Radio Gdansk English Service: Polish government approves zero deficit budget for 2020

In a boost for Poland’s ruling party, the Polish government approved a 2020 budget last Monday which boasts a zero deficit.
According to Prime Minister Mateusz Morawiecki, the feat “was possible thanks to better tax collection,” and the elimination of the “tax mafia.” Other analysts, however, argue that the budget deficit was offset by one-time revenues generated by the sale and acquisition of 5G frequencies and CO2 emission certifications, as well as pension reform fees.

The bill envisages state revenues and expenses balancing at PLN 435.3 billion or EUR 102.2 billion. Minus the one-time revenues, the budget puts Poland’s projected government deficit at 1.2% of GDP, which is well below the EU-mandated cap of 3%.

By comparison, the UK’s budget deficit for the fiscal year ending in March 2019 was similar to Poland’s at 1.9% of GDP according to the UK’s Office for National Statistics, while the US saw their deficit balloon to 4.9% of GDP in the same period.

Source: PAP,,,,

Saint Stephen’s Day and Boxing Day celebrated around the world

Today is Swięty Szczepan (St. Stephen’s Day), a day which Poles across the country will celebrate by visiting family and friends, attending religious services, or singing kolędy (Polish Christmas carols).

Most of the English-speaking world, however, knows today as Boxing Day, one of the busiest shopping days of the year. The holiday is celebrated by countries connected with the former British Empire, including Canada, Australia, New Zealand, South Africa, Greenland, Uganda, Fiji, Hong Kong, and Belize, along with approximately 20 other countries excluding the US.

Boxing Day day is typically marked by giving gifts to service providers, such as mail carriers, and cleaners, collecting money or doing works for charity, or watching a traditional pantomime, an interactive theatrical production traditionally based on children’s fairy tales.

Comic operetta of Stanisław Moniuszko opens this evening

For those who missed out on the pantomime tradition this year, the comic Polish operetta “Karmaniola or From Sasa to Las” returns to the stage at Teatr Wybrzeże this evening.

The opera, which was last performed some 30 years ago, is being offered as part of “Year of Moniuszko” celebrating the 200th anniversary of the birth of the famed Polish composer, conductor and teacher.
Occuring during the French Revolution, the operetta has been described as “a comedy of errors… full of sudden twists and turns, crazy chases, saber and pistol fights,” all framed around the central conflict of choosing between heart and homeland.

The performance begins this evening at 19:00, and runs through January 19th, 2020.


10th annual nationwide „Share a Meal with the Homeless” campaign underway across Poland.

In over 55 cities including Gdańsk, volunteers will be collecting food items left over from the holidays and taking them to local eateries, including the Tri-City Food Bank (Bank Żywności w Trójmieście). Donors can have food picked up at their home or drop of food at designed eateries after completing a simple sign-up form online.

Even if you don’t have food to donate, you can still make a difference as a volunteer driver. According to the co-organizer of the campaign Martyna Dakowska, “there is never a shortage” of food donors, but finding suitable drivers is difficult. She urges anyone with a few spare hours, a driving license, and a vehicle to sign up by visiting the foundation website and filling out a simple form. The campaign will run until midday on December 28th.

For more information on the “Share a Meal” campaign, visit

Source: PAP


Today will be partly cloudy with some patches of clear sky and sun mixed with possible light drizzling rain in the early afternoon and overnight. Temperatures will be similar to yesterday, with highs around 3-5 degrees Celsius or the mid 30s to low 40s Fahrenheit. Temperatures will drop overnight but remain above freezing, with Friday set to be overcast and colder.




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