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EMFESZ targets revenue of HUF 220 billion in 2009

  EMFESZ, the biggest player on Hungary’s deregulated gas market, targets revenue of HUF 220 billion in 2009, up from HUF 215 billion in 2008, CEO István Góczi said on Friday.

EMFESZ has signed several thousand contracts to supply households with gas. EMFESZ started offering gas to households last year, after the retail gas market was deregulated. It also has contracts to supply about 40 local councils with gas and is in talks on supplying a further 200.

EMFESZ will wait until all of the relevant regulations are published before deciding whether to apply for a permit to operate as a so-called universal service provider to households or small consumers after the market is completely deregulated on July 1, 2009, Góczi said. EMFESZ is likely to apply for a permit in just one area, if it does, he added.

EMFESZ has obtained an environmental permit to built a 2,400MW capacity power plant in Nyirtas (northeast Hungary) and it is in talks with the European Investment Bank on financing the investment, Góczi said.

OTP Bank will lead a consortium of banks that will participate in the financing, he added. Talks are also underway on involving some of EMFESZ’s peers as minority owners in the plant, Góczi said, declining to reveal any names.

EMFESZ announced a few days earlier that it would spend $20 million on unconventional exploration in Poland this year and production could start within weeks. It is spending $8-9 million on exploration in Ukraine.

EMFESZ is also active on Hungary’s electricity market and is participating in a project to renovate a 750kV power line that affects Ukraine, Romania and Moldavia. EMFESZ is part of Group DF, owned by Ukrainian businessman Dmitry Firtash. (MTI-Econews)