Gergely Gulyás, the prime minister's chief of staff, said Hungary's government has decided to restrict the fuel price cap of HUF 480 (EUR 1.19) per liter to privately-owned vehicles, farm machinery, tractors and taxis, at the recommendation of oil and gas company MOL.
Gulyás told a regular press briefing that MOL’s main refinery in Százhalombatta, near Budapest, which covers 100 percent of Hungary’s fuel needs and refines Russian crude, has had to be shut down for maintenance work. Hungary will now have to source its fuel supply from imports and by freeing up one-quarter of the country’s strategic reserves, he said. Whether a vehicle is eligible for the capped fuel price will be determined based on the barcode on its registration licence, he said. As hitherto, the market price applies in the case of vehicles of over 7.5 tonnes with Hungarian license plates and vehicles with foreign license plates, as well as fuel cans. Gulyás noted the war in Ukraine and the related sanctions had buckled Europe’s energy supplies, with the price of crude and natural gas skyrocketing. There are no guarantees, he added, that crude deliveries would be continuous in the autumn and winter, so releasing the entire strategic reserves was off-limits, and only as much as there is a “real chance” of replacing in the next six to nine months could be freed.
Photo credit: MTI