VDM aiming to prompt scrutiny of EU subsidies in Poland

03.07.2019 − 

In several talks with political decision-takers at the EU level in June and July, the association of the German furniture industry (VDM) wants to discuss subsidies for the Polish furniture industry paid from the EU Structural Funds. The aim of the talks is to examine the necessity of such subsidies in Poland, particularly when they are at the expense of furniture businesses in other EU countries and thereby distort competition. The Polish anti-corruption authority’s current suspicion of subsidy fraud by various companies in the furniture and woodworking machinery industry in Poland are all the more reason to raise political awareness on this issue. The EU financial framework for the new subsidy period of 2021 to 2027 is currently being revised.

The German furniture industry has been suffering under the pressure of imports from furniture suppliers from Poland for some considerable time. With an import volume of 3.4bn € in 2018 and a share of more than a quarter, Poland remains by far the most important supplier country for the German furniture market. Here, says VDM director Jan Kurth, the focus is on aggressively priced products in the container-furniture segment. According to Kurth, high production capacity has been built up in Poland in this segment in recent years. The Polish furniture industry, he says, is meanwhile a well-functioning industry with the latest production technology, which no longer requires structural funding from the EU Structural Funds.

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