The transformation of the mining industry in Poland is an often discussed and controversial topic. As a result of continuing disagreements there have been numerous strikes by miners over many years. The European Union’s energy policy requirements have also created difficulties. On Thursday, 24 June, the President of the Polish Mining Group, Tomasz Rogala, and the Deputy Minister of State Assets, Artur Soboń, answered many burning questions concerning the future of mining in Poland. How does it all look like?
As Tomasz Rogala reports
The transformation of the mining industry is a long-term process, requiring significant financial outlays, the creation of a sufficient number of new jobs, and also requiring social acceptance – thus it takes time
The entire process has been spread out over nearly thirty years in order to have the opportunity for long-term consideration of the transition to new energy sources, the provision of social benefits, and the transformation of post-mining areas
A sustainable transition to other energy sources takes time. According to the PEP, most new sources are expected to appear in about 10-15 years – commented the President of PGG
30 years ago, the Polish energy sector was based on 96 percent coal, in 2004 – 92 percent, and in 2019 – about 77 percent. This means a reduction in the share of coal by 19 percentage points within 30 years.
Another issue is to provide jobs and appropriate salaries for people who have worked in the mining industry so far, and by closing the mines, may become unemployed.
This will not be an easy task, since the average gross monthly salary in the mining industry is about PLN 9 thousand. Creating suitable jobs for people who have worked in the mining industry for many years may be a very difficult task. There is talk of retraining miners for the automotive industry. According to calculations, jobs in the automotive sector could provide former miners with social security similar to the current one. It has been calculated that creating alternative jobs in the automotive sector would cost even PLN 350 billion.
According to Artur Soboń, on Thursday, 24 June, all parties reached an agreement and a social contract was concluded. The application has been submitted to the European Commission and the prenotification process has begun. The Commission’s approval is a condition for the agreement to enter into force
Unfortunately, little detail of this social agreement has been made public. So far we know that
Source: press materials
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