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2004 | 12 | 3-24

Article title

Assessment of public finance condition in Poland - myths and reality

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The author argues that views forecasting a break-down of Poland's public finance on the threshold of the 21st century are highly exaggerated and little credible. At the same time another approach to the problem of public finance crisis, differing from that hitherto used, is proposed. The presently dominating approach takes into account above all the interests of the financial markets, while paying only limited attention to the level and scope of the needs fulfilled from the public funds. The proposed modification of the approach consists in looking at the condition of the public finance from the point of view of the addressee and subject of this finance, i.e. the citizen. Such an approach allows to hold an opinion that the public finance crisis in Poland consisted in a substantial drop since 1990, and especially over the last years, of the level and scope of fulfilling social needs from the public funds. As opposed, for example, to the budget disequilibrium that usually assumes a cyclical nature, the thus defined public finance crisis entails consequences that are perceptible not only today but, more importantly, also in the remote perspective. For today, they mean deprivation of a part of the population of access to public values; for the future, a slower general progress of the country, losses in the human capital resources, weakening of the country's international competitiveness. The author points out that in the fiscal policy the losses from growing public debt are always retrievable, whereas the shortsighted decisions enforcing, at any price, a dogma of the public finance equilibrium can bring about irreparable losses in the country's human development.







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  • M. Gmytrasiewicz, Uniwersytet Warszawski, Wydzial Nauk Ekonomicznych, ul. Dluga 44/50, 00-241 Warszawa, Poland


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