Warsaw considers stake in shale gas

July 11, 2012 at 9:53 AM
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WARSAW, Poland, July 11 (UPI) -- The Polish government is examining legislation that would give the state a minority stake in shale natural gas concessions in the country, a minister said.

Deputy Environment Minister Piotr Wozniak said his government was considering legislation modeled after similar initiatives in the region that give the state "a stake in every concession," the Platts news service reports.

"When a state participates in concessions, it has direct access to all information and all the plans of the companies holding production licenses and it takes part in those," he was quoted as saying.

Polish media reports Tuesday suggested Warsaw was considering a 40 percent stake in shale natural gas licenses and a production tax of as much as 40 percent.

Warsaw estimates it has as much as 3.3 trillion cubic feet of natural gas, lower than the 187 trillion cubic feet estimated by the U.S. Energy Information Administration.

Officials, however, said shale gas analysis carried out in conjunction with the U.S. Geological Survey confirmed the country remains in a position to become a major energy producer and more drilling will likely reveal greater reserves.

State-controlled natural gas company PGNiG holds most of the shale concessions in the country.

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