The ability of the banking sector to finance the economy and its challenges

There is a great civilization program to be implemented by 2050, called the Green Deal in Europe. In the meantime, we also have many other economic tasks to achieve in Poland, including eliminating the effects of both the coronavirus pandemic and the current recession and the derivatives of the ongoing war in Ukraine. In Poland, getting on the path to the Green Deal is particularly difficult. First of all, approximately ¾ of the energy produced in our country comes from burning coal in power plants that are usually already heavily exploited. Secondly, approximately PLN 60 billion accumulated in Poland over the last few years from the sale of CO2 emission allowances, intended mainly for energy transformation, was never used by the government for this purpose, but was effectively wasted! Thirdly, also for political reasons, there is no indication that financial resources for climate and post-pandemic reconstruction purposes under the National Recovery Plan will be quickly available. For now, banks in Poland are increasingly signaling the fact that they are reducing lending to both coal and lignite extraction, as well as producers of electricity and heat produced from these fossil fuels. However, the demand for green loans is growing. Here we come to the role of the financial sector, including banking, but also other alternative sources of financing, in the economic reality created by the implementation of the Green Deal and many current needs. And it is banks, insurance companies and funds, as lenders, who will first obtain, and then grant, control and settle financial resources, both public, e.g. from the EU, but also from private investors, dedicated to companies from other economic sectors implementing the goals of the Green Deal. These types of tasks imposed on the financial sector, banks and insurers force and will accelerate the preparation of these companies for new obligations. New competences, new specialists and new low-emission but effective technologies are and will be even more needed. However, it is worth remembering that the profitability of the Polish financial sector has not been very high in recent years, which limits its ability to finance new investments and slows down its own transformation and development. There remains hope that bankers and financiers who usually have their feet on the ground will not deviate from economic and climatic realities and will find ways to raise funds to make the necessary investments and, consequently, achieve the expected material and social goals within the planned dates.