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After EU summit what impact will subsidies at cost of investment have?

“Europe has said yes to us, let us now say yes to Europe,” Premier Leszek Miller said after he returned from the Copenhagen summit. The EU entry terms have won media approval, quieted unrest in the coalition and won backing even from political opponents. Miller's team adopted a tough stance in talks with the EU, which ruffled feathers in Brussels, but proved popular in the country.

Hard bargaining won more than €1 billion in budget rebates in 2005 and 2006, minor concession on milk quotas, more money for border safety and the right to pay more aid to their farmers. But the rebate was not new money, just capital switched from harder-to-access funds. Paying higher subsidies to farmers, in turn, depends on co-financing from the national budget. Critics argue all that has happened is that funds have been switched from infrastructure investments to subsidizing farmers.

(WBJ 16.xii.02)

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