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Poland may hold euro referendum in 2010-Deputy PM
09.18.08, 3:50 AM ET

WARSAW, Sept 18 (Reuters) - Poland may hold a referendum on euro adoption in 2010 together with presidential elections scheduled for that year to boost turnout, Deputy Prime Minister Grzegorz Schetyna said on Thursday.

'Together with the presidential elections, there would be a guarantee that turnout would be higher,' Schetyna told public radio.

'So when we are talking about a (euro) referendum, then I think 2010 would be the date.'

The presidential election in Poland, due every five years, attracts a higher turnout than parliamentary or regional polls. And for a referendum to be binding, turnout must reach at least 50 percent.

Poland's government surprised markets and opposition parties last week by saying it aimed to be ready for the single currency adoption in 2011, although the coins and banknotes would physically be introduced into circulation several months later.

Both the government and opposition parties have said a referendum on the euro could be held.

But the suggestion so far has been that such a vote should be organised sooner - during the 2009 regional elections, for example.

The referendum may prove to be the best option for the ruling centre-right Civic Platform because the party does not have two-thirds majority in the lower house of parliament to change the constitution.

The charter now says it is the sole right of the National Bank of Poland to print money and conduct monetary policy. If Poland swapped zlotys for euros, the European Central Bank would take over such tasks.

Poland is obliged to enter the euro zone at some point after it joined the European Union in 2004.

(Writing by Karolina Slowikowska) Keywords: POLAND EURO/REFERENDUM




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