Two speak on re-nationalization of utilities

History

Lest anyone doubt the seriousness of Prime Minister Viktor Orbán’s remarks that moves would be made in privatizing a good number of utilities, further statements made today in local media hammer home the intention to turn back the clock on some companies...

Appearing on national television network M1 this morning, spokesman András Giró-Szász confirmed that his government is in fact “considering offers made by the owners of some utilities companies to sell their stakes.” Giró-Szász denied any link to Orbán’s comments, however, emphatically stating that “This is not about the nationalization or expropriation of utility companies.”

Giró-Szász explained that “The state is under no obligation to acquire utility companies” and would essentially take a greater role in the regulatory system in a model similar to those in France and Denmark. 

Meanwhile, much more point-blank was Budapest Mayor István Tarlós; in the daily newspaper Magyar Nemzet, Tarlós stated that “All of the public utility companies in Budapest privatized under former mayor Gábor Demszky will be returned to Hungarian ownership in coming years.”

Orbán had mentioned on Friday the government’s targeting of Budapest-based Főgáz.

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