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Mar 29, 2023
Polish MPC Member Accuses Central Bank of Muzzling Policymakers
(Bloomberg) -- A member of Poland’s Monetary Policy Council described a new central bank plan to regulate investor meetings as an attempt to restrict her right to communicate with market participants.
The 11-point list of good practices seen by Bloomberg and presented to the MPC at a meeting this month would require officials to seek the governor’s permission to meet investors. Any meeting would also have to be attended by another council member agreed with Governor Adam Glapinski.
The accusation comes months after rate setter Joanna Tyrowicz and two other officials — Ludwik Kotecki and Przemyslaw Litwiniuk — complained about the central bank’s management practices under Glapinski and called for more interest-rate increases to tame inflation.
“The draft rules of the MPC on meetings with investors effectively muzzle policymakers,” Tyrowicz told Bloomberg on Wednesday. “There are no legal grounds for the governor to single-handedly decide with whom an MPC member is allowed to meet or not.”
The central bank rejected what it described in a statement as a “scandalous political attack” and referred to practices by the US Federal Reserve that regulate board members’ external contacts. When phoned by Bloomberg, the bank’s press office said it had no immediate comment.
In Poland, MPC members are responsible for setting interest rates. But in contrast to some of their colleagues in other rate-setting boards, they enjoy broad autonomy in their public comments and appearances at events as they aren’t employed by the central bank.
In an interview with TVN24 television on Wednesday, Kotecki described the proposed regulation as “excessive and harmful,” but predicted the council will adopt it at a meeting next week.
Most of the 10-person council was appointed by the president and the lower chamber of parliament, which is controlled by the nationalist Law & Justice Party, of which Glapinski is an ally. Tyrowicz, Kotecki and Litwiniuk were picked by the Senate, where the opposition has a majority.
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