Energy 19 September, 2023 7:35 am   
COMMENTS: Jacek Perzyński

Sasin: In matters concerning security the invisible hand of the market cannot have any say

Bogdanka_2 Mine corridor. Picture by Bogdanka

The head of the Ministry of State Assets (MAP) has pointed out that the government’s goal is to prepare the Polish mining industry to remain the foundation of the national energy sector for several decades, so that it can function despite the shocks caused by the market.

The 10th “Silesian Order” Conference organized on Monday in Mysłowice thanks to the initiative of MEP Izabela Kloc from Law and Justice and the EKR Group is titled “Order or chaos? Where is the world, Europe, Poland and Silesia going?”.

“In matters concerning security the invisible hand of the market cannot have any say,” State Assets Minister Jacek Sasin said at the conference.

Referring to the issue of security and energy independence, Minister Sasin assured that Poland was ready for the next winter. He reminded that since 70 percent of power is generated from coal, Polish mining plays a significant role. He noted that all of this has resulted from decisions made over the past decades, when mines were often shut down without a plan, which resulted in the need to import coal, also for the energy industry.

“Preserving coal and preserving the possibility of extracting the appropriate amount of coal in Poland guarantees Polish security – and we are working on this all the time, also with the management boards of coal companies, primarily from Polska Grupa Górnicza,” Jacek Sasin stressed.

“We are planning mining for the coming years, which will provide an adequate amount of raw material for burning in power plants. We’re building a whole idea right now on how to respond to the variables that keep hitting us, that we also have periods where there’s too much carbon. ( … ) There are periods when we are wondering where to store coal, which miners extract at least in PGG, but then there are also months when coal is missing,” he recalled.

“So, of course, we are building such a security system and it will function for several decades, because in order to build our energy independence based on other energy sources, we just need time,” he said. “That is why today we attach great importance to defending Polish coal against such actions as the methane directive, but also against, one might say, the economy,” the head of MAP explained.

“Today, with these very high climate taxes that are imposed on the production of energy from coal, I will theorize that our mining sector will not be able to sustain itself in the market. This is why we signed the social contract: it not only provides for workers’ security, but above all the whole system of public aid for the Polish mining industry, so that it can function without shocks, without looking at the market,” he explained.

It should be mentioned that in 2021 the government signed a social contract with the miners according to which the last coal mine will be closed in 2049. It provides an opportunity to introduce mechanisms for public assistance in the purchase of coal by the professional power industry and guarantees miners permanent jobs and a severance package of PLN 120,000 .

Polish Press Agency / Jacek Perzyński