Economy 2 MIN READ

UPDATE 1-Polish ruling party favourite wins second term as central bank boss

May 12, 2022By Reuters

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Poland’s central bank governor secured a second term on Thursday after parliament approved his appointment, meaning a figure widely seen as close to the ruling nationalists will continue to guide monetary policy despite criticism of his record.

There had been doubts over whether the ruling nationalists Law and Justice (PiS) party could command a majority for the reappointment of Adam Glapinski, and the vote will come as a boost to a government that has had to rely on the votes of a smaller party not formally part of the ruling coalition.

There were 234 votes in favour of Glapinski serving a second term, 223 against and no abstentions.

With inflation in the largest economy in the European Union’s eastern wing running at its highest level in almost a quarter of a century, Glapinski has been criticised by opposition politicians and some economists for being too slow to start tightening monetary policy.

“Supporting Glapinski means supporting high inflation, high loan instalments, supporting things that destroy the lives of Poles,” opposition lawmaker Miroslaw Suchon told the chamber.

However, Glapinski has been robust in defence of his record, dedicating significant parts of his monthly press conferences to rebutting such criticism by pointing to high inflation globally and the unpredictability of the external shocks that have rocked Poland’s economy, such as the war in Ukraine and COVID-19.

PiS lawmaker Lukasz Schreiber said the opposition’s criticisms were unfounded. “Haven’t you noticed that inflation in Holland is the highest in 20 years, in the USA (the highest) in 40 years?” he asked.

Poland started a tightening cycle in October, later than central banks in the Czech Republic and Hungary. Its main interest rate currently stands at 5.25%.

Glapinski’s links to PiS leader Jaroslaw Kaczynski go back decades, and in the 1990s they co-founded the Centre Agreement party, a predecessor of PiS.

(Reporting by Alan Charlish, Pawel Florkiewicz, Anna Koper; Editing by Hugh Lawson)

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