Rogán: Utility price cuts in ’14 start with natural gas

History

Those “nice little cuts” to utility prices that Prime Minister Viktor Orbán promised last week are indeed coming: According to Fidesz party parliamentary caucus leader Antal Rogán, new proposals for further decreases will be presented in April, with the reductions to be seen by year’s end.

Rogán informed local media on Friday that “Electricity, natural gas and district heating are the three areas where we will make proposals” for price decreases following two government-mandated cuts which reduced household utility prices by 20% in 2013. Rogán took aim at natural gas companies first, saying these prices would likely be the first to be lowered in ’14. 

Rogán also pushed the party line with regard to the banking sector, i.e. that the government seeks to become a majority owner in the sector; ditto the recent Paks nuclear power plant deal with Russian government-owned Rosatom, which he described as being of “vital interest to Hungary.”

Whether the Fidesz-KDNP coalition maintains its constitutional majority in parliament after the April general election -- and thus set more utility price cuts into law easily -- remains to be seen, but taking 50% of seats seems extremely likely, according to the most recent voter polls.

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