We sometimes hear that the only type of liberalism we need today is “political liberalism” while classical liberal ideas in the economy can be neglected. The view that we need only political freedom, without a broad range of economic freedoms, is not isolated and requires a response.
On the whole, CEE countries – including Poland – still positively stand out in this respect among its European peers. Yet, this might soon come to an end as Poland’s governing party (LAw and Justice) is planning to introduce significant restrictions on Sunday trade.
French President Emmanuel Macron has embarked on a mission to Central and Eastern Europe with a strange idea. He lobbies for a directive to shorten the stay and to increase the salaries of our posted workers, from the minimum wage level, to salaries equal up to the level of French or German employees in the sector.
The proposed restrictions to posting of workers disproportionally hit the poorer Member States from Eastern and Southern Europe. However, these countries should not push for retaliatory regulations to protect their home markets, but to block “equal pay for equal work in the same place” and further liberalise trade in services.
The VAT base in Poland has its weaknesses due to both domestic and EU polices. National authorities overuse reduced rates, making the VAT system too complicated and problematic for businesses while a zero rate on intra-EU trade incentivizes fraud.
The objective of the study “The Seen and the Unseen Effects of the Entry of Modern Retail1 in Bulgaria: Facts Against Myths” is to examine a number of popular claims that have been circulating in the media, and public debates. They often become grounds for political action and even legislative initiatives against modern retail formats.
Since the great expansion of the EU in 2004, we are constantly hearing concerns about so-called social dumping from hard-core, traditional EU members. What at first seems to be an action against imminent threats to social standards in Western Europe is in fact a sophisticated instrument to eliminate competition from new EU members.
Two interesting debates are being led simultaneously in Slovakia. One on subsidies to support the mining of lignite in the upper Nitra region and the other on the unconditional basic income for all. The interconnection between the two could bring so many positive effects that I am left to wonder why nobody has thought of this so far.
Business in Ukraine is slowly recovering from the economic crisis that hit the country several years ago. Entrepreneurs have little trust to the government but plan to speed up their growth and want the authorities to provide fair and favorable conditions for businesses.
The Ministry of Finance proposed to reform customs in Ukraine with the aim of better transparency and predictability. The model of the reform and changes in custom procedures is currently debated between the Ministry of Finance and the representatives of the Parliament and civil society. The reform will hopefully be implemented by the end of 2017.