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Budapest prepares for gas utility privatization

The local council of Budapest expects to complete a study on the possible privatization of a 50%-plus-one-vote stake in Főgáz, the capital's gas company, in August.

On the basis of the completed study, a special committee set up by the local council will decide whether the stake should be sold, and, if so, what conditions should be attached to the sale. After a decision is made, a tender for a consultant in the privatization could be called, deputy mayor Imre Ikvai-Szabó told MTI on Monday.

Főgáz is a profitable company that pays a good dividend, he added.

Answering a question by MTI, Ikvai-Szabó said the company's minority owner - Germany's RWE Gas International - has a purchase right for the stake.

Főgáz had profit of Ft 8 billion on revenue of Ft 190.5 billion in 2007. The local council's dividend from the profit came to Ft 4 billion. Főgáz has assets of more than Ft 40 billion. (MTI – Econews)