WARSAW, Poland (AP) — Poland’s prime minister argued strongly Tuesday against the country’s adoption of the European Union’s common euro currency in the foreseeable future, claiming that its recent adoption in Croatia caused “chaos” and a cost of living spike.
Premier Mateusz Morawiecki said that replacing Poland’s national currency, the zloty, with the euro would boost inflation that’s already above 17% and push up the cost of living for Poles.
Morawiecki maintained that EU member Croatia, which switched to the euro on Jan. 1, was seeing “chaos” and prices that are reaching “exorbitant” levels.
“That chaos in prices in Croatia should serve as a warning for us,” Morawiecki told a news conference.
He said income levels in Poland should approach the EU average before the country can start thinking of adopting the euro. Average monthly earnings in the country are currently less than half the EU average.
Nations within the 27-member EU are expected to adopt the common currency at some point — although Denmark has secured a special exemption — but there is no deadline and some have not yet started the process.
Poland has not set a date for converting to the euro.
With general elections scheduled in the fall and surveys suggesting the ruling right-wing coalition may lose its control of Parliament, Morawiecki used the issue to hit at the opposition, saying he was “warning” against its leaders who are advocating adopting the euro.