Thursday, December 23, 2004

It's how you tell 'em

According to the Polish News Agency, "EU membership works miracles for Poland".

Over the course of the eight months since joining the EU, Poland has become the largest beneficiary of EU aid after Spain, Greece and Portugal. Over €2.5bn has been transferred from Brussels to Warsaw (against €1.3bn paid in contributions to the EU budget).

In addition, for the first time in eight years farmers' incomes have increased; over 70 percent in case of the richest farmers and by one third in the case of the less wealthy ones thanks to EU direct payments, hikes in food prices and increased exports to EU markets.

Businessmen are also satisfied with EU membership as over 90 percent have boosted their incomes. Export production has risen by 24 percent this year, companies plan to increase employment and start making new investments.

Most of the fears linked to EU accession, says the Agency, including massive emigration and a "brain drain" haven't materialised. One of the few negative aspects, however, was a rapid increase in the price of basic food products.

So that's all right then. Polish taxpayers are giving the EU pots of money to make richer farmers richer and line the pockets of businessmen, in exchange for which food prices have gone up across the board, with local shortages because so much material is being exported to the wealthy West - all against a promise of increased employment some time in the future, maybe.

Miracle? It must be how you tell 'em.

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