The crisis caused by the coronavirus pandemic has prompted governments and central banks to take unorthodox measures aimed at protecting the standard of living of people and sustaining the production and service activities of companies. The policy of aggressively increasing the supply of money has entailed a significant rise in the budget deficit and public debt. It is important to consider the extent of its impact on the escalation of inflation processes and to formulate suggestions regarding the economic policy. Inflation is already higher than the official indicators show it, because it is partly suppressed. The increase in the general price level does not fully reflect the actual inflation rate. We are dealing with shortageflation – the simultaneous occurrence of price inflation and repressed inflation accompanied by shortages. It is methodologically interesting to compare this current phenomenon, 3.0, with the suppression of inflation in the war economy, 1.0, and in the economies of state socialism, 2.0. Such comparisons highlight not only the similarities of these processes but also the differences resulting from the specificity of responses of households and businesses. This paper discusses five channels of unloading excessive savings, indicating the most beneficial ones from the point of view of sustainable economic development in the post-pandemic future. It is particularly important to prompt the conversion of compulsory savings into voluntary savings, and at the same time, to stimulate the transformation of the inflationary monetary reserves into the effective demand expanding the use of existing production capacities and investments creating new capacities.
In the era of irreversible globalisation, the worldwide economic and political rules of play must take into account of the growing importance of China. Rather than fight the country, one should pragmatically cooperate on solving the mounting global problems. Contemporarily, both China should adapt to the external world and the world itself should adapt to China. There is no possibility of imposing on it a model developed elsewhere, especially that these days liberal democracy is experiencing a systemic crisis in many countries. Neither is there a chance to impose the Chinese model on others, though it seems tempting to a country; it is not an exportable ‘commodity,’ but its elements may prove useful elsewhere. China is not aiming for global domination; instead, it is consistently integrating with the world to maintain its own development. The only reasonable way forward is thorough observation, mutual learning and pragmatic collaboration based on the non-orthodox economic thought.
Contemporary economic thought does not deal suitably with the tasks it faces. Neither does it provide a satisfactory explanation of the socio-economic reality, nor does it propose effective methods of solving the mounting problems, especially at the macroeconomic level, in the national economy, and in the mega-economic level, in the world economy. The beyond-GDP reality requires a beyond-GDP economic theory on which a triple balanced – economically, socially and ecologically – beyond-GDP development strategy must be based. It is necessary to formulate anew the goal of economic activity, which cannot be a simple maximization of profit and a quantitative increase in production. The short-term interests of private capital should be subordinated to the long-term public interests, which is to be fostered by appropriate reinstitutionalization of the market economy. The economics has to be more oriented towards addressing the future challenges, and not mainly be inspired by conclusions drawn from observations of past events, which is often of little use in economic policy and development strategy. The new pragmatism is needed.
To join the Eurozone (EZ), a candidate country has to fulfil five nominal Maastricht convergence criteria and ensure compliance of national legislation with the acquis communautaire. With this regard special difficulties pose the fiscal criterion relating to the maximum allowed budget deficit of 3 per cent of GDP. If it is not met, the European Commission launches the Excessive Deficit Procedure. Currently, such formula applies to France, Spain and the United Kingdom. Although the issue is not absolutely certain, one can assume that euro will weather the present difficulties and will come out stronger, though the economically unjustified Euro scepticism of some countries is not helping. It may be expected that in the 2020s the European Monetary Union will be joined by all countries that are still using their national currencies and that the EU will be extended to include new member states, enlarging the euro area further. In this article authors are discussing the issue whether Poland will join the EZ in the coming years, considering the challenges of meeting all Maastricht criteria, on the one hand, and the reluctance of the government to give up the national currency, on the other. A mixed method combining the results of qualitative and quantitative research has been used to empirically verify the research question presented.