Hungary’s smaller gas stations have still not received the subsidies they were promised by the government, Alliance of Independent Gas Stations President Gábor Egri told ATV News.
Two weeks ago, the interest group’s member filling stations announced that they would shut down in protest over the August 20 holiday weekend unless they received July’s state subsidies of 20 Ft per liter from the government to compensate for the artifically-low fixed price on regular gas in Hungary.
The government ostensibly set aside 18.5 billion Ft. (US $44.8 million) for this purpose a few days before August 20, but Egri claims that “the small filling stations have not seen a forint [of this money].”
In addition to the artificial price cap on fuel, Egri said smaller gas stations have to deal with other difficulties as well. Since the price of both natural gas and power have increased so dramatically, filling stations and the SME sector in general may have to lay off a large number of people in a short period of time.
Eszter Bujdos of Holtankoljak.hu told the TV news outlet that demand for fuel, especially gasoline, decreases as the summer holidays come to an end. Sales will increase somewhat at filling stations in the capital, while there continues to be a fuel shortage in Hungary.
In the past few days, private gas stations have been informed by [state oil and gas supplier] MOL that the amount of fuel they will be given is being further reduced. Whereas they were previously getting 50% of gasoline served to them, this has been reduced to 35%.
-Bujdos said to ATV News. [Népszava]