Gov't, unions seal social contract for mining

Andrzej Grygiel/PAP

Government and union delegates in Katowice, southern Poland on Friday sealed a social contract for the Polish mining sector as Poland enters an EU-imposed energy transformation procedure aimed at eliminating coal from the European energy mix.

Initialled by both sides on April 28, the contract lays down a road plan for the gradual close-down of the coal mining sector.

Among others, the document ensures public funds to finance severance and bridge instruments for laid-off miners as well as energy transformation aid for the southern Silesia region, where most of Poland's coal pits are located.

Under the plan, all energy coal mines in Poland are to shut down by 2049.

The contract still needs the European Commission's approval as it involves state aid.

In 2020, the share of coal in Poland's energy mix was down to 65 percent, falling below 70 percent for the first time in history.