Budapest (MTI) – Green opposition LMP said it will submit a bill to parliament aimed at stopping the central bank from “wasting” public money any further.
Outlining LMP’s proposals, deputy group leader Erzsébet Schmuck said the National Bank of Hungary (NBH) should pay its profits into the state treasury in the form of dividends. The bank’s foundations should be wound up and its ownership of companies should be limited to those that help the bank perform its basic tasks. Further, the bank should be prohibited from “donating” more than it can finance from revenue generated from fines.
Under the governorship of György Matolcsy the central bank has accumulated “huge powers” and can now do “whatever it wants”, she insisted.
Years of devaluation and the conversion of foreign currency mortgages into forint has left the bank with hundreds of billions of forints (hundreds of millions of euros) in profits, “which the bank spends as if it were its own and not public money,” Schmuck said.
Over the past two years, the Matolcsy-led central bank spent more money on real estate and art purchases, as well as higher education for the sake of teaching the governor’s “unorthodox economic policies”, than art galleries or the state secretariat for education, she said.
Schmuck insisted that the reason why Matolcsy had asked the government to restrict public access to information on the central bank’s foundations was because he had grown tired of all the data requests made in connection with them.