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Poland dismisses state road agency chief

By Christian Lowe WARSAW (Reuters) - Poland's government on Thursday dismissed the head of the state road agency, who had been at the center of disputes between Poland and international engineering firms over a European-backed road-building program. Many contractors allege that Lech Witecki's agency, known by its Polish acronym GDDKiA, had forced them to take heavy losses on contracts to build Polish motorways, and even drove some into bankruptcy. Witecki has denied the allegations.

Special Report: Poland's roads to ruin

By Christian Lowe and Dagmara Leszkowicz MSZANA, Poland (Reuters) - When Poland started handing out billions of euros worth of contracts for a wave of road-building five years ago, everyone was meant to benefit. Poland would bring its decrepit transport system into the 21st century, European construction firms would win contracts at a time of recession, and the European Union, whose cash helped fund the work, could point to how it was helping.

UPDATE 1-EU freezes 900 mln euros to Poland pending fraud probe

* Commission said hopes to unfreeze money soon * Poland has charged road contractors with price-fixing * Ministers say EU reaction too harsh (Adds details about charges in court case) By Adrian Krajewski WARSAW, Jan 30 (Reuters) - The European Union has frozen about 890 million euros ($1.20 billion) in aid earmarked for building Polish roads because of a suspected fraud by contractors, a Commission spokeswoman said on Wednesday.

EU freezes 900 mln euros to Poland pending fraud probe

* Commission said hopes to unfreeze money soon * Poland has charged road contractors with price-fixing * Ministers say EU reaction too harsh By Adrian Krajewski WARSAW, Jan 30 (Reuters) - The European Union has frozen about 890 million euros ($1.20 billion) in aid earmarked for building Polish roads because of a suspected fraud by contractors, a Commission spokeswoman said on Wednesday.
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