World Economy

Brexit has 'demystified the European Union': Polish finmin

Justina Crabtree; special to
Brexit has demystified the EU: Polish finmin

The U.K.'s Brexit vote may have changed attitudes to the European Union across the continent, Polish Finance Minister Pawel Szalamacha told CNBC Friday, adding that the decision showed that the EU is "no longer the only choice for the nations of Europe."

Szalamacha suggested that more countries could be prompted to leave the 28-nation bloc, such as those "with a strong sense of identity, some of the Nordic countries," or even some countries who may "feel that their destiny … is no longer within their hands."

Apple and EU dispute a 'head on collision': Polish Finmin

He added, "I don't think it's a sensible policy just to rely on the decisions of the major international players," not least because "some policy mistakes were committed."

Szalamacha also spoke of decentralizing power from the EU's headquarters in Brussels, as Poland "deserves its own development agenda." He added that "the country needs to formulate on its own" and "put more stress on its domestic resources."

With regards to Poland's own governance, Szalamacha asserted that there was "no discrimination against the foreign capital" in his country, despite its hard hitting banking and retail taxation structures which some have accused of privileging domestic companies. Szalamacha compared Poland's banking levy in particular to those in several other European countries.

He asserted that his government's policy was "stable and predictable."

The minister also took a balanced approach to Apple and the European Commission's taxation dispute, acknowledging that whilst the former and its fellow multinationals may be obtaining unfairly "sweet deals" in countries such as Ireland and Luxembourg, the European Commission may be overreaching in instructing Ireland's government.

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