We do not have a loan in South Korea, assured Polish Finance Minister Magdalena Rzeczkowska. On Monday, she referred to media reports that indicated that Poland had taken out a PLN 76 billion loan
We do not have a loan in South Korea, assured Polish Finance Minister Magdalena Rzeczkowska. On Monday, she referred to media reports that indicated that Poland had taken out a $19 billion loan from South Korea for the purchase of military equipment.
On Monday, Minister Rzeczkowska took part in the 6th edition of the Vision for Development Forum in the panel entitled: Challenges faced by the Polish economy in the context of Russia's attack on Ukraine. During the meeting, the minister, answering a question from the audience regarding media reports indicating that Poland had taken out a PLN 76 billion loan in South Korea for the purchase of military equipment, replied that Poland had not taken out such a loan.
"Minister (of national defence) Mariusz Błaszczak never said that it would be financed with a loan in South Korea. This is a media confusion that arose after the Prime Minister's last visit to Korea", she said. She explained that during a three-day visit to South Korea in early July, Błaszczak talked about "the commitments already made and their implementation, i.e. the supply of equipment that will gradually arrive in the contracted pool."
She assured that Deputy Prime Minister Błaszczak also discussed investments from the Korean side and cooperation with the Polish defense industry.
"The fact that the issue of credit appears in the media space, I perceive it in terms of a certain cloud reading, searching for additional solutions" - announced the minister.
“We don't have a loan in Korea,” she assured. She stressed that the Polish government was "talking about already signed contracts" and assured that "financing for this part of the signed contracts is ensured".
Rzeczkowska also said that deliveries of military equipment to Poland "are already taking place". "A very important aspect of cooperation - whether we are talking about Korea or the United States - is to ensure such a package or investment solutions also in Poland, so that it is not just a purchase of equipment, but also an increase in Polish production capacity in terms of parts, armaments or ammunition. That's what these talks are about", she said.
Recently, Poland has ordered a number of different types of combat equipment from South Korea - K2 Black Panther tanks, K9 self-propelled howitzers, K239 Chunmoo rocket launchers, as well as FA-50 light aircraft. The Polish side plans to acquire a total of 1,000 K2 tanks and their Polonized K2PL version; the first tanks arrived in Poland at the end of last year. In addition, there are plans to acquire a total of 672 K9A1 self-propelled howitzers, also in the Polonized K9PL version.
Poland has also ordered 48 FA-50 light combat trainers from South Korea, which are also to be polonized (FA-50PL). As announced by the Ministry of National Defense, the delivery of the first 12 aircraft is scheduled for the second half of 2023, while the deliveries of the 36 FA-50PL are to start in 2025 and be completed within 2-3 years. This year, deliveries of the first 18 K239 Chunmoo launchers (related to the American HIMARS launchers) are also to be made, of which the Ministry of National Defense plans to acquire 288 in total.
If it is true that Poland has taken more loans to repay, it's scary to think what taxes Polish residents will have to pay after the government's crazy investments recently.