Hollosi Information eXchange /HIX/
HIX MOZAIK 571
Copyright (C) HIX
1995-09-09
Új cikk beküldése (a cikk tartalma az író felelőssége)
Megrendelés Lemondás
1 OMRI Daily Digest - 8 September 1995 (mind)  41 sor     (cikkei)
2 CET - 8 September 1995 (mind)  126 sor     (cikkei)
3 VoA - Magyarorszag/Ikarusz (mind)  70 sor     (cikkei)
4 VoA - Magyarorszag/Gazdassag (mind)  60 sor     (cikkei)

+ - OMRI Daily Digest - 8 September 1995 (mind) VÁLASZ  Feladó: (cikkei)

OMRI DAILY DIGEST
No. 175, 8 September 1995

JOINT MILITARY EXERCISE BEGINS IN SLOVAKIA. A joint military exercise on
7 September began in the central Slovak military training area at Lest,
TASR reported. Some 1,000 soldiers from the Czech Republic, Hungary,
Poland, Ukraine, Romania, and Slovakia are participating, while Austria
is attending as an observer. This is the first international military
exercise to be held in Slovakia. The Hungarian contingent the previous
day was detained for three hours at the Slovak border as customs
officials were reluctant to let the soldiers cross the border with
weapons in hand. -- Sharon Fisher, OMRI, Inc.

IMF TO DISCUSS STAND-BY DEAL WITH HUNGARY. An IMF delegation has begun
talks in Budapest on a stand-by agreement with Hungary, international
media reported on 6 September. The agreement would involve two separate
loans totaling $800 million, which Hungary plans to spend on budget
reform and structural changes. The delegation is to review Hungary's
economic stabilization program, a three-year economic strategy plan, and
next year's budget. Preliminary reports say that the IMF is satisfied
with Hungary's stabilization plan and its proposed budget deficit for
1996 of 258 billion forints ($1.9 billion), which would represent 3.9%
of GDP. One of the preconditions for a stand-by loan was setting the
deficit at a maximum of 3% of GDP. The IMF also wants monetary and wage
reform as well as further austerity measures in addition to those
adopted by the government in March 1995. -- Zsofia Szilagyi, OMRI, Inc.

MOLDOVAN PRESIDENT ON RESOLUTION OF TRANSDNIESTRIAN CONFLICT. Mircea
Snegur told Hungary's Duna TV that he is confident the Transdniestrian
conflict will "sooner or later" be solved by political means. He said
the Moldovan side will display "as much patience and persistence" as is
needed in order for Tiraspol to understand that "their intentions to set
up a confederation do not have a chance." Snegur said granting Gagauz-
type autonomy status to the Transdniestrian region would be "a fair
solution," Infotag reported on 7 September. -- Michael Shafir, OMRI,
Inc.

[As of 12:00 CET]

Compiled by Jan Cleave

+ - CET - 8 September 1995 (mind) VÁLASZ  Feladó: (cikkei)

Friday, 08 September 1995
Volume 2, Issue 173


BUSINESS NEWS
-------------

**BUDAPEST SEES MORE ON THE RICHTER SCALE**
  The Hungarian privatization agency, APV, said it wants to sell
  20 percent more of pharmaceutical giant Richter Gedeon in a
  private placement.  APV Spokesman Adam Dudits said this will
  be the first phase of Richter's privatization.  Right now, APV
  owns about 62 percent of the company, other investors have 33
  percent and employees own about 5 percent.  Dudits said the
  government wants the placement done before the end of the
  year.  But he won't say how much money the state hopes to
  raise from the sale of the stake in Richter.  Richter is the
  biggest pharmaceutical company in eastern Europe.  Dudits said
  the placement will be led by  Creditanstalt Securities  and
  the London-based investment bank Henry Schroeder & Company.
  The government won't release information on further plans for
  privatizing Richter. --David Fink


**HUNGARIAN NATIONAL BANK CLOSING LONDON OFFICE**
  The National Bank of Hungary has announced it's going to stop
  all the activities of the London-based Hungarian International
  Bank by  December 31 of next year.  The bank issued a
  statement yesterday saying the Hungarian International Bank is
  solvent and will honor all its payment obligations.


**MARKET RIPE FOR HUNGARIAN LOAN REQUESTS**
  The Hungarian National Bank said it'll have to tap
  international capital markets for $1.5 to $2 billion next
  year.  The NBH's 1995 borrowing target was $1.5 billion.  NBH
  vice-president Frigyes Harshegyi said even though the NBH
  fulfilled this year's borrowing requirements in June, it's
  taking advantage of market conditions to secure advance
  funding for next year.  He said right now, the NBH has foreign
  currency reserves of almost $8 billion which give the bank the
  freedom to wait for ideal market conditions before issuing
  paper.  The bank's total borrowing requirement for 1996 will
  be $3.5 billion but $1.5 billion will be covered by private
  sector borrowing.


**BRNO HOSTS CEFTA MEETING**
  Prime ministers from the four Central European Free Trade Area,
  or CEFTA, countries will meet in the Czech city of Brno Monday
  amid signs that all is not well in trade relations among the
  former East Bloc states.  All four CEFTA members: Poland,
  Hungary and the Czech and Slovak republics, said they're
  committed to rapid regional trade liberalization.  But the
  group hopes it won't be lumped into a post-Communist ante room
  to the European Union.  Right-wing Czech Prime Minister Vaclav
  Klaus, who will host the meeting, is particularly eager to
  concentrate CEFTA on breaking down trade barriers, not
  politics.  CEFTA members have already agreed to abolish many
  existing tariffs and other impediments, but there have also
  been growing protests within the group.  Hungary has
  complained that it has yet to realize the fruits of
  membership.  It ran a $113 million trade deficit within the
  group during the first half of this year.  It's CEFTA trade
  deficit last year totalled $330 million.  Meanwhile the Czechs
  are fuming over Slovakia's recent decision to scrap tariffs on
  small cars.  That'll take away an advantage enjoyed by Czech
  carmaker Skoda which alone had tariff-free access under a
  customs union agreed when Czechoslovakia split in 1993.
  Poland has pushed hard to broaden CEFTA membership, and said
  it wants to develop a banking consortium to strengthen trade
  between CEFTA countries.  But there is one thing CEFTA can
  agree on.  They're expected to vote in Brno to add Slovenia to
  its ranks.  Trade ministers have already agreed to the
  expansion in principle.



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+ - VoA - Magyarorszag/Ikarusz (mind) VÁLASZ  Feladó: (cikkei)

(Elnezest az esetleges kisbetukert, de az eredeti szoveg csupa
nagybetuvel volt irva, amit at kellett cserelnem.)

Buchwald Amy

*****************************************************************
date=9/7/95
type=correspondent report
number=2-184928
title=Hungary / Buses / l
dateline=Barry Wood
byline=Prague
content=
voiced at:

Intro:  The problem of industrial restructuring is common to all
the transforming economies of Eastern Europe and the former
Soviet Union.  But as V-o-A's Barry Wood reports, Ikarus (ee kar
ooz) -- the big former monopoly bus producer in Hungary -- is
having a particularly tough time in restructuring.

Text:  Travelers to the former east bloc have seen Ikarus buses,
even if they did  not  know it.  The long, boxy articulated
Ikarus buses trundle through the streets of hundreds of cities
and towns in Eastern Europe and the former Soviet Union.

In its glory years in the late 1980's, Ikarus turned out 13
thousand buses a year at its Budapest assembly plant.  This year,
production may  not  reach even two thousand. Employment has been
cut in half to five thousand, and still the company cannot make a
profit.

Ikarus is still largely in Hungarian government hands -- even
though Russians have a minority interest.  The Hungarians hope to
have found a new buyer for Ikarus by the end of the year.

Laszlo Halpern is a professor of management at the Budapest
Institute of Economics.  Mr. Halpern says this flagship of the
old  socialist economy has to completely reinvent itself, if it
is to survive in a competitive world market.

                           //Halpern actuality//

         Still,  no  major restructuring has taken place.  So I
         think Ikarus somehow needs a strategy, improvement of
         product, and somehow to split up into smaller units.
         And perhaps in this way they can catch up with
         international tendencies and somehow survive. Otherwise
         there is  no  hope.

                              //End actuality//

The problems of Ikarus are compounded by the fact it produced
mainly for the Soviet and East German markets -- both of which
have been lost.  The Eastern Germans now buy their buses from
Western Germany and, although the Russians would like to buy,
they are short of money.

Professor Halpern says Ikarus may find itself in the unfortunate
situation -- even though it has cut production by two thirds --
it may still be producing too many buses for an increasingly
demanding and selective global market. ( Signed)

neb / bdw / wod/mmk

07-Sep-95 12:20 pm edt (1620 utc)
nnnn

source: Voice of America

+ - VoA - Magyarorszag/Gazdassag (mind) VÁLASZ  Feladó: (cikkei)

(Elnezest az esetleges kisbetukert, de az eredeti szoveg csupa
nagybetuvel volt irva, amit at kellett cserelnem.)

Buchwald Amy

*****************************************************************
date=9/7/95
type=correspondent report
number=2-184926
title=Hungary / Econ / l-o
dateline=Barry Wood
byline=Prague
content=
voiced at:

Intro:  Officials from the International Monetary Fund are in
Budapest -- holding detailed discussions with the Hungarian
finance ministry on the government's program to reduce the budget
and foreign trade deficits.  V-o-A's Barry Wood reports the I-M-F
team is likely to be impressed by recent progress made by the
Hungarians.

Text:  The I-M-F mission will be in Budapest for another week.
It is reviewing financial data and measuring initial results of
the government's austerity measures introduced last March.

Hungary has very large budget and trade deficits and needs I-M-F
money to avert financial difficulties.  If the talks go well,
Hungary could begin receiving I-M-F credits before the end of the
year.

Hungary has a unique mixture of good and bad results from the
five-year transition from a state-controlled, communist economy.
On the positive side, foreign businesses have immense confidence
in Hungary's future.  They have invested more than eight billion
dollars in this small, strategically located economy.  That
amount is a stunning 33 percent of the entire foreign investment
attracted to Eastern Europe and the former Soviet Union.

On the negative side, Hungary's democratically elected government
inherited a 25-billion-dollar foreign debt, run up during the
communist period.  In addition, a generous welfare system made it
difficult to control state expenditures, with the result being a
chronic budget deficit.

The measures introduced last March were intended to remedy the
problem and win the backing of the I-M-F.  Welfare payments have
been scaled back; the retirement age raised to 62; a surcharge
levied on imports; and the currency sharply devalued.  Thus far,
the measures seem to be working.  The trade deficit is expected
to fall this year and the budget deficit, as a percentage of
output, is set to decline. (Signed)

neb/bdw/wod/cf

07-Sep-95 11:52 am edt (1552 utc)
nnnn

source: Voice of America


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