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State to sell 1.7% Mol stake in domestic public offering

A spokesman for Hungary's State Privatisation and Holding Company (ÁPV) said on Thursday that the state would not automatically sell a 10% stake in Hungarian oil and gas company Mol in a public domestic sale if Mol declines to call its option on the stake.

However, the state will offer Hungarian retail investors its remaining 1.7% stake in Mol. Oravecz made the statement to correct reports on Wednesday that the 10% stake would be offered to Hungarian small investors if Mol decides it will not purchase it. The government decided in November of last year to offer the 10% stake -- the state holds altogether 11.7% of Mol -- to Mol in two packets over twelve months for a price determined by the shares' stock market price. Under the contract, Mol could purchase a stake of up to 3% between December 10 and December 30, and it could buy the rest of
the packet between May 1 and October 27, 2006. Mol said it would not call the option during the first period. The price of the stake was pegged to the weighted average share price in the 90 days preceding the calling of the option. Calculating with Mol's closing share price of 21,100 on Wednesday, the 10% stake has a market value of about Ft 229bn.