The Council of Ministers formally adopted the bill on shale gas in March but only now was it submitted to the Parliament. — This means that the long-awaited parliamentary stage of the legislative work on those regulations is finally beginning — says Piotr Wołejko, expert of the Employers of Poland.
Before the first reading of the bills, they will be reviewed by Legislative Office of the Sejm and perhaps also by the Bureau of Research. When their positions are issued bills will be sent to the committee that will examine them. It will take a few weeks. However, the first reading of the two bills is on the agenda of the Sejm session on 7th-9th May. Given the complexity of the issues and the long-May-weekend, it seems more probable that the first reading will take place at a the Sejm session on 28th-30th May.
The new rules should reassure investors, who will have certainty as to the legal and regulatory environment in which they will operate. So far they have been confronted with often contradictory statements and announcements. After a promising start the number of wells drilled decreased last year and some foreign companies withdrew from Poland. It is impossible to explore the potential of Polish shale gas resources without carrying out a number of exploration drillings.
It is expected that the parliamentary stage of work on the shale gas bills will be conducted in an atmosphere of dialogue and cooperation with the mining industry and social partners. It is worth noting that because the new Minister of the Environment was open to dialogue with entrepreneurs it was possible to clarify a number of problematic issues, which helped the Council of Ministers complete their work on the bills.
Piotr Wołejko, expert of the Employers of Poland