Daniel Freund

17. June 2022 Anti-Corruption

Green light for Poland's Corona billions: Bad day for the rule of law in Europe

The Economic and Financial Affairs Council today (Friday) confirmed the EU Commission’s decision to approve Poland’s recovery and resilience plan. 35.4 billion euros of EU funds can now be disbursed to the Polish government in tranches if the respective milestones are met. The EU Commission’s approval of the Polish plan was heavily criticized because the agreed conditions are not sufficient to re-establish an independent judiciary in Poland. 

Daniel Freund, Green Member of the Budgetary Control Committee, comments:

“The Council’s approval of the Polish recovery plan is a mistake. The EU Commission’s conditions will not suffice to repair the rule of law in Poland. The Polish government has so far not been able to credibly explain how it will reestablish the independence of the country’s judiciary. We must not allow EU billions to flow into Member States with serious rule of law deficiencies. 

We can already see that the Commission’s decision has set a dangerous dynamic in motion. Viktor Orban is trying to use similar tricks to circumvent sanctions and to secure access to the recovery funds. The rule of law is turning into a bargaining chip.”