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Mátra Power Plant applies for rail freight license

Mátra Power Plant Rt has applied for its own rail haulage license, because of fears fees charged by MÁV Cargo, the recently spun-off cargo unit of Hungarian railway company MÁV Zrt, will increase, Mátra Power Plant chairman József Valaska said on Thursday. Mátra Power Plant expects to receive the license in mid-March, Valaska said, adding the company already has locomotives and staff to run its own haulage activities, but would need to rent hoppers. The power plant relies on the Bükkábrány coal mine, 50 kilometers distant, for half of its fuel - about 4 million tons of lignite a year. Transporting the coal by rail hopper already costs an annual Ft 2 billion, or 5% of the plant's total costs, and any further increase could force the mine to shut down, endangering the power plant's future and that of its 500 employees as well, Valaska said. Valaska said Mátra Power Plant will only start running its own rail freight operation if freight fees rise dramatically.