Gas independence in 3-4 years: PM

In three to four years, Poland will be fully independent from gas supplies from the East, Prime Minister Mateusz Morawiecki said in an interview with Polska Times daily, on Friday, referring to supplies from the former Soviet Union - Russia, Kazakhstan and Tajikistan.

Asked whether Polish-US cooperation will also develop in the area of energy, and whether the Americans can build a nuclear power plant in Poland, Mateusz Morawiecki said he saw a vast potential for cooperation in both nuclear and gas energy.

"We are focussing on supplies via Świnoujście,” said the Prime Minister, meaning the port on the Baltic where Poland's LNG terminal is located, and “the construction of a floating terminal in the Bay of Puck”, which is north of the coastal city of Gdańsk.

“We have shown that it is possible to build energy independence," Morawiecki said, pledging that in three-to-four years Poland will be fully independent from gas supplies from the East.

Poland 10-year gas supply agreement with Gazprom expires in 2022. The country’s strategy has been to diversify supplies, which led to the decision to build the LNG port in 2006, which was completed in 2016. It is now handling shipments from the US and Qatar.

The state-owned gas infrastructure operator, Gaz-System, expects the Świnoujscie LNG terminal’s expansion to be completed by the end of 2022. The works on expanding its capacity from 5 billion cubic meters to 7.5 billion are said to be on schedule.

Meanwhile, the pipeline linking Poland with Denmark and onwards to Norwegian gas field, known as the Baltic Pipe, is to be ready in 2022, according to Piotr Naimski, the official responsible for overseeing the project. He says that the whole pipeline system “right down to Przemyśl” in Poland’s southeast corner, will be ready by that time too, as all stages of the grid are being constructed simultaneously.

In addition, Poland has its own diminishing supplies of gas, which account for just over 22 percent its needs.