July 29, 2015 / 6:36 AM / 4 years ago

Poland back in talks with power firms on direct help for miner KW-report

WARSAW, July 29 (Reuters) - Poland is again trying to persuade power firms to take direct stakes in troubled coal company Kompania Weglowa as launching a fund to help the miner would take too long, Rzeczpospolita daily said on Wednesday.

The Polish government is working hard to keep the European Union’s biggest coal miner alive as its bankruptcy would leave thousands of potential voters without jobs ahead of a general election in October.

The latest idea was to create a special investment fund, with about 6 billion zlotys ($1.6 billion) in assets, which would become a shareholder in KW after receiving money from some state-run firms.

But since raising funds would take too long the government is trying to convince the country’s biggest power producer PGE and its smaller rival Energa, as well as gas distributor PGNiG, to buy KW shares directly, the paper said.

Rzeczpospolita daily said the government’s plan now is for the fund to inject 800 million zlotys into Kompania Weglowa with an additional 200-300 million zlotys each from the companies. It said this was the total amount KW needs to survive.

PGE, Energa and PGNiG declined to comment, the newspaper said. ($1 = 3.7315 zlotys) (Reporting by Agnieszka Barteczko; editing by David Clarke)

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