Prime Minister Beata Szydło signed on Tuesday documents related to the creation of Polish Mining Group (Polska Grupa Górnicza) in Katowice. Newly created group will take charge of the mines struggling with financial problems that once were part of Coal Company (Kompania Węglowa).
The ceremony preceding the transfer of mines to PGG was attended by the heads of both companies and the leadership of the Ministry of Energy. Leaders of trade unions, as well as representatives of banks and investors were also present. More than 1.5 billion PLN will be transfered to help struggling mines. Investors who intend to engage in helping are Polska Grupa Energetyczna, Energa oraz PGNiG Termika. Shareholder will also be Katowice’s company – Węglokoks.
With the acquisition of 11 mines and four plants, PGG will be the largest coal producer in the European Union. It is projected to have annual extraction of approx. 28 million tonnes. The Group’s business plan is to achieve profitability of coal mining at the end of next year. The restructuring plans include: increasing labor productivity, linking mines in a more efficient structure, as well as the transfer of redundant assets to the Restructuring Mines Company.
The creation of PGG was preceded by a social agreement, in which trade unions have agreed to suspend the annual bonus payments for two years which is called “fourteenth salary”. Basic salaries and other allowances, including “bonus barbówkowy” and coal allowance will be still maintained. It was required because the KW had debt reaching 8.5 billion PLN.
All existing labor regulations are to apply at least until the end of next year. Then trade unions and new management of PGG should negotiate a new collective agreement, which is going to simplify the rules of remuneration of miners and introduce new motivation options.
Polish Mining Group legally will start to exist on May 1st, it will employ 32,000 employees (100,000 if you count other around-mining companies) and it will be the largest mining company in the European Union.