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Budapest, Alstom close to metro train deal, says mayor

Budapest public transport company BKV and France’s Alstom have come "exceptionally close" to finding a solution to the problems holding up the delivery of underground trains, Budapest mayor István Tarlós said after holding talks with Alstom head Patrick Kron in the Hungarian capital.

Tarlós told a news conference after the two-and-a-half-hour meeting that the negotiations were very constructive and conciliatory. "We have yet to formulate what we are able to agree on," Tarlós said.

Kron, chairman and chief executive of Alstom, said he would return to Budapest and conclude the talks in a few weeks' time. He said that it had become apparent that both sides wanted to find a pragmatic solution to the problems.

Earlier this month Budapest transport company BKV received bank guarantees in connection with underground trains ordered from the French company after French court ruled that BKV could call down bank guarantees the two had agreed on.