Rostowski rejects American economist criticism of euro policy
PR dla Zagranicy
Finance minister Jacek Rostowski has rejected criticism by an award-winning American economist of the government’s intention to join the eurozone, saying that there are no immediate plans to adopt the single currency.
Of Paul Krugman’s article in the New York Times, headlined, ‘Poland is not yet lost’, Rostowski, who is also Polish deputy prime minister, said that the American economist misunderstood the government’s position and that it did not want to adopt the euro as soon as possible, in fact, the “opposite is the case”.
"We will have to convince Poles first,” Minister Rostowski said, noting that at present a majority are telling opinion polls that they are against the idea.
In the NYT article, Professor Krugman, who won the Nobel Memorial Prize in Economic Sciences in 2008, wrote that though Poland has been one of the rare economic success stories in recent years in Europe, “a lot of that relative success clearly had to do with the fact that Poland not only kept its own currency, but allowed the zloty to float”.
Krugman argues that Poland’s relatively high growth rate has been due to massive currency devaluation, and dropping the zloty and adopting the euro would deprive Warsaw of taking that option after it gives over much of its control of monetary policy to Brussels.
Of the Polish government’s desire to join the eurozone, Krugman writes:” It really does make you want to bang your head against a wall. Think of Spain, Ireland, now Cyprus. How much more evidence do we need that the euro is a trap, which can all too easily leave countries with no good options in the face of crisis?”
MInister Rostowski has said, however, that a date on joining the eurozone would not be taken until after the next general election in 2015.
Prime Minister Donald Tusk also said this week that he would consider a referendum on the issue. (pg)