A PYMNTS Company

Polish Antitrust Watchdog OKs Petroleum Firms Merger

 |  March 16, 2022

PKN Orlen, Poland’s biggest oil company, has been given the green light by the country’s competition watchdog, UOKiK, to merge with Polish gas monopolist PGNiG.

The consent depends on PKN Orlen getting rid of control over Gas Storage Poland, a PGNiG subsidiary, Orlen said in a Wednesday statement.

“The positive decision by the UOKiK president has been issued under the condition of waiving control over… Gas Storage Poland Sp. z o.o., a PGNiG subsidiary, whose main business is fulfilling the tasks of an operator of the natural gas storage system,” Orlen wrote.

The decision also carries an obligation to sign or keep an operator agreement with Gas Storage Poland after waiving control over the company.

The European Union had previously asked Poland’s regulator to investigate the merger over concerns of the possible effects on European energy markets.

PKN Orlen and PGNiG have been given 12 months from the merger to fulfil the condition.

Daniel Obajtek, Orlen’s CEO, said the merger “is yet another important step on the way to creating a single strong multi-energy conglomerate that will guarantee energy security not only for Poland, but for the whole region.”

The operation comes at a volatile time for oil, which recently reached highs of over $100 dollars a barrel following international sanctions on Russia, one of the world’s largest producers of oil and gas, over the country’s invasion of neighbor Ukraine.

Want more news? Subscribe to CPI’s free daily newsletter for more headlines and updates on antitrust developments around the world.