Almost a third of Poles believe the European Commission should not grant the money from the EU Recovery Fund for Poland until the government fulfils the conditions regarding judicial independence, a survey has shown.
Just over two thirds of participants of the United Surveys poll for Dziennik Gazeta Prawna daily and RMF FM radio said the money from the Recovery Fund should be issued regardless of the Commission’s assessment of the rule of law in Poland. 28% of respondents said the payments should not be made.
“Over two-thirds of Poles see that the recovery money is needed to finance essential projects,” says Norbert Maliszewski from the government’s Strategic Analysis Centre, quoted by DGP. Some people believe the Commission’s expectations towards judiciary reforms are “kind of a political pressure that is inadequate to the current difficult time,” he adds.
The opposition believes otherwise. “The government made Poles tired with the topic of the rule of law. People have financial problems; therefore, they believe that Poland needs the EU money,” said Civic Platform MP Izabela Leszczyna.
The difference in opinions reflects the political divisions. Among the ruling Law and Justice party electorate, as much as 82% think the payments should be launched unconditionally. Seventy-one per cent of voters of the Left, Polish People’s Party and Kukiz ‘15 party are of the opposite opinion.
After withholding the acceptance of the Polish recovery plan due to the rule of law concerns, the Commission finally approved it earlier this month, paving the way to launch the recovery payments.
European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen said Poland would not receive the first tranche until it fulfils 37 conditions, the so-called milestones, most of which refer to judicial independence.
One milestone is soon to be fulfilled as, next month, a bill comes into force dismantling the Disciplinary Chamber of the Supreme Court that the EU Court of Justice ruled to be illegal. So far, the EU has not commented on the new law, DGP reports.