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Hungary to retain some form of special taxation past 2012

In an interview covering special taxation, the National Bank of Hungary and the government's energy-expansion plans, János Lázár said the government plans to stick with special industry taxes beyond 2012 and strengthen the central bank

Hungary may retain some form of special taxation on energy, financial, telecommunication and retail companies after the current levies expire reported Bloomberg quoting said János Lázár, head of the ruling Fidesz party’s parliamentary group, who spoke in an interview in Budapest.

In terms of special industry taxes, which were imposed last year and expire at the end of 2012, Lázár said the extraordinary tax will be discontinued but the tax burden will not end altogether. It will simply be reduced.

“The industry tax is a temporary measure, but politically our aim is that in the future the tax burden shouldn’t be more or less than the European average for these industries. If the tax burden is more, then let’s reduce it. If it’s less, then let’s add to it," Bloomberg quoted Lázár as saying.

Lázár also covered plans on a new central bank law, which is due to be drafted by November at the latest.

“The law will strengthen the central bank’s independence, against the expectation that it will weaken it. In fact, we want to give the central bank more power. In cases where the central bank, as an independent institution, sees risks, it should have the tools not only to form an opinion but also to act, possibly to regulate, for example in the case of risks relating to foreign-currency lending," said Lázár.

“The ouster of the central bank president is not on the agenda,” he added