Being young and Polish has never been this lucrative.
A new law that comes into effect in Poland this week will scrap income tax for roughly 2 million young workers.
It’s an attempt by the government to stop the dramatic brain drain Poland has experienced since it joined the European Union 15 years ago.
Prime Minister Mateusz Morawiecki said the tax exemption will bring new opportunities for young people “so they match those available in the West.”
Poles under the age of 26 who earn less than 85,528 Polish zloty ($22,547) a year will be exempt from the country’s 18% income tax starting August 1. The allowance is generous, considering the average Polish salary stands at just below 60,000 zloty ($15,700) a year.
The government said 2 million people will qualify for the benefit.
When Poland and seven other central and Eastern European countries joined the European Union in 2004, its citizens gained the right to work across the bloc without the need for a work permit or visa.
When advocating for the new law in the parliament, Morawiecki said 1.7 million people left Poland in the past 15 years. “It’s as if the entire city of Warsaw left … it’s a gigantic loss,” he said.
“This must end, young people must stay in Poland,” Morawiecki added.