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Poland to reopen EU borders


Poland to reopen EU borders

A border worker checks the temperature of Poles returning from Germany
Photo: Odd Andersen/Agence France-Presse/Getty

Poland will reopen its borders with the EU today—permitting free travel without quarantine—and plans to reopen international flights in mid-June in a continuation of recent easing.

Poland has had fewer infections and deaths than many other EU members. However, a recent resurgence of COVID-19 has been catalysed by a mass outbreak in the Silesian coal mines.

Although the Polish economy has escaped the economic brunt of the pandemic borne by the rest of the bloc, a near 30-year period of economic growth has been upended nonetheless. Prime Minister Mateusz Morawiecki has advocated for a national reopening to restore trade normality with the EU as quickly as possible.

Mid-term to long-term economic predictions forecast a quick Polish rebound from the global recession, as the pre-pandemic economy was largely self-sufficient and diversified with low unemployment, strong consumer demand and a sound fiscal base. Today’s border reopening could expedite the recovery process by reigniting trade and international travel; it could likewise cultivate long-term trade growth between Poland and the EU as more countries shift away from China as a key supplier of goods. However, premature easing could also fuel the flames of contagion and set the nation back on its recovery timeline.

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