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Hungarian minister weighs in on Heineken case

Hungarian minister weighs in on Heineken case

Budapest, March 20 (MTI) – Hungary’s national interests will not be violated without consequences in the country or beyond, the government office chief told lawmakers on Monday, referring to a planned bill on the use of totalitarian symbols in retail trade.

János Lázár said one of the reasons for the bill was because the Heineken group had abused its market position, making the production and distribution of the brand Igazi Csíki Beer impossible.

Moreover, however, the proposal aims to protects the human dignity of Holocaust survivors or victims of communism who may feel humiliated when symbols of national socialism or communism are used in retail trade.

He asked fellow lawmakers to always protect Hungary’s national interests. When these are attacked “in the field of trademarks … the response should be a trademark case,” he said.

The Heineken group is a strategic partner for the government so the proposal is not about attacking the company as an employer and taxpayer, he said. It only wants to ensure that multinationals also respect Hungary’s national interests, Lázár added. The conflict between the breweries could have been resolved by signing a common trademark agreement, but Heineken refused to seek such a solution and used all possible means to thwart Hungarian interests, he added.

Source: MTI

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