The new government wants to reach an agreement with the authorities of Elbląg and the local port regarding the deepening of the waterway. The previous government had a conflict with local government officials regarding the financing of the deepening.
The Vistula Spit Cut is one of the flagship projects of the previous government. He argued that thanks to this investment, Poland would gain a passage from the Vistula Lagoon to the Baltic Sea, independent of Russia. From autumn 2022, ships can sail on the Canal, but it is not completed – in order for larger vessels to use the Canal, it is necessary to deepen 900 meters of the waterway on the Vistula Lagoon.
Who will pay for the deepening of the waterway in the Elbląg port?
There was a dispute between the previous Ministry of State Assets and the Ministry of Infrastructure and the authorities of Elbląg over who should finance this investment. The local government argued that since the idea for the excavation came from the government, it should also shoulder this expense. The authorities in Warsaw had a different opinion.
Finally, the government agreed to provide the money, but on the condition that it take over a majority stake in the port. This was unacceptable to the government.
There was no money, the plans were stuck. With the change of government, there was an opportunity to establish the principles of financing the deepening of the waterway.
– I can say that the waterway that is to connect the Elbląg port with the Baltic Sea will be completed. In 2024, there is no intention to take this port away from Elbląg and it will be the Elbląg local government port – announced Jerzy Wcisła, senator of the Civic Coalition, at the beginning of the press conference in Elbląg.
The new government does not want shares in the port
On January 16, the first meeting of the Elbląg authorities with the Deputy Minister of Infrastructure, Arkadiusz Marchewka, took place. The statement explained that “the meeting was intended to develop a common solution to complete the deepening of the waterway.”
– I am glad that government representatives fully understand the needs of our city, and their intentions to complete the construction of the waterway through the Vistula Spit and deepen the waterway are consistent with ours. This bodes very well for the future. We are now starting talks and developing specific actions that will lead to the development of the Elbląg port – wrote Witold Wróblewski, mayor of Elbląg, on Facebook.
The mayor of Elbląg was relieved to hear that the government no longer insisted on taking over shares in the port. He added that “the preparation of a joint work schedule and the necessary documentation is beginning.”
The Ministry of State Assets sees the port in Elbląg as the fourth seaport in the country.
– It is to handle from 1.5 to 2 million tons of raw material. This port will make money on its own. The entire investment in deepening this track is 13.5 km. The Elbląg River is 2.7 to 3 m deep, and we want to deepen it to 5 m so that ships with a capacity of one thousand tons can sail through it, emphasized Zbigniew Ziejewski, Deputy Minister of State Assets, on Polish Radio Olsztyn.