Page last updated at 14:44 GMT, Tuesday, 28 October 2008

Poland may get referendum on euro

Euro notes
Poland has agreed to adopt the euro - but the question is when

The Polish government says it wants Poland to adopt the euro in 2012, but opposition to the plan - including from the president - may force a referendum.

The pro-EU government of Prime Minister Donald Tusk approved a roadmap for eurozone entry at a meeting on Tuesday.

But opposition Law and Justice (PiS) leader Jaroslaw Kaczynski and his twin brother, President Lech Kaczynski, favour a referendum on the euro.

Poland committed itself to adopting the euro under its 2004 EU entry terms.

Poland's constitution would have to be amended to enable its currency, the zloty, to be swapped for the euro.

Mr Tusk said eurozone membership would make Poland more secure in the long term.

But PiS opposition in parliament to the plan could force a referendum. The PiS believes switching to the euro could undermine Poland's strong growth and national sovereignty.

"If there is no other possibility and I need the opposition's support on this matter, we may have to decide to organise a referendum," Mr Tusk said, quoted by the AFP news agency.

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