Gov’t helps prime minister’s son-in-law search for tenant

November 28, 2016

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Prime Minister Viktor Orbán’s son-in-law István Tiborcz acquired a 75 percent stake in WHG Ingatlan Kft. in August this year to become the part owner of an industrial property in the northwestern Hungarian city of Komárom worth an estimated HUF 1 billion, reports investigative journalism website Direkt36.

WHB Ingatlan’s other owner is Attila Paár, the man who bought Tiborcz’s stake in Elios Innovativ Energetikai Zrt. in April 2015 after it was revealed that OLAF (the European Commission’s Anti-Fraud Agency) was investigating the manner in which the company won a series of public lighting tenders in 2013-2014.

In March 2015 WHB Ingatlan purchased a property in the Komárom business park previously rented by Perlos, a company that manufactured accessories for Nokia mobile devices.

Last year, the municipal authorities invested some HUF 600 million in EU funds to modernize the business park, thereby making it more attractive to potential tenants.

According to Direkt36, the government has been lobbying investors in South Korea to set up operations there, in particular Woory Industries, an electronic parts manufacturer.

In November 2014, the Hungarian government took part in a South Korean business forum in Seoul, with Orbán and economics minister Mihály Varga attending.  Shortly after, it was announced that Woory Industries would invest USD 38 million setting up manufacturing operations in Komárom between 2015 and 2018 and creating 150 jobs, but this has yet to materialize.

Sources in Komárom tell Direkt36 that Woory Industries is no longer interested in setting up there. Representatives of the company could not be reached for comment.

Hungary’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Trade informed Direkt36 that meetings with the South Korean company are still ongoing, but would not comment on their progress.