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I UNDERSTAND
English Section

Polish president, gov't to discuss COVID-19 response at special meeting

02.09.2020 08:00
President Andrzej Duda has convened a special meeting with members of Poland’s government to discuss further efforts to tackle the country's coronavirus crisis, an aide has announced.
The Presidential Palace in Warsaw.
The Presidential Palace in Warsaw.Photo: Grzegorz Jakubowski/KPRP

The meeting, known as a Cabinet Council, is scheduled to be held at the presidential palace in Warsaw on Friday at 11 a.m., Krzysztof Szczerski, chief of staff to the Polish president, told reporters.

He added that Duda wanted government ministers to brief him on the state of play and planned new measures to fight COVID-19 as autumn approaches.

“We have a new health minister, and we have also entered a new school year, and at the same time the fall is coming, raising concerns over a possible double impact of the flu season and the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic," Szczerski said.

He added that topics "worth addressing at this point" also included the shape of the economy after the first two quarters of the year, “including the very difficult second quarter, with a significant decline in GDP."

The planned Cabinet Council meeting comes after Poland last month reimposed stricter COVID-19 measures in some of its worst affected areas amid a spike in infections.

On August 21, Poland's public health authorities reported a record daily rise of 903 new coronavirus infections nationwide, the most since the pandemic hit the country in early March.

By Tuesday, Poland had reported a total of 67,922 coronavirus infections and 2,058 deaths from the COVID-19 respiratory disease.

National health service chief Adam Niedzielski in the middle of last week took over as Poland’s new health minister, following a swearing-in ceremony at the presidential palace.

Poland has reopened most of its schools to students after the summer break ended and a new school year began on Tuesday.

Education Minister Dariusz Piontkowski has said that, after a prolonged period of distance learning amid the coronavirus pandemic, traditional in-person classes will be reinstated in most schools nationwide during the new school year.

The Polish economy contracted 8.2 percent in the second quarter of this year, the country’s Central Statistical Office (GUS) estimated on Monday, amid the coronavirus pandemic.

(gs)

Source: IAR