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Poland and Czechia to strengthen energy cooperation, following high-level meetings

Following a high-level ministerial meeting on Tuesday (23 May), Poland and the Czech Republic have agreed to continue cooperation in developing oil and gas infrastructure between the two countries.

“We got rid of our dependence on Russian gas and now we continue to cooperate on projects that will help the Czech Republic with securing alternative supplies and thus strengthen our energy security,” said Jozef Síkela, Minister of Industry and Trade, following Tuesday’s meeting with the Polish Deputy Prime Minister and Minister for State Assets, Jacek Sasin.

“The construction of the Stork gas pipeline is important to us II, which is to connect the gas systems of the Czech Republic and Poland. At the same time, it would connect us to Polish LNG [liquefied natural gas] terminals. Thanks to this, we would reduce the cost of gas transportation, which would be reflected in the price for households and companies,” Minister Síkela added.

In early 2022, Poland and Czechia signed an agreement to restart work on the construction of the Stork II pipeline (Polish-Czech gas interconnector) after previously being abandoned. Late last year, both sides jointly requested financing for the project from the European Commission. With a green light from the EU Commission, the pipeline could be operational by 2026, the Czech Industry and Trade Ministry said.

The ministers also discussed the development of nuclear energy. Both Czechia and Poland are planning to build new nuclear reactors, Minister Síkela said. “As I have already said several times, nuclear power should have equal conditions for its development as other low-carbon sources,” he highlighted.

Greater cooperation on the EU level

At a separate meeting in Poland on Tuesday, the Czech Minister of the Environment, Petr Hladík, met with the Polish Climate and Environment Minister, Anna Moskwa and Deputy Minister, Adam Guibourgé-Czetwertyński.

Both sides emphasised that the effective conclusion of the dispute over the Turów coal mine was very important, especially taking into account the current geopolitical situation and the need to ensure energy security. “On the occasion of our first meeting, I emphasise that the agreement is being implemented without any obstacles and the contacts between the parties can be considered exemplary. I would like to thank the Minister and the entire team of the Czech side for the effort they put into the efficient implementation of the agreement,” Minister Moskwa said.

“Both parties fulfil their obligations provided in the agreement. The cooperation is very good. Thanks to the good cooperation of the teams on the Czech and Polish sides, further implementation of the agreement will run equally smoothly,” emphasised Minister Hladík.

Both parties agreed that the proposals of legislative changes presented by the European Commission require extended discussion and should be adapted to the conditions and possibilities in individual EU Member States. 

Discussing legislative proposals from the European Commission, the Polish side said that the proposals on the restoration of natural resources (NRL) require a deeper analysis because, in their current form, these proposals are “harmful” to nature conservation and may have an “opposite effect” from the intended one. During the meeting, the Czech side supported Poland’s position and confirmed that it was first necessary to clarify what the source of financing for the new activities would be. 

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