The government expects the growth of coal production and will deal with the management of the mines that do not fulfill its instructions to channel 80% of the funds from the sale of coal to wages, Prime Minister of Ukraine Denys Shmyhal said.
"Ukraine today needs coal more than ever. In connection with such a price of gas, due to the shortage of coal, we, of course, are making every effort to ensure that Ukrainian mines extract it as much as possible. We really need it. With gratitude to miners, we expect an increase in production," Shmyhal said at a briefing during his working trip to Donetsk region.
"We expect that production will grow by 1.2 million tonnes and more. This is very important. This is what will ensure the passage of the heating season. For now, we are very confident that we will pass it," the prime minister added.
At the same time, he noted that in the current heating season, 14 out of 15 NPP power units are expected to work permanently, nevertheless, a lot of work is being done in relation to the provision of thermal generation with coal, since it plays the main role of maneuverability.
According to him, in this regard, along with the growth of its own production, great importance is attached to ensuring the import of coal.
"Coal generation is a maneuverable capacity. You can't go anywhere without it. In this regard, we work a lot with generating companies, which today are actively contracting and transporting coal - both by rail and by sea. All contracts where we can buy coal have been completed," the prime minister said.
Asked about the prospects of paying off debts to employees of coal mining enterprises, Shmyhal explained that this is a question for their management.