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Public Papers - 1991 - September

Statement by Press Secretary Fitzwater on the President's Meeting With Prime Minister Jan Krzysztof Bielecki of Poland


President Bush was very pleased to welcome Prime Minister Bielecki of Poland to the White House. The Prime Minister and President Walesa deserve great credit for reforming the Polish economy and building Polish democracy.

Poland is leading the way with a radical economic transformation, and it is working. The private sector is growing dramatically. Exports are on the rise. American investors are giving Poland a vote of confidence. Enormous difficulties remain: the legacy of the inefficient Communist system, the collapse of the Soviet market, and others, but President Bush assured the Prime Minister that the United States stands with Poland as it moves toward economic recovery.

In discussing the revolutionary changes in the Soviet Union, President Bush also assured the Prime Minister that Western support for reform there will not be at the expense of Poland or the other new democracies. In fact, having gone far down the road toward a free economic system, Poland should now have a role in supporting the expansion of democracy and markets farther east. President Bush therefore proposed that our Governments explore ways for Poland to participate in efforts to assist the Soviet Union and the Baltic States.

The United States is also opening its markets to Polish products and will soon be negotiating more liberal trade agreements with Poland, Hungary, and Czechoslovakia. We hope the European Community will also move quickly to open its markets. Additionally, we are increasing our support for Poland's private sector. The Polish-American Enterprise Fund has now committed more than 0 million for new ventures. And President Bush was pleased to announce a new housing loan guarantee program for the region, with the majority going to assist Poland in developing a private housing sector.

At this time of historic change in the Soviet Union and the Baltic States, Poland's success is all the more important to us. As President Bush told Prime Minister Bielecki, the United States attaches great importance to Poland's security and independence and to the new U.S.-Polish partnership.

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