Poland seeks to push unnamed company into rescue of miner KHW

By bne IntelliNews July 25, 2016

Ailing state-owned miner KHW needs recapitalisation of PLN700mn (€160.5mn) in order to stay afloat, more than twice the amount originally planned, Poland's deputy energy minister said on July 25.

The government hopes to persuade yet another state-controlled firm to step in to help the rescue effort, on top of Weglokoks and Enea, the official added. A bevy of listed state-controlled companies have been pushed into a sector-wide bid to save Polish coal mining, which is teetering on the brink due to weak markets and inefficiency.

The country’s largest miner Kompania Weglowa has been transformed into PGG, while JSW is also scrambling for survival. KHW is the third largest Polish miner, but the government has now discovered the rescue will be much costlier than expected, Deputy Energy Minister Grzegorz Tobiszowski admitted to Gazeta Prawna.

“It has turned out KHW needs not PLN300mn but PLN700mn in new capital. Also, we thought [state-owned coal exporter] Weglokoks would lead the [rescue effort], but its financial situation allows it to bring in only PLN150mn, instead of PLN300mn,” Tobiszowski said.

The minister added the state-controlled power utility Enea would also be involved in helping KHW, but since it has also been made to invest in PGG, the government is currently looking for third company to step in.

“It will be a company controlled by the treasury, but it will not come from the energy sector,” Tobiszowski said. He did not name the company. Major industrial companies outside energy that are controlled by Warsaw include metals miner KGHM and chemicals group Azoty.





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