-member group said a “firm no" to any restrictions to the EU’s cohesion policy and agricultural policies.

Morawiecki at the end of last month discussed the EU’s new budget with German Chancellor Angela Merkel during a visit to Berlin.

He told reporters after those talks that he and Merkel both expected some tough negotiations on the bloc's common budget at a summit of leaders planned for February 20.

(gs)

Source: PAP

Click on the audio icon above to listen to a report by Michał Owczarek.