December 19, 2017 / 11:21 AM / 10 months ago

Poland imports more coal to make up for lower output from miner PGG

KATOWICE, Poland, Dec 19 (Reuters) - Poland has imported more coal as output from the country’s biggest miner PGG is expected to be lower than expected at 30 million tonnes in 2017, senior officials said on Tuesday.

PGG, which accounts for about half of the amount of thermal coal produced in Poland, would miss its original 2017 output target of 32 million tonnes for “technical reasons”, PGG Chief Executive Tomasz Rogala told a news conference.

Without giving details of the technical issues, he told reporters that this year’s output was expected to be “slightly above 30 million tonnes.”

Poland has started importing coal from the United States to honour contracts with domestic and overseas buyers as state-controlled PGG has struggled to meet demand from major clients.

“The coal imports have increased, especially this quarter. But we will know the details in the coming weeks,” Deputy Energy Minister Grzegorz Tobiszowski told the news conference, without giving any figures.

PGG almost collapsed in 2016, but was bailed out by state-run utilities and a gas firm, which became its shareholders.

Reporting by Wojciech Zurawski; Writing by Agnieszka Barteczko; Editing by Edmund Blair

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