“The priority for Poland is research into and production of hydrocarbons. On the other hand, a final decision regarding the nuclear power program will be taken no sooner than 2014-2015,” stated Treasury Minister Michał Budzanowski at the Sejm on Wednesday.
The same message was heard from Krzysztof Kilian, CEO of Polska Grupa Energetyczna (PGE), which is responsible for the construction of Poland’s first nuclear power plant. PGE is also an active participant of the consortium preparing the research of potential deposits and the future production of shale gas in the country. Up until now, both the government and businesses involved had declared that both projects would run concurrently.
Why the change of heart? A statement provided by Mr Budzanowski for the Polish Press Agency that “investments launched today in the energy sector in Poland may lead to a situation in which Poland will have an energy surplus by 2020,” provides some explanation.
Analysts mention yet another argument that may shelve the nuclear plant program – the price tag. Its construction would cost around zł.50 billion, while the development of shale gas production yet another zł.50 billion. The joint expenditure at the same time could exceed the financial possibilities of even the top players in the Polish energy sector.
From Warsaw Business Journal
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