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Polish shale at risk, trade group says

Nov. 14, 2012 at 7:58 AM

WARSAW, Poland, Nov. 14 (UPI) -- A Polish energy trade group said tax regulations proposed for the upstream industry may cause investors to shy away from potential gas reserves.

The Polish Exploration and Production Industry Organization said it was frustrated by proposals by the government to impose taxes on the energy industry.

Ukraine is among the Eastern European countries eyeing potential shale gas reserves along with Poland and Lithuania. The Polish government estimates it has as much as 3.3 trillion cubic feet of natural gas.

The trade group said it was looking to start a dialogue with the Polish government to advance oil and natural gas development while at the same time "accommodating a fair division of profits between industry and national treasury and local governments."

Marcin Zieba, general director of the industry group, said the tax proposals may be weighted too heavily against companies looking to take advantage of frontier natural resource developments.

"Investors are under the impression that someone is trying to reach deeply into their empty pockets when it is not even certain there will be anything there to take," he said in a statement.

Zieba said that if Poland aims to take advantage of its emerging shale industry, the government needs to embrace an attractive investment climate.

"Otherwise there is a risk of Polish unconventional gas projects not happening," he said.

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