Polish Briefing 13 March, 2019 9:00 am   
Editorial staff

Polish Briefing: Naimski discussed the nuclear in the US. Investigation on heating prices in Warsaw

What goes on in Poland on the 13th of March.

Minister Naimski discussed the nuclear in the US

Government Plenipotentiary for strategic energy infrastructure Piotr Naimski spoke to US Secretary of Energy Rick Perry, among others about the nuclear energy in Houston.

The CERAWeek conference in the capital of Texas organized by IHS Markit was the occasion. The topic of the talks was the continuation of the strategic energy dialogue launched in Poland in September 2018 by the presidents of both countries.

The press office of secretary Perry published photos from the conversation and informed that the specific issues raised during the meeting were cooperation in the nuclear sector, fossil fuels, energy infrastructure and cyber security.

Poland is considering the construction of nuclear power plants and wants to build an object with a capacity of 1-1,5 GW by 2033. However, the country is looking for a financial partner that could be the United States, as well as a technology partner. The American Westinghouse, for example, could be such a company.

UOKiK launches an investigation on heating prices in Warsaw

At the press conference, UOKiK announced that it is launching an administrative proceeding in the matter of collusion, which residents of Warsaw and the surrounding area could suffer because they can pay more for heating. This applies to Veolia Energia Polska, Veolia Energia Warsaw, PGNiG Termika and PGNiG.

In 2013, Veolia Energia Warszawa started construction of a heat and power plant in Warsaw’s Ursus district, and PGNiG Termika intensified its operations on the heat sales market to end consumers. The companies started a fight for customers, which could still grow after Veolia made the investment. However, this did not happen, because a year later the entrepreneurs established a cooperation which, according to the office, may violate the conference.

– The companies have jointly agreed that they will not compete with each other and focus on their core business, that is PGNiG Termika on heat generation, and Veolia Energia Warsaw on its sales – said Michał Holeksa, vice-president of UOKiK on the situation in 2014.

– As a result of the collusion, heat prices in Warsaw could have increased. It limited competition, it also made it difficult to improve the quality of services. We make accusations against the managers of these companies. The Warsaw heating market is the second largest in Europe, after Bucharest – he added.

– The case is also interesting because it is unprecedented. Usually, collusion is geographic in nature, this time we are dealing with collusion at the level of trading – said the director of the consumer protection department at UOKiK Wojciech Dorabialski.

The penalty amounts to 10 per cent of turnover for companies and 2 million for managers.