Altus Portfólió head protests MNB fine

MNB

Klára Dobrev, the managing director of Altus Portfólió, has protested against a fine imposed on the asset management firm by the National Bank of Hungary (MNB) in a statement sent to state news agency MTI on Tuesday, accusing the central bank of making a politically motivated decision.   

Ferenc Gyurcsány

Dobrev, the wife of former prime minister Ferenc Gyurcsány, who owns Altus Portfólió, said the fine was politically motivated and that the central bank is not independent.

On Monday, the MNB said it fined Altus Portfólió HUF 15 million for lending without a license. In a probe covering a period of two years, the central bank said it discovered the company had lent almost HUF 400 mln to both retail and corporate borrowers, in most cases with interest.

"[MNB Governor György] Matolcsy thinks itʼs a crime to lend oneʼs own money to some relatives going through a rough patch, to close friends, and to the Democratic Coalition, which is opposed to [Prime Minister Viktor] Orbán," said Dobrev in the statement. "On the other hand, it is an act of patriotism to save public funds in foundations and with it buy furniture and rugs at exorbitant prices, provide relatives with credit and deprive borrowers of FX loans," she added.

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