The New Left wants to build new apartments for rent. Włodzimierz Czarzasty, chairman of the party, argues that the KPO includes the construction of 76,000. apartments. This is not the first time that Left politicians have provided this number, but neither in the KPO of 2021 nor in the latest description of the so-called milestones – there is no such record.
The New Left goes to the elections with the slogan of greater availability of housing. On September 2, Magdalena Biejat, MP from the Left Together and candidate for the Senate, announced the construction of 300,000 apartments “in a very simple way”. “The state allocates money for this, local governments are building apartments. Together we will build housing estates with green areas, spacious playgrounds, and access to public transport” – she argued.
On September 8, the postulate presented by Magdalena Biejat was explained on the RMF FM radio by Włodzimierz Czarzasty, the leader of the New Left.
76 thousand apartments, [ich] the construction is included in the KPO (National Reconstruction Plan – ed.). At my request, in KPO. If there is a change of government, the KPO will come immediately. 76 thousand apartments. This hand proposed these provisions and it is placed.
In RMF FM, Czarzasty also talked about the construction of new apartments in cities ruled by leftist presidents. He also talked about the five billion zlotys allocated in the KPO for health care and again mentioned the PLN 76,000 included in the plan. apartments. “Does that mean it’s almost a third?” – He was asking. He argued that none of the New Left’s political competitors had a better housing program.
In Konkret24 already twice we described media reports about a similar number – 75,000 apartments registered in the KPO. This number was not included in the 2021 version of the KPO, nor in the latest description of the so-called milestones.
75 thousand apartments agreed by the Left in negotiations with PiS
On May 4, 2021, MPs from the Left voted together with MPs from PiS, Koalicja Polska (PSL), Poland 2050 and Kukiz’15 for the ratification of the decision of the Council of the European Union on the system of the European Union’s own resources – i.e. for the creation of a special fund of EUR 750 billion. This Reconstruction Fund was intended to support the economies of EU countries in recovering from the pandemic.
In fact, the “yes” vote was a form of support for the Polish National Reconstruction Plan – each country of the 27 EU members was required to submit a program to the European Commission on how it intends to spend its part of the EU fund. By 2026, Poland has exactly PLN 160,967,579,300 to use, i.e. EUR 35,363,500,000 (EUR 23.9 billion in the form of grants and EUR 11.5 billion in the form of loans).
After Solidarna Polska refused to ratify the Reconstruction Fund in 2021, PiS – in order to win the parliamentary majority in the vote – agreed to the proposals of the Left regarding the goals of the KPO. In conversations on April 27, 2021 it was agreed that the KPO funds would finance the construction of PLN 75,000. cheap apartments for rent.
KPO version from April 2021: record of 71.7 thousand apartments
On April 30, 2021, Mateusz Morawiecki’s government approved the KPO, and on May 3 it sent it to the European Commission for approval. The document included the following entry: “It can be estimated that in the years 2022-2026 financing will be secured for the creation of approx. 71.7 thous. apartments“. So not 75,000 apartments. It is worth noting that the KPO contains the phrase “financing will be secured” – which does not necessarily mean that the planned number of apartments for rent will actually be built by 2026.
In May 2021, the spokesman for the Left parliamentary club, Marek Kacprzak, when asked by Konkret24 about the number recorded in the KPO, explained that this is a calculation based on the average costs provided. “The estimate of 71.7 thousand is one of the results (quite a safety measure) of the calculated range between 67.5 thousand and 81.7 thousand apartments, which results from the estimates of the Ministry” – said Kacprzak. He also assessed that the calculations did not take into account new apartments that would be built after renovations and reconstruction of vacant buildings. He added that the number was 75,000. apartments also results from calculations by Left experts.
On May 3, 2021, at a press conference, Waldemar Buda, Deputy Minister of Funds, announcing that the KPO had been sent to the European Commission, said that the document included all comments negotiated with the Left. As Marek Kacprzak informed us, these arrangements were not included in any separate document, but are included in the KPO, which the government sent to Brussels.
Marek Kacprzak, now asked by Konkret24 about Włodzimierz Czarzasty’s statement, admits that “the draft of the National Recovery and Resilience Plan sent to the European Commission in May 2021 includes investment B3.4.2. Investments in green multi-family housing, assuming the construction of 71.7 thousand apartments for rent”. He points out, however, that the “KPO document of June 2022, available on the Polish government’s website, shows investment B3.5.1 Investments in energy-efficient housing for low- and medium-income households. This document does not mention the number of 71.7 thousand apartments per rent” (original spelling). The e-mail ends with the assurance that “After the change of government, the Left will strive to restore the original version of housing investments under the KPO.”
Włodzimierz Czarzasty did not agree to an interview with Konkret24.
In the document published on April 11, 2022 on the website of the Left, “Housing is a right, not a commodity” there is already a postulate to build 70,000 apartments for rent as part of a ten-year plan financed both from the KPO and from budget funds.
KPO version approved by the European Commission: provision for 12.4 thousand apartments
Neither the number 75 thousand nor 71.7 thousand. However, it is not included in the latest version of the Polish KPO, which the European Commission approved on June 1.
The set of Polish reforms and investments has been described in the annex to the EC decision. This is where the so-called “milestones” – i.e. a set of requirements on which advance payments for the implementation of KPO objectives depend.
The construction of apartments for rent is mentioned only in section B3.5.1 “Investments in energy-efficient housing for low- and middle-income households”. The tables with the schedule for monitoring and implementing individual KPO objectives show that by the end of the second quarter of 2026, a 12,355 apartments for rent to people with low incomes.
He also gives this number Ministry of Development Funds and Regional Policy: “12,355 new apartments in energy-efficient buildings (for households with low and medium income)”.
In response to our questions, the Ministry of Funds and Regional Policy referred us to the Ministry of Development and Technology. According to the response of this ministry, the Polish side wanted to obtain funds from the KPO to support the construction of housing for people with low and medium incomes, but “as part of negotiations with the European Commission, the Commission agreed only to finance housing with the highest energy standards (higher by 20 % from the standards applicable in Polish regulations), which additionally must meet strict energy and environmental rules. There is further information that there will be 12,355 such apartments – the support for them will amount to EUR 755 million, based on construction costs from 2021 and “additionally estimating that such apartments will be more expensive than standard ones by about 20%”.
The ministry then explains that in the period from 2021 to August 2023, support was granted to create 41.5 thousand apartments. Taking these results into account, it is possible to achieve approx. 75 thousand. housing by 2026. However, it should be emphasized again that this is an initiative of the government, with no connection to the subsequent political negotiations on KPO” (bold from the editors).
Main photo source: Albert Zawada/PAP