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MVM pays out record dividend

The annual general meeting of the state-owned Hungarian Electricity Works (MVM) decided to pay out a HUF 38.8 billion dividend, or all of 2008 profits and an additional HUF 5.2 billion from profit reserves, MVM told MTI on Friday.

The dividend is the biggest ever paid by MVM. MVM paid a HUF 1.0 billion dividend on 2007 profits, placing HUF 35.4 billion into profit reserves.

MVM had consolidated after-tax profit of HUF 39.7 billion on revenue of HUF 721.2 billion in 2008, the P+L statement approved by the owner shows. The company had consolidated total assets of HUF 785.2 billion at the end of the year.

MVM said work on a 400MW coal-fueled block at the Mátra Power Plant was on schedule. MVM said earlier the block, which it is building together with the power plant company, would cost HUF 200 billion. It is to be completed by 2015.

The cornerstone was laid just a few days earlier for the other big investment MVM is working on: a €70 million gas-turbine power plant it is building with Euroinvest, to be completed by 2010.

MVM said shareholders did not take a final decision on the future of the Vértesi Power Plant, but would continue to examine "the economic and social effects of possible solutions."

György Keleti, the MP that represents the area where the Vértesi Power Plant is based, said a decision on shutting down the plant was taken off the agenda of the AGM to work out the conditions under which the plant can continue to operate until the originally scheduled shutdown date in 2014. The plant's business plan for 2009 contains the layoff of 720 people and a HUF 6 billion capital raise, he added. The plant employs a total of 2,100 people.

The state asset manager, exercising the ownership rights over MVM said in the statement after the AGM that MVM would temporarily finance the Vértesi Power Plant by transferring assets within the group. (MTI-ECONEWS)