Disinfo: Poland has lost 130 billion euros from its membership in the EU throughout 16 years

Summary

Poland contributed 58 billion euros to the EU budget and received from this budget 181 billion euros. Although, if we add to this calculation obvious costs coming from EU membership, this balance becomes extremely unfavourable – 310 billion euros in total costs and 181 billion euros in profits in the form of EU funds. It means that Poland lost almost EUR 130 billion euros throughout 16 years of its membership in the EU.

Disproof

This narrative is focused on the spread of disinformation on the allegedly unbeneficial EU membership for countries of Eastern and Central Europe.

The calculations of “obvious costs” coming from EU membership presented in this article (lost profits from labour migration; use of Polish assets by Western “capital”; rapture of economic ties with Russia) are not shared by reputable economists.

There is no doubt among economists and international research centres that EU membership has been extremely beneficial for Poland in all aspects, in particular, the economy, finances and investments. After its EU accession, Poland started to be perceived as an economic success story.

During the last two decades, Poland has become one of the most dynamic economies in Europe. It enjoys uninterrupted economic growth since the early 1990s, with average GDP growth of 4.2% a year, doubling its GDP between 1990 and 2015. This growth allowed Poland to narrow the economic gap with the most developed EU countries – the Polish GDP (at PPP) has increased from 32% to 60% of the Western European average (EU-15). Read more about how the EU membership helped Poland to transform its economy here.

See similar cases – Poland is a country with the highest social inequality in the EU and the current socio-economic situation of Poland is worse than in communist times.

publication/media

  • Reported in: Issue 224
  • DATE OF PUBLICATION: 11/12/2020
  • Outlet language(s) Polish
  • Countries and/or Regions discussed in the disinformation: EU, Poland
  • Keywords: EU budget, Euro-scepticism, migration, economy, Eastern Europe, Economic difficulties, Conspiracy theory
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Disinfo: Crimea reunited with Russia after a referendum and Russia is not part of the conflict in Ukraine

Relations between Moscow and the West have deteriorated due to the situation in Ukraine and around Crimea, which was reunited with Russia after a referendum on the peninsula. Moscow was accused of interfering and sanctions against it were imposed. Russia retaliated, embarking on a course of import substitution. Also, the authorities have repeatedly noted that it is counterproductive to talk with Moscow in the language of sanctions. Russia has repeatedly stressed that it does not participate in the conflict in Ukraine and is not a subject of the Minsk settlement agreements.

Disproof

Several recurring pro-Kremlin disinformation narratives about the illegal annexation of Crimea by Russia, the war in Ukraine, and the ineffectiveness of sanctions against Russia.

No international body recognises the so-called referendum in Crimea. The UN General Assembly adopted a resolution entitled “Territorial integrity of Ukraine”, stating that the referendum in Crimea was not valid and could not serve as a basis for any change in the status of the peninsula. On 17 December 2018, the UN General Assembly confirmed its non-recognition of the illegal annexation of Crimea.

Disinfo: EU sanctions exist because of the conflict in Donbas and Crimea joining Russia

The European Union imposed sanctions on Russia in 2014 against the subsequent accession of Crimea to Russia and the armed conflict in Donbas.

Disproof

Recurring pro-Kremlin disinformation narrative about Crimea willingly joining Russia and portraying the war in Donbas as an internal armed conflict.

The war in Eastern Ukraine is a well-documented act of ongoing aggression by Russian armed forces, since February 2014.

Disinfo: Europe attacks Russia in "vaccines' war"

Russia is following the traditional way to produce its anti-COVID vaccines, initially Sputnik V and now the EpiVacCorona, while Western pharmaceuticals are using a new, genetic type methodology which influences and changes human RNA. This justifies why Russian vaccines do not cause any side effects. However, bureaucrats and officials from European countries and the EU are trying to discredit the Russian vaccines, saying that there are attempts by the Russian mafia to steal the secrets of Western vaccines and even laying the ground for sanctions against Russia.

Disproof

This is a mix of several recurrent pro-Kremlin disinformation narratives about alleged anti-Russian bias in the West and plots against Russia’s greatness.

There is credible evidence that the Russian government pressed Russian scientists and researchers to be the first to find a vaccine against COVID-19, and did everything at hand to shorten the process, raising concerns about the safety and efficiency of the Sputnik V vaccine.