Eu-Poland: Association Council Brings Back Cimoszewicz

Europe-East, November 27, 2001 | Go to article overview

Eu-Poland: Association Council Brings Back Cimoszewicz


The EU-Poland Association Council, which met in Brussels on 20 November, was remarkable more for the news that Poland was revising its earlier tough stance on land acquisition and freedom of movement of workers (see separate story in this issue) than for its formal agenda. Nonetheless, the meeting was not without some historical interest, in part because it was chaired by Wlodzimierz Cimoszewicz, now the new Minister for Foreign Affairs of Poland, and formerly the Prime Minister.The Association Council noted that Poland continues to fulfil the Copenhagen political criteria. It noted the progress made by Poland in the reform of the judiciary, and underlined the importance of continuing the work already undertaken in this field. And it encouraged Poland to intensify efforts as regards the fight against corruption and to pursue the implementation of the Civil Service Law, in order to ensure the further development of an independent and professional civil service.With regard to the Copenhagen economic criteria, the Association Council noted that Poland is a functioning market economy. But while welcoming positive developments in Poland, such as the continuation of the privatisation process and of the restructuring of sensitive industrial sectors, as well as the strengthening of the legal framework for business, the Council noted the recent decline in economic growth and increase in unemployment. In this context, it welcomed the decision taken by the Polish government to place a realistic limit on the size of the budget deficit for 2002 and underlined the need for Poland to take appropriate measures so as to ensure financial stability.The ambitious legislative programme adopted by the new Polish government was acknowledged, as was substantial progress made in adopting the necessary legislation in a number of fields under the government that left office in October. It encouraged Poland to build upon these achievements in the transposition of the acquis and to focus on the strengthening of the administrative capacity in order to be able to fully implement it.The Association Council noted that the Europe Agreement is being implemented in a spirit of co-operation between the two parties and encouraged them to intensify their dialogue in order to find appropriate solutions to outstanding issues, in particular as regards barriers to bilateral trade. It took note of the latest information concerning the previously proposed surcharge on imports, and noted the agreement between the EU and Poland on reciprocal trade concessions in the field of agricultural products, which has been applied by autonomous measures as from 1 January 2001. …

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