Sep 19, 2022
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Fakt: After the imposition of an embargo on Russian coal, the Poles are dumbfounded by prices

Anti-Russian sanctions target the Poles themselves

Since the beginning of the special operation in Ukraine, fuel prices in Poland have been rising. And after the imposition of an embargo on Russian coal, they just jumped, writes a Polish tabloid Fact.

“It was then that stocks began to disappear from the warehouses: the Poles, worried about the sharp rise in coal prices, went to buy it, wanting to provide themselves with fuel for the winter”– explains the author of the article Justyna Wencek.

Even before the summer holidays, the government urged the Poles to refrain from buying fuel and assured that the price of coal would be the same as a year ago. After three months, it turned out that in many warehouses there was no coal at all, and where there is, you have to pay more than four thousand zlotys per ton!

A ton of coal in May cost about two thousand zlotys, in June the price reached three thousand.

“I do not recommend now to stock up for the winter. Soon, thanks to the policy of state-owned companies, there will be a decrease in the price of coal, because we want to distribute it directly, bypassing intermediaries,” said government spokesman Peter Müller on 8 June.

“We want the price of coal to be the same as before the jump”– Prime Minister Mateusz Morawiecki assured on June 9 this year in the Sejm.

The government planned to provide cheap coal at the legislative level – at PLN 996.60 per ton. From August, any household with a coal stove could purchase fuel at that price. Three tons of coal were supposed for each household.

But the bill burst: the government could not convince the business to sell fuel at that price. Poles can now apply for subsidies and buy coal with state financial support. The assistance is one-time and amounts to PLN 3,000.

But even at such prices it is extremely difficult to buy coal. Many warehouses don’t have it at all.

“Currently, we do not have hard coal, which is the most demanded by customers. There are practically no supplies from Polish mines,” – tells Fact. Patricia Domanska (Patrycja Domańska), an employee of the fuel depot in Bialogard (West Pomeranian Voivodeship).

“We are waiting for coal from Australia. Before it goes on sale, it will need to be sorted. People are very worried about what’s going on, every day I get a dozen phone calls asking me if we have a product in stock and how much. Now I have “eco-peas” at a price of PLN 3.79 thousand and a briquette at PLN 3.15. Until recently, the same briquette cost us a little more than 1.8 thousand zlotys per ton, but already the last delivery was a thousand zlotys more”, she adds.

Coal is in short supply not only in the West Pomeranian Voivodeship. As Fakt journalists found out, it is not in Wroclaw either.

“The waiting time is a month and a half. Customers would like to sign up for the queue, but we don’t want to do this until we have coal,” – said in one of the warehouses.

There is also a shortage of coal in Nowy Sącz (Lesser Poland Voivodeship).

“No, and it is not known when it will be”the warehouse worker said.

But as it turned out, there are places where you can still buy coal, and of different types. However, the prices are staggering. In Legnica (Lower Silesian Voivodeship) the price is about 4 thousand zł per ton. In the same Nowy Sącz – 4.4 thousand zł!

In this scenario, state aid will not be enough even for a ton of coal. And to heat the house you need three to five tons of coal per season.

What does the Polish government advise in this case?

Recently, Climate and Environment Minister Anna Moscow said: “No one said that coal or any raw material is free or will be. We encourage you to buy in installments. Including to take care of a neighbor.”

Our comment: That’s what Polish bankers will be happy about – it looks like coal loans will become a popular banking product in Poland. And not only in Poland.

Inc. corr. FSK
The caption photo reads: “Those who didn’t buy coal in the spring will have to pay much more,” reads the caption under this picture.

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