Coal sector in Poland, light in the tunnel or dimming candle?
The coal sector in Poland, especially mining, is a showcase of how a mix of technical, economic and political initiatives aimed at healing a decaying sector has worked or perhaps not worked. Coal mining was one of the sectors most affected by economic transformation in early 1990s. It was formerly privileged as provided primary energy for the economy and convertible currencies from export, but at the beggining of economy transformation turned into a number of overemployed and unprofitable companies. The result was a nearly continuous deficit but many governmental efforts to improve the situation were not leading to long term viability. This paper aims to discuss the history and prospects for the coal industry in Poland. Firstly, the past of coal mining in Poland is analysed to identify possible reasons for the lack of efficacy of the restructuring programs. Secondly, the present situation and future prospects are described. Conclusions point to the issues which are important in restructuring processes and factors determining the prospects of coal mining in Poland.
KeywordsCoal industry in Poland Restructuring Prospects
JEL classificationP28 P31 N74
The author wishes to thank Prof Marian Radetzki firstly for his contribution to the formation of effective restructuring programs for Polish coal mining, secondly, personally, for his approach and training of the author-researcher with, at that time, nearly no experience in market-based economics and finally for his friendly attitude.
The paper was supported by AGH grant no. 184.108.40.2065.
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