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Taxes expected to come up at IMF/EU negotiations, Varga says

Mainly questions concerning taxes are expected to come up for debate at negotiations with the International Monetary Fund, minister without portfolio Mihály Varga said in an interview on public television on Monday.

Varga, who is Hungary's chief negotiator for precautionary financial assistance the country is seeking from the IMF and the European Union, would not exclude the possibility that the questions of a real estate tax and a tax on assets could be brought up. He added that IMF delegations to Ukraine, Romania and Poland had earlier raised issues unexpectedly.

If the talks touch on the fundamentals of Hungarian economic policy, the delegations from the IMF and EU will be told that the Hungarian government is of a different opinion, he said. Hungary will come to the talks with openness, as promised earlier, and will see if compromises can be reached, he added.

He said the financial transactions duty was sure to be a subject of debate at the negotiations, but added that an agreement did not hinge on the issue.

Varga confirmed that delegations from the IMF and the EU would be in Budapest between July 17 and 25. Negotiations are expected to continue at the end of August, he added.