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MÁV losses narrow in 2010

Hungarian state railways MÁV booked unconsolidated losses of HUF 35.8 billion in 2010, almost HUF 2 billion less than planned and well under the HUF 54 billion loss in 2009, CFO György Petrilla told journalists on Wednesday.

Unconsolidated revenue fell 5.3% to HUF 170 billion in 2010. Operating losses dropped to HUF 26.7 billion from HUF 40.7 billion.

MÁV used 39% of its HUF 222 billion stock of loans to cover operating costs last year, down from 61.1% in 2006, Petrilla said., he added.

MÁV has no approved budget for 2011 because events are expected that will have a significant effect, such as the consolidation of the company's loans and other changes affecting public transport in general, he said. If MÁV gets the budget support it is due, this year's numbers could be better than last year's, he added.

Asked about higher fares, Petrilla said MÁV wanted to attract as many travelers as possible by improving service quality. "Price increases are not the way" he added.