Budapest, September 5 (MTI) – Hungary’s National Bus Procurement Committee, a body established to coordinate purchases by public transport companies with the aim of supporting local industry, has approved government funding for the purchase of 436 new buses, the economy minister said on Monday.
The bus purchases will be made primarily by national bus operator Volán and local transport companies, Mihály Varga told MTI. Volán has a number of contracts that are about to expire and it will need new buses, he added.
The bus procurement committee also approved the continued operation of some 150 used buses already on the roads, Varga said.
On the topic of replacement buses that will be needed during the renovation of Budapest’s third metro line, he said the metropolitan council, and specifically Budapest Mayor István Tarlós, are committed to finding a way for the capital to be able to replace metro services with Hungarian-made buses. Around 150 articulated buses are needed to replace metro services, the minister noted.
Varga criticised the tender for replacement buses currently being worked on by transport company BKK for not taking into consideration Hungary’s bus industry. He said BKK had not accepted a single proposal that would have made it possible to use Hungarian-made replacement buses during the upgrade.
The minister said Tarlós and the Budapest leadership are committed to strengthening Hungarian bus manufacturing but have so far been unsuccessful in enforcing their will with BKK.