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Gov't raises gas price

Hungary will raise the price of natural gas for industrial users from August and increase costs for households, with plans to boost it further, Economy Minister János Kóka said today. The price will rise by 12.6% from Aug. 1, Kóka said at a press conference in Budapest today. He reiterated the price will increase by 30 percent for individual users at the same time and said the now-subsidized cost must near what the government pays for the fuel on the world market. Prime Minister Ferenc Gyurcsány's government is moving toward eliminating price subsidies in the energy, drug and public transport industries to help cut the European Union's largest budget deficit. “We have to move the price of natural gas toward world market prices in the next few years to keep the whole system sustainable,'' Kóka said. “If it would stay the way it is, that would create insoluble tension in the budget.''