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EC, as well as IMF, sends letter to Hungary

The European Commission is sending a letter of response to Hungary regarding an assessment made as part of negotiations on assistance it is seeking, EC spokesman Olivier Bailly said at a regular press briefing on Wednesday.

"We have finalized our assessment and we have prepared a letter for...Vice President [Olli] Rehn to send to his counterpart in the Hungarian government," Bailly said, answering a question about a letter of response Hungary received from the International Monetary Fund.

Hungary is seeking precautionary financial assistance from the IMF/EU.

Bailly said he could not confirm that the Commission sent its letter to Hungary on Wednesday, but added that "indeed the letter will be sent". He said he could not comment on the contents of the letter.

Parliamentary group leader of governing Fidesz Antal Rogán said on commercial television early Wednesday that the government had received a response to a letter sent to the International Monetary Fund in which the IMF has asked mainly for clarification.

Rogán said the IMF asked in its letter for clarification regarding several questions, such as the scale of fiscal improvement expected from some government measures. He added that the IMF also asked about the financial transactions duty, which is to be levied on the National Bank of Hungary (MNB) as well as commercial banks.

"We will respond to [these issues], and I think that afterward consultations between the Hungarian government and the IMF delegation will start again," he said.

Bailly said he had no information on when the IMF/EU delegation would next come to Budapest.