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Hungary to impose windfall taxes on banks, companies


© Reuters. FILE PHOTO. Viktor Orban, the Hungarian Prime Minister, stands in front of the Budapest Parliament, Hungary to take the oath in office on May 16, 2022. REUTERS/Bernadett Szabo

BUDAPEST, Reuters – Hungary’s Prime Minister Viktor Orban declared Wednesday that banks, telecoms companies, large retailers, insurers and energy companies will be required to contribute a portion of “larger part” of extra profits into the State Budget.

Orban claimed that windfall taxes would be applicable in 2022-2023. Orban stated that companies and banks that earn “extra profits” from the difficult circumstances of the conflict in Ukraine, and the surging price rises, will be required to pay for the cost of the strengthening and financing the caps on household energy bills.

Orban declined to give details about the revenue target of the new measures. However, he said all details would be revealed on Thursday.

Orban explained that banks and insurers as well as large retail chains and the energy sector, along with trading and telecoms firms and companies will have to deposit large amounts of extra profit into state funds. These funds will finance energy price caps and development of the army.

Orban, who won the fourth term of his four-year tenure in November 2010 elections, has not been defeated by opposition. He decided to tax banks and other financial sectors in order to close the budget gap.

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Orban stabilized the economy by imposing a variety of tax breaks on banks, retailers and energy companies after 2010. This helped to reduce the deficit while reducing investor confidence.

Following Orban’s comments on Wednesday, the forint dropped to 39.75 against euro at around 389 while OTP Bank shares fell 4.69%.

The nationalist leader was faced with an increase in inflation and had placed prices caps on basic food, fuels, and mortgages. He also capped energy costs.