Poland's top politicians meeting over government future


Though Szydlo's government is riding high in opinion polls, ruling Law and Justice head Jaroslaw Kaczynski is thought to be advocating a change.

PiS party spokeswoman said on Tuesday that it was not a secret that the candidacy of Finance Minister Mateusz Morawiecki to become the new prime minister has emerged, but she said no decisions have been made yet.

The future of Poland's Prime Minister Beata Szydlo hung in the balance Thursday as top political leaders considered a government reshuffle that could see her replaced.

Earlier Thursday, Szydlo and her Cabinet easily survived a no-confidence vote in parliament that was called by the opposition.

Swiss train maker Stadler has won a tender and will supply 71 trains worth 2.2 billion zlotys ($615.38 million) to Polish rail operator Koleje Mazowieckie.

Kaczynski himself is another name being tossed around, including by the leader of the liberal Civic Platform (PO), the main opposition party.

Szydło said in a media interview on Wednesday that next year Poland's ruling conservatives planned to focus on policies to further improve the economy and ensure even faster growth to consolidate the country's "historically lowest unemployment, the best results in terms of economic growth in six years, and the best results in terms of public finances".

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So far, the popular PiS government has introduced a child allowance, lowered the retirement age and increased wages, among other measures. Joblessness sank to 6.6% in October.

"The last two years - it was an extraordinary time for me and the service to Poland and Poles was an honour", Szydło said on Twitter.

Mazurek added that it would be for Morawiecki to decide what post Szydło would now be offered.

He had joined the bank in 1998 after studying history, business administration, European law and economic integration, and management in Poland, Germany, Switzerland and the US.

The PiS government's overhaul of the judicial system has led to mass street protests and prompted Polish freedom icon Lech Walesa to express concern about his country's fate in Europe.

Szydlo's government insisted that the reforms are needed to root out corruption and purge a judiciary it believes is stacked in favour of supporters of former prime minister Donald Tusk, who is now president of the European Council.