Poland is a country located in Europe. According to AbbreviationFinder, PL is the two-letter ISO code of Poland, and POL is the three-letter country abbreviation for Poland.
Poland. This year’s most important political event was the September parliamentary elections, which led to a shift in power. According to Countryaah, the national day of Poland is November 11. Governments and prime ministers change rapidly in Poland and the parliamentary elections led to the country getting its eighth government since the peaceful revolution in 1989. To the surprise of many and despite many cracks in the facade, the outgoing coalition between the ex-Communist Democratic Left Alliance (SLD) and the Peasant Party still had (PSL) has managed to keep the government together for a full four years, albeit with many government reforms and Prime Minister changes.
For the Peasant Party PSL (Polskie Stronnictwo Ludowe), the election was a disaster. The party lost 103 seats in parliament, the Sejm. Due to the large election defeat, Waldemar Pawlak was dismissed as party leader and replaced by the outgoing Minister of Agriculture Jaroslaw Kalinowski. Perhaps the most sensational thing about the 1997 parliamentary elections was that Marian Krzaklewski, the leader of the trade union Solidarity, in a short time managed to gather the Conservative opposition into a political force with Solidarity as the base. The new challenger, named Solidarity’s election campaign (AWS), took the entire 201 seats in the sejm. Together with the liberal coalition party Freedom Union (Unia Wolnosʹ ci), which captured 60 seats, the two new government parties had a satisfactory majority: 261 of the 460 seats of the Sejm.
The head of government became chemistry professor Jerzy Buzek (born 1940), a veteran of Solidarity but unknown to the general public. Buzek is a Protestant, which is unusual in Poland. He announced in his government statement that his center-right government will invest in Christian values. The powerful Catholic church took a low profile during the election campaign, but was then given the opportunity to enjoy some of the new government’s first decision: sexual education was abolished as its own school subject and abortion rights were curtailed.
In the government, several well-known names, such as the former Prime Minister Hanna Suchocka, now appear as Minister of Justice. The Freedom Union Party President Leszek Balcerowicz resigned as Finance Minister, Janusz Onyszkiewicz returned to the Ministry of Defense and the Solidarity Veteran and History Professor Bromislaw Geremek became Foreign Minister. The anti-Semitic Catholic Gdansk priest Henryk Jankowski protested that the Jew Geremek was given a ministerial post.
The turnout was 59%, which is seven percentage points higher than in the last parliamentary elections, in 1993. The actual winner, Solidarity leader Marian Krzaklewski, chose not to become prime minister. Instead, he has set his sights on the next presidential election.
Severe floods hit Poland during the summer. The rivers Oder and Neisse rose over their banks, 55 people died and the water bodies soaked an area twice the size of Gotland. Thousands of villages and towns became more or less uninhabitable. Wroclaw, Poland in size the fourth largest city, was badly injured, but the newly restored city center managed to save. The damages for the entire flood disaster were valued at SEK 22 billion. Sweden donated SEK 125 million in disaster relief.
The most important events in foreign policy were that NATO invited Poland to join the transatlantic defense alliance from. 1999 and that the EU starts membership negotiations with Poland. The country continued its successful economic policy. The new government’s more important tasks include restructuring of agriculture, mining and heavy industry. Budgetary policy must be tightened, the strong zloty will hurt exports and lead to a strong trade deficit.
2019 Parliamentary elections
The parliamentary elections were held on October 13, 2019. At the election, the Party of Law and Justice (PiS) gained 43.59 percent, against 37.58 percent in the 2015 election, but the same number of representatives as in the 2015 election (235). Following this result, PiS will establish a new majority government. With 48 senators, PiS lost the majority in the Senate.
The child benefit of PLN 500 per month, introduced in 2016 for families with more than one child, but not for the first child, was extended from September 2019 to also apply to the first child. During the election campaign, the Party for Law and Justice (PiS) pledged to favor an annual increase of 15 percent of the minimum wage in the 2019-2023 parliamentary term. LGBT people were characterized as a threat to Polish society. During the election campaign, PiS received open support from representatives of the country’s Catholic church.
Several parties to the left of PiS decided in advance of the election to form the following election alliances:
- Citizens ‘Platform (PO), the Party of Modern Poland and a New Green Party (Zieloni) topped the electoral list Citizens’ Coalition (Koalicja Obywatelska – KO)
- The Democratic Left Alliance (SLD) and two other left parties (Wiosna and Lewica Razem) topped the United Left (Lewica) electoral roll
- The Polish People’s Party (PSL) and the Party Kukiz’15 topped the electoral roll The Polish Coalition PSL (Koalicja Polska – PSL)
Common to these election alliances was that they strongly criticized the government’s efforts to reduce the independence of the justice sector and to make government television and radio channels a propaganda device for the government. They also emphasized, among other things, the need to strengthen the public health sector in Poland.
The election also included the German minority party (Mniejszość Niemiecka, MN) and a new political party, the Confederation for Freedom and Independence (Confederacja Wolność in Niepodległość).
Below are the percentages of the individual parties and the number of representatives in Sejm as a result of the election on October 13, 2019:
- Law and Justice Party (Prawo in Sprawiedliwość, PiS): 43.59 percent, 235 representatives
- Citizens Coalition (Koalicja Obywatelska – KO): 27.42 percent, 134 representatives
- United Left Election Alliance (Lewica): 12.56 percent, 49 representatives
- The Polish Coalition PSL (Koalicja Polska – PSL): 8.55 percent, 30 representatives
- Confederation for Freedom and Independence (Confederacja Wolność i Niepodległość): 6.81 percent, 11 representatives
- The German minority (Mniejszość Niemiecka – MN): 0.17 percent, one representative.
- The Party of Law and Justice received the highest support in the rural areas in the south and southeast, while the opposition parties received the largest support in the northwestern part of the country.
The turnout was 61.74 percent. This was the highest turnout in a parliamentary election since 1989.