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Polish tax office chief to be finance minister, says PM

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By Reuters

WARSAW – Tax administration head Magdalena Rzeczkowska will be appointed as Poland’s finance minister, the prime minister said on Tuesday, ending months of speculation over who would take charge at a ministry thrown into crisis by botched tax reforms.

The government’s flagship ‘Polish Deal’ economic programme was supposed to put more money in the pockets of ordinary Poles, but when it was introduced at the turn of the year some workers like teachers found less in their pay packets while tax professionals criticised the scheme’s complexity.

The resulting furore spelled the end for Tadeusz Koscinski, a close ally of Prime Minister Mateusz Morawiecki, who resigned as finance minister in February.

“I submitted a proposal to the president that he should appoint Magdalena Rzeczkowska as the new finance minister,” Morawiecki told a news conference.

A graduate of the University of Warsaw, Rzeczkowska has worked at the finance ministry since 2002.

President Andrzej Duda is due to make the appointment at 1300 GMT.

Poland’s ruling nationalists Law and Justice (PiS) have won two parliamentary elections since 2015 on a platform that mixed conservative social policies with generous social benefits designed to boost the spending power of ordinary Poles.

However, they are facing more difficult economic conditions in the run-up to elections scheduled for 2023, as inflation surges into double digits in part due to the war in Ukraine.