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Elimination of retail gas fee could reduce strategic reserve budget

A government decision scrapping a fee paid by retail gas consumers could reduce the budget of the country's strategic gas reserve by HUF 8 billion to around HUF 12 billion, Hungarian Hydrocarbon Stockpiling Association (MSzKSz) CEO Béla Bártfai said in Monday's issue of daily Népszabadság. Households are no longer required to pay the strategic reserve fee – net HUF 2.06, or gross HUF 2.60, per cubic metre of gas – from January. At present, there are about 800 million cubic metres of gas in a strategic gas reserve inaugurated in 2009 as part of a government initiative to increase the security of Hungary's energy supply. The strategic reserve, owned by MSzKSz and oil and gas company MOL, has capacity for 1.2 billion cubic metres.