WARSAW, July 22 The European Investment Bank has granted a 295 million zlotys ($95.98 million) loan to Tauron Polska Energia to help Poland's No.2 energy producer develop its distribution network and invest in renewable energy, the EIB said on Tuesday.
"We ...welcome this agreement with Tauron, as the project will ensure a secure supply to new customers through the expansion of the company's electricity network and the roll-out of a smart metering pilot programme," the European Union's bank said in a statement.
It marks the fourth EIB loan for made available to Tauron totalling 1.7 billion zlotys ($553.4 million) to support investments including the construction of a biomass-fired power unit at the Jaworzno III power plant.
Poland produces about 90 percent of its electricity from coal and heavy investment is required to cut its greenhouse gas emissions to meet European Union requirements.
The country's four largest state-controlled energy producers plan to invest 120 billion zlotys by 2021.
Warsaw also wants to improve its energy security, as imports from Russia cover nearly two-thirds of Poland's annual gas consumption. Russia also supplies over 90 percent of the oil Poland needs every year.
($1 = 3.0720 Polish Zlotys) (Reporting by Marcin Goclowski and Anna Koper; editing by Jason Neely)