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FinMin sees Budapest Airport sold by the end of year

Hungary's Finance Minister János Veres said on Thursday that the sale of Budapest Airport would be completed by the end of the year, news portal Portfolio.hu reported. “According to the ÁPV (State Privatisation Holding) procedure rules, I believe there is no way a decision could be made by 30 November," Veres told a business conference as Reuters reported. “We expect to close the transaction financially as well by the end of the year," he added. The single-round tender, that closed on Monday, saw bids coming in from Britain's BAA Plc, Germany's Hochtief AG and Frankfurt airport operator Fraport AG, as Australia's Macquarie and Copenhagen Airports bowed out of the competition. An aborted tender process saw bids as high as USD 2 billion in the first round, and the government may use some of the money to help close its budget gap. Veres said he had an agreement with the central bank on how to clear the inflow of foreign currency, but refused to say what the agreement was.