Pole Position on EU summit

Pole Position with Aleksandra Rybińska (Sieci) and Łukasz Warzecha (Do Rzeczy) looks at the fall-out from the EU summit and at how the Polish President fell victim to a Russian prank.

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The EU summit has ended with Poland gaining a EUR 160 bn settlement. It also believes it has managed to retain its veto over any rule of law compliance mechanism. It resembled both a marathon and a battle, the second longest EU summit on record. What was important for Poland was not just the money, but also retaining its sovereignty with regard to rule of law compliance.The financial settlement is only 3 percent less in terms of actual funding than had originally been proposed by the EC. The final settlement within the EU reduced the amount available in grants and increased funding available through loans. That was the price that had to be paid to get approval from the group of “frugal”, or as PM Morawiecki called them “miser”, countries.

President Duda got more than he bargained for when he was told by his aides that the UN’s Secretary General Antonio Guterres wanted to speak to him. It later turned out that the 15 minute conversation was a prank organized by Russian satirists who have on other occasions embarrassed French President Macron and British PM Boris Johnson. The President was very diplomatic when answering some very undiplomatic questions. He must have been surprised over the supposed UN Secretary General’s liking for a well-known Polish drink called “Zubrowka”. But the ‘fun’ ended with two Polish diplomats being fired for lack of due diligence.