State-owned companies have adapted flexibly and effectively to the situation caused by the coronavirus; the standard of public services has not changed despite the epidemic, and all this shows that state-owned companies provide a stable basis for restarting the economy, said the minister without portfolio in charge of state assets.
Andrea Mager, at her annual hearing in the Parliamentary Budget Committee, claimed, however, that despite the successful measures to ensure the quality of public services, the epidemic had a significant impact on the turnover of state-owned companies.
According to yearly forecasts, the direct cost impact will be over 15 billion forints, while the indirect effect on profit-and-loss will exceed 108 billion forints.
The minister stated that companies that had to continuously maintain levels of service even amidst sharp drops in demand were hit the hardest by the crisis.
From state-owned companies she mentioned transport companies first. She said that the integration of the Volán companies was successfully completed in 2019; and this year another important step was taken towards the coordination of MÁV and Volánbusz by transferring Volánbusz ownership to MÁV Zrt.
Andrea Mager explained that the next step in the process will be to create a single, integrated national transport company, and the process will include the renewal of the bus fleet:
866 new buses have already been purchased and the procurement of an additional 1,000 buses is in progress at the moment.
Ms Mager pointed out that the position of the MVM Group has strengthened since 2010, which is due to the acquisition of Hungarian service providers. This process will be completed in 2021 with the E.ON - MVM transaction, after which MVM will be the dominant player in the Hungarian market.
In addition, the MVM Group is even planning a regional acquisition with the aim of becoming a European-level energy company with a customer base of more than 10 million.
Among the MVM Group's transactions, she pointed out the acquisition of the Mátra Power Plant. The power plant covers 10 to 20 percent of the country’s energy supply, so she called its purchase an important step because of the country’s energy sovereignty. The MVM Group aims to replace lignite-based technology in the power plant with new, more efficient technology with lower carbon-dioxide emission.
In answer to a question, the minister said that owing to the transaction, the power plant will continue to operate stably and securely, and the state will be able to implement a complex regional development project.