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Hungary can use IMF funds for MOL purchase, says IMF

Hungary is free to spend its unused International Monetary Fund (IMF) foreign-currency funds to finance its purchase of a 21.2% stake in Hungarian oil and gas company MOL from Russian peer Surgutneftegas, IMF Hungarian representative Iryna Ivaschenko told Reuters on Wednesday.

"According to the government's press announcement, the government will use its FX deposits to finance the transaction. These deposits include the drawn but not used funds from the IMF-EU stand-by arrangement which expired last October," Iryna Ivaschenko said.

"And the government is free to use its FX deposits according to its priorities."

Hungary announced on Tuesday that it would purchase the stake from Surgutneftegas for €1.88 billion, financing the transaction using funds drawn on an earlier loan from the IMF.

The unused part of the loan is deposited with the National Bank of Hungary (MNB).