Poland has received offers for nuclear power projects from Korea Hydro & Nuclear Power Co. and Electricite de France SA, and is awaiting offers from U.S.-based Westinghouse Electric Co. An intergovernmental agreement signed by then-President Donald Trump’s administration sets out specific proposals.
After Polish Prime Minister Mateusz Morawiecki fired Piotr Naimski in July, the likelihood of other partners joining the $30 billion project has increased significantly. It is understood that Piotr Naimski is a former official in charge of energy security and a staunch supporter of cooperation with the United States.
Morawiecki traveled to Paris last week to discuss nuclear energy with French President Emmanuel Macron, and shortly after had a phone call with South Korean President Yoon Seok-wook. He also spoke with U.S. Vice President Harris on Sunday.
“Among the bidders, cooperation with the U.S. on the nuclear program is certainly constructive, and that’s something I have discussed specifically with Vice President Harris,” Morawiecki said at a news conference on Monday. It was also discussed with President Macron in Paris, and I hope these cooperations will be compatible. It is a unified concept, so the negotiations are not contradictory.”
reduce coal dependence
Poland believes that nuclear and offshore wind energy will help reduce the country’s reliance on coal resources, which currently generate 70% of Poland’s electricity production. The country plans to almost completely stop using coal by 2050, by which time nuclear and natural gas generators will provide most of the steady electricity supply. However, plans to build the first nuclear reactor by 2033 are already tight, and the new approach risks delaying that.
Polish Deputy Foreign Minister Pawel Jablonski said on Monday that the government could decide on a partner for the nuclear power technology in early 2023. Morawiecki also said that the Polish government may want to build larger nuclear capacity than the 9 gigawatts originally planned.
“We’re a big enough country that we don’t need to pick one technology for full application,” Pawel Jablonski said in an interview. “We don’t rule out working with more than one partner, or you can think we’re working with three partners at the same time.”