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Kóka says: D.Telekom will not sell Magyar Telekom

Deutsche Telekom considers its Hungarian unit, Magyar Telekom, a strategic investment and will not sell its stake to Russia's Sistema, Hungary's Economy Minister János Kóka said.

„Deutsche Telekom will not sell its majority stake in its Hungarian subsidiary,” business daily Világgazdaság cited Kóka as telling parliament late on Monday after a phone conversation with Deutsche's management. Kóka said Deutsche explicitly ruled out such a move on the grounds that it considered Magyar Telekom, in which it holds 59.4%, a long-term, strategic investment that could serve as a regional hub for the parent company. His comments came after German media reported last month that Russian conglomerate Sistema and Deutsche were in talks over an asset swap deal in which Sistema would yield its stake in US-listed MTS for Deutsche's stake in Magyar. Magyar Telekom CEO Christopher Mattheisen earlier dismissed reports of a Russian takeover at the Hungarian telecom operator as pure speculation. The Hungarian government holds no stake in Magyar Telekom. (reuters.com)