The government signed a deal with trade unionists on Saturday evening that is designed to save four coal mines from being liquidated, likewise the jobs of up to 5000 workers.
The deal came after days of tense talks against a backdrop of underground strikes at several Silesian mines owned by struggling state-owned firm Kompania Weglowa.
The majority of the company’s 14 mines will be taken over by a new state-owned company, while the four ear-marked for closure are in line to be merged with existing state-controlled energy firms.
”I am convinced that thanks to the determination of both sides [in the talks], we can tell over 47,000 miners who were employed by Kompania Weglowa that this stressful time is over,” said Prime Minister Ewa Kopacz.
According to Dominik Kolorz, head of a Silesian branch of the Solidarity trade union, investors for the four most endangered mines have already been found.
Although Kolorz said he was not at liberty to divulge names, it is understood that state-controlled energy giant Tauron Group is one of the prospective investors.
Kompania Weglowa has been recording vast losses in recent times, leading to the creation of a restructuring programme.
In mid-September the then-CEO of the company Miroslaw Taras stated that only three out of the firm’s 14 mines were profitable.
In the first half of 2014, the company recorded a net loss of PLN 342.7 million zloty (EUR 81.8 million) compared to PLN 228.7 million zloty (EUR 54.6 million) in losses a year earlier. (nh)
Picture: Prime Minister Ewa Kopacz and Dominik Kolorz, leader of a Silesian branch of the Solidarity trade union. Photo: PAP/ Andrzej Grygiel