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Government to raise pensions by 1%

The government will raise pensions by 1% from November, retroactive to January 2005, government spokesman András Batiz said yesterday. The increase, which comes on top of a 6.3% rise early this year, translates into additional budget expenditures of Ft 21 billion, Batiz said. Pensioners will also get an annual bonus in autumn, equivalent this year to three weeks of pension payments. There are about 3 million pensioners in Hungary. (MTI; MH 11, NG 2, Nv 3)