Olympic Ice hockey hopes crash

Ten months ago Hungary won 2-1 on Poland’s ice in Krakow in a game for promotion to the top division. On Sunday Poland avenged the loss and beat Hungary 1-0 in a penalty shootout in Budapest to advance to the Final Olympic Qualification. Fans saw a tense, scoreless game with strong goaltending and disciplined play on both

sides that remained exciting to the very end. In the shootout Márton Vas missed with the first shot before Zapala scored for Poland. Both Andrew Sarauer for Hungary and Aron Chmielewski for Poland missed in the second round, and when Frank Banham hit the metal from a sharp angle the Poles went on to victory.

Milk VAT cut in air

VAT on milk could be cut in a support package being drafted by the Ministry of Agriculture for the dairy industry, daily Magyar Nemzet said on Monday, citing state secretary Gyorgy Czervan. Hungary reduced the VAT rate on pork from 27pc to 5pc at the start of this year, sharply reducing prices for consumers and boosting sales.

Bosch expanding at Hatvan

German-owned automotive industry supplier Bosch group will invest HUF 19 billion at its plant in Hatvan creating 601 jobs, Minister of Foreign Affairs and Trade Péter Szijjártó (to the right in the picture) has announced. The company will receive a HUF 4.7 billion non-refundable state grant for the project, Szijjártó said. With the investment Bosch would produce high-tech products such as

central control units for new-generation electric and hybrid cars, new types of mid- and long-range radars and different types of sensors. He said Bosch had four investment projects in Hungary in 2015 and further announcements can be expected because talks had started about additional investment opportunities. Head of Bosch group in Hungary Javier González Pareja (to the left in the picture) said that with nine subsidiaries of the company operating in the country, Hungary is one of its most important locations.

HÉV takeover ‘possible’

State-owned railway company MÁV could integrate the HÉV suburban railway lines into its own network, daily Magyar Idők said on Monday, citing unnamed government sources. The government recently announced that MÁV would take over the HÉV lines from the city of Budapest with retroactive effect from the start of this year. The paper noted that European Union development funding may not be used for outmoded means of transport, which has excluded the Budapest Public Transport Company (BKV) from a number of tenders for grant money, but MÁV’s eligibility for such funding is far broader. An internal study prepared by BKV puts the cost of upgrading the HÉV lines at HUF 300 billion. This would include buying new rolling stock to replace the HÉV carriages, which are 40 years old on average, for one-third of the amount. Magyar Idők suggested MÁV could run Stadler FLIRT trains, which it already uses on its own commuter routes, on the HÉV lines.

Euro 2016 digs chosen

The Hungarian football team will stay in a luxury hotel in the south of France during the European Championships in June-July. Football Federation MLSZ said it had not been easy to find accommodation because Hungary had qualified late in a playoff, and the better facilities offered by UEFA had

already been taken by other teams. Terre Blanche hotel, spa and golf resort in Provence Côte d’Azur is near airports and the A8 motorway, which was important in its selection, MLSZ said.

Daimler reaches half a million

German carmaker Daimler has produced the 500,000th vehicle at its plant in Kecskemét,

the plant said on Monday. Prime Minister Viktor Orbán paid a visit the previous week to mark the milestone and meet new plant director Christian Wolff. Daimler opened the EUR 1 billion plant in spring 2012. It started making compact B-class models then added the CLA coupe in 2013 and the CLA Shooting Brake in 2015. Mercedes-Benz Manufacturing Hungary employs almost 4000 workers now and relies on 32 local suppliers.

Uber licences ‘under threat’

A proposal before the government would strip ride-sharing Uber service providers of their licence plates if they break rules, János Fónagy, a state secretary at the development ministry, has warned. Fónagy spoke following talks between the government, taxi drivers’ unions and authorities, and pledged that the government would step up against Uber drivers who “neglect Hungarian rules, break laws or fail to pay taxes”. Fónagy complained that Uber’s Netherlands central office has not provided any help to the Hungarian authorities’ investigations. Responding to requests from taxi drivers, the ministry would also consider banning Uber’s mobile phone application. The talks are scheduled to continue soon but taxi drivers’ union MTSZ said the conference had yielded no results. MTSZ, representing about 300 drivers, will decide whether to continue participation in the negotiations.

Opposite sides recall WWII

The Federation of Hungarian Resistance Fighters and Antifascists (MEASZ) marked the 71st anniversary last Friday of the end of the Second World War in Budapest. “Although it is questioned by many, there had been Hungarian resistance fighters who participated in the liberation of Budapest,” MEASZ president Vilmos Hanti said, calling their fight against the German occupation a

patriotic act. He warned that the ideology of fascism survived in everyday life, noting the recent idea of erecting a statue to Bálint Hóman, a controversial inter-war minister. On Saturday radical-right organisations held an event to mark the anniversary of a 1945 attempt by Nazi soldiers to break out of Buda Castle, besieged by Soviet troops (pictured). Speakers hailed the memory of German and allied Hungarian soldiers in the attempt. The participants, many wearing WWII uniform or outfit, sang the Hungarian and the pre-1945 German anthems. The demonstration was attended by several hundred people, while about 100 anti-fascist counter-demonstrators sounded horns, beat drums and chanted slogans such as “Nazi go home” or “Nazi scum”. A police cordon separated the two groups.

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