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The Warsaw Voice » Comments » November 12, 2008
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From the NEWS editor
November 12, 2008   
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The European soccer championships in 2012 are a priority challenge for Poland, a project that is at the center of attention for the authorities, businesses and the media here-as well as the public. Marcin Herra, chairman of the PL2012 company, which the government has established to coordinate preparations for Euro 2012, talks to the Voice about his work, achievements so far, and the enormous tasks facing his company in the coming months.

Reaction has been somewhat mixed in Poland about Barack Obama being elected the 44th president of the United States. While the public here seems to be as enthusiastic about Obama as voters in America and a large part of the world-and they too look forward to a sea change in the way the U.S. administration is seen abroad-politicians tend to be more skeptical. First, they are pointing to what they say are excellent relations between the Polish government and the outgoing Republican administration in the United States. Second, they are concerned about projects such as the American "missile shield," which the democrats could rethink after Obama takes charge. Consequently, it may turn out that reforms proposed by Obama will not prove the best fit with Poland's political interests.

According to forecasts from the European Commission, the Polish economy will grow 3.8 percent next year, mustering the fourth highest growth rate in the European Union, after Slovakia, Romania and Bulgaria. The Commission's experts gave a less optimistic projection for the Polish economy than that of the government in Warsaw. The Polish finance ministry expects that the country's 2009 GDP will grow by 5 percent, down from 5.4 percent this year. Still, even the European Commission figure will be a success if it is reached because many other EU economies may contract instead of expanding.
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