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Court rules airport tender invalid, FinMin plans appeal

Budapest's Labor Court has ruled that the privatization tender for a 75% minus one vote stake in Budapest Airport Rt is invalid, Zoltán Kovács, head of the workers' council at the airport told Reuters on Wednesday. The workers' council had asked the court to halt the sale, citing a lack of consultation with employees. Appeals against the decision can be made within 15 days and the Finance Ministry said the ruling would be appealed. "We think that this will in no way influence the privatization process," ministry spokesman Ferenc Pichler said. Bidders for the second round of the airport tender are Germany's Hochtief (reported to have made the highest bid at Ft 390 billion), Frankfurt Airport operator Fraport, Britain's BAA, Denmark's Copenhagen Airports and Australia's Macquarie Airports Holdings. The government wants to complete the sale by the end of the year.