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Law and Justice Convention. Mateusz Morawiecki on the economy, inflation, salaries, labor market, pensions. The economist comments

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The fight against unemployment, additional benefits for pensioners, an increase in salaries, the end of buying “on a notebook” – according to Prime Minister Matusz Morawiecki, these are the main successes of eight years of rule by Law and Justice. Alicja Defratyka, an economist and author of the Interesting Numbers project, compared the statements of the head of the Polish government with data on the economy in social media.

Prime Minister about “the end of shopping for a notebook”

During a speech at the PiS program convention, Prime Minister Mateusz Morawiecki he assessed that “probably only a deaf person, without a heart, would not notice that it is in our times, the times of PiS rule shopping is over – to a huge extent – and the purchase of school textbooks in August stopped giving sleepless nights to many Polish families.

Alicja Defratyka noted that the data presented by Szlachetna Paczka indicate a large increase in the number of Poles in extreme poverty. “Prime Minister Mateusz Morawiecki said that the PiS governments had finished shopping for notebooks, people were earning more and more. He only forgot to add that according to EAPN forecasts (European Anti Poverty Network – ed.) presented by Szlachetna Paczka in 2022 the number of Poles living in extreme poverty increased by 859 thousand. compared to 2021. 6.5%, or about 2.5 million people, lived in extreme poverty – the same as in 2015. PiS spent hundreds of billions of zlotys on various social programs, and the same number of people live in extreme poverty,” she wrote on social media.

Five dollar job

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Prime Minister Morawiecki also spoke about low wages under the rule of PO. – They have no bread, let them eat cakes – this was the credo of our predecessors. What was the result? Work for five, four or three zlotys an hour – accused the head of the Polish government.

In the commentary to the Prime Minister’s words, the economist noted that such low wages had already occurred during the first rule of Law and Justice. “Again, Prime Minister Morawiecki said about work for PLN 5 during the rule of the Civic Platform. And that was the case during the first rule of PiS. Minimum hourly rate is from 2017, but recalculating minimum wage for 176 h (22 days, 8 h): 2005: 849/176 = PLN 4.8 gross; 2006: 899/176 = PLN 5.1“- enumerated Alicja Defratyka.

Investments at the lowest level

Mateusz Morawiecki also referred to the issue of the level of investment in Poland. – Our opponents accuse us that the ratio of investments to GDP is still not at the level we assumed (25 percent – ed.). It is true, there is much to be done here, admitted the Prime Minister. However, he stated that “what the state can do (…) is done with a vengeance”. He added that comparing the number of public investments from the times of PiS and PO “is heaven and earth”.

Referring to the words of Mateusz Morawiecki, Alicja Defratyka noted that the data on the share of investments in relation to GDP are the lowest since the data on this subject has been collected. “Prime Minister Morawiecki admitted that the level of investment is actually not what it should be, but added that they invest more than their predecessors. So it’s bad, but it’s very good. Let me remind you: investments in Poland as a percentage of GDP fell under the rule of PiS from 20.4% in 2015 to 16.8% in 2022, reaching the lowest value since 1995, i.e. since when data for Poland are available“- we read in the economist’s entry.

About unemployment and “millions of dramas”

During the program convention, Mateusz Morawiecki described the problem of unemployment as “the bane of the Third Republic”. – Under the rule of our predecessors, unemployment reached 2 million 350 thousand people. This is not just a number, there are millions of dramas behind it, said the Prime Minister.

Alicja Deratyka countered these claims with data according to which unemployment in Poland reached a higher level during the first PiS government. “Prime Minister Mateusz Morawiecki spoke about dramatically high unemployment during the rule of PO-PSL and human dramas. Let me remind you that in 2006, when he was prime minister Jaroslaw Kaczynski unemployment was 13.9 percent. and was the highest in the entire European Union. There was no such situation when Donald Tusk was Prime Minister. Never after that was unemployment as high as during the first PiS government“- wrote the expert.

Pensions below the minimum

Mateusz Morawiecki also talked about taxes for large corporations and the proceeds from them, which allow for financing additional benefits for pensioners. – CIT alone – it’s a tax on large companies, because we lowered the tax for small companies, and left 19 percent for large corporations and did not allow them to go abroad – so the taxation of large corporations alone, the PLN 60 billioncovers 500+, the thirteenth and significant part of the fourteenth pension – said the prime minister.

In the context of seniors, Alicja Defratyka pointed out that under the PiS rule, the number of people receiving a pension lower than the minimum increased – from March it is PLN 1,588 gross, a year earlier – PLN 1,338. “During the rule of PiS in the years 2015-2022, the number of people who received a pension from ZUS lower than the minimum in a given year (the so-called starvation pension) increased almost 5 times – increase by 289 thousand. people (from 76.3 thousand in 2015 to 365.3 thousand in 2022)” – she commented on Twitter.

In turn, in the context of 500+ and high inflation, the economist pointed out the rapidly decreasing real value of the benefit, which had not been indexed since 2016.

“Cumulative inflation since April 2016, i.e. since it became operational program 500 plus, by April 2023 it was 45.6 percent. This means that 500 plus is now worth PLN 343.

Debt to GDP ratio

The prime minister also said on Saturday that “this year public debt will amount to 47-48 percent. GDP – in relation to GDP is falling, despite large expenditures on the protection of jobs, the anti-crisis shield or defense against high energy prices; the EU average is well over 75 percent.

According to Alicja Defratyka, only high inflation contributed to such results. “Prime Minister Mateusz Morawiecki says how the debt-to-GDP ratio is falling. Yes, but this is ONLY the result of high inflation. (…) If it wasn’t for galloping inflation, the debt-to-GDP ratio would not be 49.1 percent, but would increase to as much as 55.7 This is 6.6 pp. of GDP difference” – the expert pointed out, referring to the calculations of Sławomir Dudek, former director of the Department of Macroeconomic Policy at the Ministry of Finance, currently .

Main photo source: PAP/Leszek Szymanski

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