The condition of Polish energy sector is terrible. Energy utilities are suffering drops in the stock market which can be attributed to Minister Tchórzewski’s attempts to centrally control the energy market to make construction of Ostrołęka C possible.
According to analysts from brokerage Dom Maklerski BDM SA, the climate surrounding state-owned utilities is terrible, the politically motivated pressure is no secret. Energy market on the stock is scrubbing the bottom - says Bankier.pl. State-owned utilities Energa, Enea, Tauron, PGE and even JSW are dropping. The situation of the sector is affected by the increase in price of CO2 allowances which makes coal industry clearly unprofitable. Four of these companies have one more thing in common: they are involved in Ostrołęka C.
Enea “is close to the bottom" and Energa's value has decreased by 35% since the beginning of the year. Shortly after voting for approval for the construction of Ostrołęka C, the share price of Energa has fallen by 5.5%- to the lowest since December 2016 - and is approaching historic low.
The shares of Jastrzębska Spółka Węglowa (JSW) dropped by 8%, to the lowest level since a year, after it had been announced that the coal mining company would spend ca. PLN 100 million on Polimex-Mostostal’s shares. After losing the tender for construction of Ostrołęka C, Polimex lost PLN 200 million in value. Although Polimex lost the tender, the company is going to be GE Power’s subcontractor for construction of the new power plant in Ostrołęka, which will in turn improve it’s not so good financial situation. The CEO of JSW refused not only to chip in for Ostrołeka C but also to use company's stabilization fund to pay for its construction which the Ministry for energy required from JSW. He also announced that the State Treasury (in practice the energy department that oversees the coal industry) is a shareholder unworthy trust. As a result the CEO is in danger of losing his position. The Prime Minister and Minister Tchórzewski received an emotional appeal from the JSW unionists. ‘For the love of God, be sensible!’ – they defend JSW’s CEO who refused to act to the detriment of the company.
PGE also loses on the Ostrołęka C project. The news that the FIZAN found (which belongs to PGE) was planning to pay PLN 1bn for Ostrołęka C was enough for 4,4% decline in the value of the company's shares despite PGE’s immediate statement that the money accumulated in the fund did not belong to the utility and that the contract was at an early stage of negotiations. Whose money is there in the fund then? It is not known, although Minister Tchórzewski would like to previse FIZAN with additional PLN 20 billion from ... pension funds of energy utilities.
Ostrołęka C still has no funding. The Polish Development Fund (PFR) and BGK bank did not decide to enter the project, not to mention foreign banks which have been openly severing ties with the coal sector. After a series of similar declarations of global reinsurance leaders the power plant's insurance is also in question. Polish state-owned banks are also reluctant to risk involvement with this project. PZU – Poland’s largest insurer - has been under heavy criticism of social organizations which demand that it withdrew from insuring Ostrołęka C.
By giving consent for the construction of a deeply unviable power plant, without any guarantee of financing or revenues from the capacity market, Enea and Energa act to their own detriment. Poland’s energy sector has now become a hostage of personal and very short-sighted interests. The only thing that matter is to start construction works before the local elections in October, the long-term perspective seems not to interest the Minister of Energy at all - comments Jakub Gogolewski, financial campaigner and individual shareholder of Energa and Enea.