Deputy Prime of Poland Addresses TCD’s Policy Institute

Posted on: 30 April 2013

The Deputy Prime Minister and Finance Minister of Poland Jan Vincent Rostowski argued that repairing the Eurozone was vital for all member states of the European Union when he addressed TCD’s Policy Institute recently.

In his lecture entitled ‘Roadmap for recovery in the post-crisis Europe: Cohesion or Division?’ Mr Rostowski warned that the answer to the question as to whether the Eurozone was destroying the European Union was “not yet”. Mr Rostowski said he was convinced that the measures put in place in response to the economic crisis would prevent the same kind of crisis occurring again.

Mr Rostowski argued that the Eurozone was fragmented. He identified key problems as the differential cost of credit between member countries, financial protectionism, differences between states on capital control regulation and the North – South divide.

According to Mr Rostowski, getting the European periphery out of recession should be the EU’s main priority. He said Poland was a strong supporter of the proposed banking union saying that it may well be critical in resolving the problem of the differential cost of credit which meant that ‘money was going to the wrong countries – to Germany and not to Italy or Ireland’.

He also called for the ECB to eliminate financial protectionism. Mr Rostowski said direct action was necessary to reassure markets that no member states of the Eurozone will be allowed to go bust. He called for an IMF style intervention mechanism with policing powers enabling an arms-length relationship between donors and beneficiaries. Mr Rostowski said that Poland must be made fully competitive before joining the Eurozone. He described it as a ‘deeply flawed project’ but that there was no alternative to Polish membership.

Other speakers at the event, which forms part of the Henry Grattan Public Lecture Series, were Professor Emeritus in Political Science Ron Hill and Assistant Professor in Political Science  Dr Jacqueline Hayden.