Last year has been a busy time in terms of warranty & indemnity insurance for the CEE market, according to W&I Insurance Broker and Advisor and former M&A lawyer Gergely Juhasz.
Judit Zalan-Lipak Appointed to Vanguards Group's Deputy General Legal Counsel
Former EY Attorney at Law/Manager Judit Zalan-Lipak has joined Vanguards in Hungary as its Group Deputy General Counsel.
Hungarian Competition Authority to Propose Sustainable Product Routes and Boost Domestic Production in the Insulation Materials Market
In August 2022 the Hungarian Competition Authority (GVH) closed its accelerated sector inquiry into the market for insulation materials, providing recommendations to manufacturers, the public, waste management operators and the legislator, aiming for a decrease in product prices.
The Central Bank of Hungary Suspended the Placement of Shares of a Public Limited Company
On 22 July 2022, the Central Bank of Hungary (MNB) suspended the placement of shares of FuturAqua Nyrt. (Issuer) to be issued in the course of the share capital increase and imposed a supervisory fine of HUF 5 million (~ EUR 12,500).
Corporate Proceeding Changes from 1 August 2022
The main amendments to the decree of the Ministry of Justice on certain aspects of the company registration procedure and the register of companies entered into force on 1 August 2022, while certain provisions enter into force on 1 September 2022. The new rules became necessary to comply with Directive (EU) 2017/1132 of the European Parliament and of the Council.
Moore Legal Hungary Advises Alpac Capital on Investment in TC2
Moore Legal Hungary has advised Alpac Capital on its EUR 2 million investment in TC2.
US Terminates the Double Taxation Treaty with Hungary
On 8 July 2022, the U.S. Treasury Department announced the termination of the double taxation treaty with Hungary concluded in 1979. The termination is effective from 1 January 2024.
Havel & Partners, Savoric & Partners, ODI Law, and Hillbridges Advise on CCC Group Refinancing
Havel & Partners, Savoric & Partners, ODI Law, and Hillbridges have advised a syndicate of banks on the approximately EUR 196 million syndicated cross-border refinancing loan to the CCC Group. Linklaters, Lakatos Koves & Partners, and Filip & Company reportedly advised the lenders as well.
KATA Taxation Closed down in Hungary
On 12 July 2022, just one day after its proposal, the Hungarian Parliament accepted the new law that affects more than 430,000 KATA taxpayers in Hungary, most of whom will no longer be eligible for this tax regime starting from 1 September 2022.
Hungary Opens Its Online Sports Betting Market from 2023 and Sets Licensing Conditions
Hungary has ended the state monopoly on the online sports betting market and this now makes way for the market entry of operators incorporated in the European Economic Area (EEA) ("EEA Operators").
ESG Talks: M&A Trends and the Future of Due Diligence – A CEE Legal Matters Round Table
On July 7, four leading lawyers from Austria, the Czech Republic, Hungary, and Ukraine sat down for a virtual round table moderated by CEE Legal Matters Managing Editor Radu Cotarcea to discuss the increasing prominence of ESG issues and their impact on M&A transactions, due diligence procedures, and the role of the lawyers themselves.
Hungary: ESG in the Supply Chain – Why Does It Matter?
The importance of ESG in business has become clearer as the moral and ecological reasons are now obvious to everyone. In theory, all companies support the idea of doing business in a more sustainable and climate-friendly way. However, in practice, companies usually only do something when they have to. In Hungary, there isn’t any binding ESG supply chain act in place yet, which could wrongly lead to the conclusion that the topic is unimportant. Yet considerations about ESG in the supply chain are no longer nice-to-have but have become a must-have globally, and Hungary is no exception. There are various locally relevant reasons for which companies must start prioritizing the management of ESG risks in their supply chain.
Recent EU-level Case Law Related to National-level Foreign Direct Investment Screening
Since the end of the 2010s foreign direct investment (“FDI”) considerations have been on the forefront of transaction planning and management. Although a unified EU-level screening mechanism is not in place, recently the European Commission (“EC”) closed a landmark case, while another one is currently ongoing before the European Court of Justice (“ECJ”) where the interplay of EU law and more specifically, EU merger law and national FDI rules were/are assessed. Dicta in these cases may have considerable implications in national FDI practice. This summary therefore provides a quick glance-through of the key notables taken from these cases.
Dentons Advises on Sale of Affidea to Groupe Bruxelles Lambert
Dentons has advised private investment firm B-Flexion and the Affidea Group on the sale of Affidea to Groupe Bruxelles Lambert. Kirkland & Ellis reportedly advised the buyer.
Bird & Bird and White & Case Advise on OTP's Acquisition of Alpha Bank in Albania
Bird & Bird has advised Hungary’s OTP Bank Group on its acquisition of the Albanian subsidiary of Greek Alpha Bank for EUR 55 million. White & Case advised Alpha Services and Holdings. Boga & Associates reportedly advised OTP as well. Kalo & Associates reportedly also advised Alpha.
Hungary: New Legislation on State Supervision of Entities of Strategic Importance
Government Decree No. 230/2022 passed on 28 June 2022 introduced a new regime which enables the Hungarian Government to place certain entities under the supervision of the Hungarian State. Such entities shall have a significant or dominant position in the energy industry, in particular in the following sectors having strategic and national security importance: (i) electricity, (ii) natural gas, (iii) crude oil, (iv) district heating and (v) mining. The legislation expressly mentions two entities, i.e. FGSZ Natural Gas Transmission Private Company Limited by Shares and the Hungarian Hydrocarbon Stockpiling Association.
Several Energy Companies Can be Subject to State Supervision
Due to the armed conflict and humanitarian disaster in Ukraine and in order to avert the consequences of such conflict in Hungary, the Government has adopted a decree that entered into force on 29 June 2022, on the basis of which, in order to safeguard the public interest of continuity and security of supply, the Government may place under the supervision of the Hungarian State the operators with significant or dominant market power in the energy industry, in particular in electricity, natural gas, petroleum, district heating and mining industry, including e.g. FGSZ Foldgazszallito Zrt. and the Hungarian Hydrocarbon Stockholders Association.
Hungary Implements New EU Cross-border Conversion Rules
EU businesses are free to cross borders and relocate their headquarters to another Member State. The amended EU directive and the corresponding new Hungarian rules aim to help companies doing so. In order to make it easier for companies to establish themselves in another Member State and to make cross-border operations more attractive, especially for small and medium-sized enterprises, the European Union decided back in 2019 to amend the EU directive on cross-border mergers, divisions and mergers.