Poland: Donald Tusk wins historic re-election as prime minister
October 9, 2011
On 9 October, center-right Civic Platform (PO) led by the current Prime Minister Donald Tusk won Poland's general elections. According to the National Electoral Commission of the Republic of Poland, the PO garnered 207 seats in the 460-seat parliament, followed by the conservative Law and Justice (PiS) with 157 seats. The result marked a historic feat for Donald Tusk who was elected prime minister for a second consecutive term, the first time in Poland's modern democratic history. The ruling Civic Platform party will form a coalition with the agrarian Polish People's Party (PSL), its ally in the previous government, to hold a total of 235 seats, which will suffice for the majority in the Polish lower house. The business-friendly stance of the Civic Platform, as well as signs of a relative stability on the political scene, sent positive signals to financial markets. Although the government plans to postpone major reforms as the global economic outlook worsens, Donald Tusk stated that the government aims to reduce the fiscal deficit from the 7.9% of GDP recorded in 2010 to 5.6% in 2011 and an ambitious 2.9% in 2012. Consolidation of Poland's public finances remains one of the major concerns for economic authorities at present. According to the constitution, if the public debt to GDP ratio of 55% is breached, the government must initiate mandatory austerity measures.