Hungary To Privatize
After six months of dithering and taking flack from the international finance community, Hungary has pushed a privatization law through parliament. Although further glitches are possible, the law should make it easier for foreign investors to negotiate to buy state properties. Those likely to go on the block include electric utility MVM and oil-and-gas company MOL. The government probably will also float a further stake in the state telecom provider, Matav, which is already 30% owned by Deutsche Telekom and Ameritech. Such sales may pull in $1.25 billion by yearend. These moves are meant to show that Socialist Prime Minister Gyula Horn is serious about continued reform.