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I UNDERSTAND
English Section

Poland 'cannot accept' plans to link rule of law and EU funds: PM

13.11.2020 09:30
Poland "cannot accept" plans to link the rule of law and access to EU funds, the country’s prime minister has said.
Polish Prime Minister Mateusz Morawiecki.
Polish Prime Minister Mateusz Morawiecki.Photo: PAP/Łukasz Gągulski

Mateusz Morawiecki said in a social media post on Thursday that he had sent a letter to European Union leaders to outline Poland’s “perspective on conditionality mechanisms related to the EU budget.”

Morawiecki said Poland could not accept a proposed link between access to EU funds and respect for the rule of law because the mechanism was based on “arbitrary and politically motivated criteria.”

“In recent days I have sent a letter to EU leaders showing our perspective on conditionality mechanisms related to the EU budget,” Mateusz Morawiecki said on Facebook.

He added that “discretionary mechanisms, based on arbitrary and politically motivated criteria, cannot be accepted because they do not take into account the essential, substantive aspects of European law.”

He argued that “their adoption could lead to sanctioning the application of double standards and different treatment of individual EU member states.”

Morawiecki also said that “the proposed solutions are against the conclusions of the July 2020 European Council and raise serious legal doubts in light of the wording of the Treaties.”

Such an approach could pose “serious threats to the rule of law in the EU,” he insisted.

“That is why Poland cannot accept this version of the mechanism as it would lead to the primacy of political and arbitrary criteria over a substantive assessment,” Morawiecki wrote.

His letter was sent to European Commission chief Ursula von der Leyen, European Council head Charles Michel, and German Chancellor Angela Merkel, according to Polish state news agency PAP.

Morawiecki's letter comes after negotiators from the European Parliament and the German presidency of the EU last week reached an agreement on the rule of law mechanism for the bloc’s 2021-2027 budget, a push that has met with criticism from Poland and Hungary, the PAP news agency reported.

Under the proposal, which still needs to be approved by European lawmakers and the EU Council, a decision to freeze funds for a member state found in breach of the EU's rule of law principles could be passed by a qualified majority, the news agency said.

(gs/pk)

Source: PAP