Matolcsy: Central bank criticism ‘political bluffing’


Criticism aimed at the foundations of the National Bank of Hungary (MNB) with regards to its recently published finances amounts to “political bluffing” on the part of opposition parties and certain media players, MNB Governor György Matolcsy (pictured) said in an interview with Hungarian daily Magyar Nemzet published today.

Matolcsy was referring to “news reports that have put the National Bank of Hungary and its foundations, as well as the central bank governor, in a bad light”, and he has brushed off calls for his resignation, Hungarian news agency MTI reported. 

“Why should a well-functioning, legitimate central bank governor, who implements a successful monetary policy, and within this framework imparts about HUF 1 trillion to Hungarian society through the conversion of FX loans into forints, resign?” MTI cited the interview with Matolcsy.

Commenting on the spending of the central bank’s foundations, the governor said that “if the central bank can create the resources for repurchasing works of art taken from our country in a transparent manner, it can do that. This strengthens the national consciousness and adds to national wealth”, according to MTI.

Commenting on news reports suggesting that relatives to the governor could have been involved in offshore businesses, Matolcsy said “when I declared that nobody in my family had offshore interests, I was referring to my close family, that is, my wife, my two sons and myself. I have about 100 cousins in Hungary, and 300-400 around the world”.

Regarding news reports claiming that Matolcsy’s cousin Tamás Szemerey has affiliations with the publisher of news portal, which saw almost a dozen of its editorial staff resign after central bank financing of the portal was revealed, the governor said “my cousin has denied having any interests in the newspaperʼs publisher”.


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