Poland will terminate gas supply contract with Russia - official

Poland will no longer need Russian gas supplies delivered by the Yamal pipeline next October owing to the start of deliveries of North Sea gas via the new Baltic Pipe.

The Yamal contract for natural gas, signed between Polish gas company PGNiG and Russian gas giant Gazprom on September 25, 1996, will soon expire.

"The Russian contract will expire next year (on December 31- PAP) and we will not extend it, of course," Piotr Naimski, the government's commissioner for strategic energy infrastructure, told a Catholic radio broadcaster on Monday.

He added that Poland "will certainly not become dependent on Russian supplies."

According to Naimski, "today everything indicates that as of October 1, next year, gas will be shipped to Poland via Baltic Pipe."

A Polish-Danish strategic gas infrastructure project, the pipeline will run along the Baltic seabed and will bring Norwegian gas to the Danish and Polish markets, and will help Poland diversify natural gas supplies.

In June, Denmark withdrew environmental permits for an overland stretch of the pipeline across Danish territory.

Denmark's decision was seen as the first major setback to Poland's plans of becoming fully independent of Russian gas supplies.

Naimski said on Monday that the delays, which were related to environmental issues and the protection of certain species of animals, had been resolved by the Danish partners.

"It seems that we can say... this investment will be completed next year, on time," he said referring to October 1, 2022, as the completion date.