The Rising Cost of Living in Poland
In March 2011, Jarosław Kaczyński, the leader of Prawo i Sprawiedliwość (PiS), went shopping with Beata Szydło, the current Prime Minister of Poland. They bought a few items and paid in cash, all while the Civic Platform and Polish People’s Party coalition was in power. Kaczyński wanted to highlight the high prices that were burdening the Polish people. He explained that they chose a convenient store near the neighborhood for their shopping. However, he faced criticism for selecting an expensive place. The total amount on Kaczyński’s receipt was over 55 PLN. We found the same store and compared the cost of those same items after 12 years. The result was surprising.
Leader of PiS bought two kilograms of sugar, eggs, bread, a kilogram of apples, and 2.5 kilograms of potatoes. These items cost a total of 55.60 PLN. Today, you would need to spend 73.40 PLN for the same shopping list. The conclusion is that „Kaczyński’s Basket” has increased in price by 32%, which is higher than the official inflation rate.
It is worth comparing these prices to the level of benefits. While the cost of „Kaczyński’s Basket” has increased by 32% since 2011, the gross amount of pensions has risen by 118%. A retiree with the minimum pension could afford 13 such baskets, as purchased by the PiS leader. Currently, the pension is sufficient for 21 sets.
For a Polish worker earning the minimum wage in 2011, it was possible to buy almost 25 „Kaczyński’s Baskets”. However, with the current minimum gross salary, one can only purchase 49 of these baskets.
The rising cost of living in Poland is a concerning issue for many citizens. The prices of everyday goods have increased significantly over the past decade, while wages and benefits have not risen at the same rate. This has resulted in a greater strain on the budgets of Polish households, particularly for those with lower incomes. It is important for policymakers to address these challenges and implement solutions that can help alleviate the financial burden faced by the population.
– Prawo i Sprawiedliwość (PiS): A conservative political party in Poland.
– Civic Platform (PO) and Polish People’s Party (PSL): A coalition government in Poland.
– Gross salary: The total salary before any deductions.
– Minimum pension: The lowest amount of pension granted to retirees.
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