(Corrects percentage of precincts reporting in second paragraph.)
Oct. 10 (Bloomberg) -- The Polish Peasants Party, the junior coalition partner in the Cabinet for the last four years, is “the most proven and credible” ally for the next government, Presidential Minister Slawomir Nowak said.
Prime Minister Donald Tusk, whose Civic Platform party won yesterday’s general election, failed to gain a majority in the 460-seat Parliament, according to results from 93 percent of precincts. An alliance with the Peasants Party would have a majority.
Tusk needs to ensure passing legislation, including the 2012 state budget with a deficit within the European Union’s requirement of 3 percent of gross domestic product. Failure to rein in the shortfall may lead to cuts in EU funds that helped the country to avoid recession two years ago.
“The new Parliament seems to be very interesting, giving more coalition options,” Nowak, who is returning to parliament as a Platform deputy, said in an interview with private station Radio RMF. “Still, we expect that the coalition that passed the exam in ruling for the past four years will also be able to lead Poland further.”
Three other parties won enough support to exceed the 5 percent threshold to gain seats in parliament. The largest opposition group, Law & Justice, received 30 percent, the Palikot Movement, founded by former ruling-party politician Janusz Palikot, got 9.9 percent of the vote, and the Democratic Left Alliance won 8.2 percent.
Poland’s economy faces “worse external conditions” for the next four to six quarters, Jerzy Hausner, a member of the rate- setting Monetary Policy Council, and Miroslaw Gronicki, an adviser to Governor Marek Belka, wrote in an article in the Polish version of Newsweek today. The country needs to aim for economic growth of between 3 percent and 4 percent and must hold the zloty in a “reasonable range” of fluctuation to keep the economy “in the safety zone,” they said.
EU aid has added an average of 1.5 percentage points to economic growth each year, according to Poland’s Regional Development Ministry, and remains essential for economic expansion as budget cuts may limit consumer demand and public investment. Poland’s government sees the economy growing 4 percent this year and in 2012.
--Editors: Balazs Penz, Nathaniel Espino
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