Insight – Transformation of Poland’s coal mining sector presents opportunities for Australian METS

Austrade

Australian METS organisations can offer solutions to assist the Polish coal sector, as it undertakes extensive modernisation.

Market and government drivers of change

Poland’s coal sector is currently facing significant challenges due to relatively high costs of production from its deep underground mines. Currently, the cost of production in many coal mines is in excess of global prices. Local production is being displaced by lower price imported coal.

The Polish Government’s policy for change in the sector is driven by the following objectives:

  • ensuring energy security of the country by satisfying the domestic demand for hard coal, including the use of coal for production of liquid and gaseous fuels
  • maintaining competitiveness of Polish hard coal in the free market economy
  • the use of modern technologies to improve price competitiveness, occupational safety, and environmental protection
  • create the basis for technological and scientific development, particularly in the Silesia and Małopolska region.

Areas of opportunity for Australian firms

Australian expertise is acknowledged and valued by local coal producers. Australian firms partnering with local companies can assist the local industry to improve:

  • operational efficiency
  • mine planning and deposit assessment
  • efficient coal-bed methane extraction, collection and utilisation
  • roof bolting (strata control) expertise, technologies and equipment
  • equipment and services to support automation and underground communication systems
  • improved drilling technologies, especially directional drilling and navigation capabilities
  • training in efficient, safe mining practices
  • personnel management, including individual worker/staff tracking systems, work cycle management and payroll systems
  • environmental remediation of closed mine sites.

Entering the market

Over the past two years, three of Poland’s major mining companies have purchased and implemented Australian-developed mining IT solutions. These cover every mining stage, from exploration to general operations, to help optimise mining operations.

Mine safety and safe mining practices training are a high priority and negotiations with two renowned Australian suppliers are underway.

Austrade Warsaw is ready to assist in introducing interested METS companies to the local major players, identifying a local partner or appointing a distributor.

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