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Central bank to sell stake in interbank settlement house(

The National Bank of Hungary (MNB) has started a public procurement procedure for an advisor to appraise its 7.3% stake in interbank settlement house GIRO in preparation for a sale, the central bank said.

The MNB wants to remain a long-term owner only in such companies that contribute to or are indispensable to its basic tasks as a central bank, the MNB said. As the MNB is responsible for the secure operation of payment and securities settlement systems, it can affect interbank settlement without holding a stake in GIRO, it said.

GIRO has 27 shareholders, including eleven Hungarian banks, the central depository and clearing house Keler and the MNB.

 GIRO has shareholders' equity of HUF 5bn. Giro typically serves for the clearing of small-value large volume interbank transactions. Its interbank clearing system BKR handled 241.2 million transfers worth HUF 63,482 billion in last year. It managed 99.5% share of all transactions and its share was just less than 6pc in value-term turnover.

The MNB aims to sell the stake at the best possible price. In line with the Central Bank Act, the MNB will pay any eventual profit on the transaction to the central budget. (MTI – Econews)