Poland. Reviving a new Weimar Triangle with an eye to the future EU budget.

4 Sep 2010

President Bronislaw Komorowski has been in Paris and Berlin this week for talks with President Nicholas Sarkozy and Chancellor Angela Merkel. On his first trip abroad as President of Poland since being elected in July, Komorowski has said that reinvigorating the Weimar Triangle  – a diplomatic agreement signed by Poland, Germany and France in 1991 – is one of his key objectives.

 Regular meetings of leaders and ministers from these countries, which had been held from the 1990s, stalled during the presidency of Komorowski’s late predecessor Lech Kaczynski.

 Next year the EU‘s 27 countries will launch negotiations on the shape of the 2014-2021 budget. Many politicians are calling for austerity following the global economic crisis, which has emptied government coffers and increased national debts. “We expect the cohesion fund to be maintained,” Komorowski said, referring to the main EU aid fund. “It is so important to make solidarity real, to make development levels more equal,” he added in a news conference.

 Poland is to receive some 67 billion euros in regional aid from the bloc’s long-term budget for 2007-2013. Other former communist countries from central Europe also benefit substantially from EU funds.

 Some experts believe that the bloc’s budget will remain at least at the current level of around 1 percent of the Union’s economic output. The budget talks will also concern the future of the EU’s farm subsidies, which account for more than 40 percent of the expenditure. A special Parliament committee met in July.

 In Berlin President Komorowski visited the Sachsenhausen concentration camp memorial near the capital, together with German President Christian Wulff, to pay respects to a war hero. He then explained that this is “a way to demonstrate our shared view of our terrible past.”

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