The WSJ carries an insightful Q+A with the Polish central bank governor here.
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People have grown used to thinking of Poland as a country of emigrants — just ask the British, the Irish or the Germans. Yet more and more foreigners are now applying for Polish citizenship. Warsaw’s Rzeczpospolita daily reports.
When the South American billionaire and owner of the Colombian airline Avianca, German Efromovich, wanted to buy Portugal’s largest air carrier, TAP, he encountered a seemingly insurmountable problem: according to European law, non-EU investors could not buy more than 49 per cent of shares in a European airline. However, he quickly found a solution which he announced to an astonished audience of journalists at a press conference in Lisbon: “I’ve applied for Polish citizenship. I’m entitled to it because my parents were both Polish”. And indeed, a short time later on December 5, 2012, Mr Efromovich received his Polish passport.
[...] Yuri Gladir, who has played for the Kędzierzyn-Koźle volleyball team Zaksa for four years, may not be worth as much as Mr Efromovich, but he can certainly beat him to a smash at the net. Born in Poltava, Ukraine, Gladir, who lives in Poland with his wife, Marina, and his Polish-born daughter, Daria, has just received his Polish passport. Now his dream is to play for the Polish national team: “Playing with the white eagle on your chest is every volleyballer’s dream because Poland can compete with the best in the world”, explains Mr Gladir.
[...] Often, however, economic and family-related considerations are only part of the equation. For more and more would-be immigrants, Poland is a nice and attractive country to live in. When the multi-instrumentalist and co-founder of the cult band Maanam who is now a member of Drum Freaks, Milo Kurtis, tells us of his recent application for Polish citizenship, he highlights the importance of “the atmosphere and the friendly people” —
My aunt and uncle from Greece recently took a walk down Warsaw’s Royal Route and were amazed at the place. Poland should be promoting itself through culture. It has outstanding theatre and sports. It’s mainly these fields that make countries known in the world.
[… When does the moment arrive when an immigrant develops a predominantly Polish identity? Certainly not when they receive their Polish passport. Okil Khamidov, director of the popular TV series, Świat według Kiepskich, and a Tajik by birth, jokes that in his case it was when he started complaining for no reason. “Oh, I’m Polish”, he thought.