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The Warsaw Voice » Comments » March 5, 2008
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From the news editor
March 5, 2008   
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After their first 100 days in office, the ruling Civic Platform (PO) and Polish People's Party (PSL) coalition took stock of their initial successes and mapped out their most ambitious long-term plans. These extend way beyond the current parliament, which ends in 2011.

Prime Minister Donald Tusk talked about his plans for the next 3,000 days. Opinion polls, which rate the PO-led government's popularity at 60 percent, obviously give him cause for optimism. The opposition, meanwhile, has not rolled over. Law and Justice (PiS) leader and former prime minister Jarosław Kaczyński has made no secret of his intention to claw his way back into power and is working hard to convince voters of the political and economic waywardness of the government. Polls give his party just over 25 percent so he is going to have an uphill battle-even if he does enjoy the support of his twin brother, President Lech Kaczyński.

Both Kaczyński brothers have criticized Poland's recent decision to recognize Kosovo's independence. The crisis over the former Serbian province might prove long and intractable for the European Union and might see EU, the United States and Russia squaring off. Serbia has been one of Russia's most trusted allies in this part of Europe lately. The PO-PSL decision to recognize Kosovo has dropped Poland into the conflict.

Andrzej Wajda's Katyń, ranked as one of the most important Polish films of the last few decades, failed to sway the judges at the Academy Awards, although Peter and the Wolf, a Polish-British co-production, won the Oscar for Best Animated Short Film. This says a lot about the Polish animated film industry, which has long been highly regarded internationally.

The Polish economy is still growing at twice the EU average, despite having slackened off a fraction. Poland's annual GDP growth of over 5 percent will bring higher inflation in its wake-3.8 percent as opposed to the 2.8 previously forecast-but even this figure is below the central bank's inflationary target. More good news is that unemployment, economic enemy number one just a couple of years ago, has also been tipped to fall further.
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