Secret ownership ties between companies operating red sludge reservoirs
TKV Group (Tatai Környezetvédelmi Zrt. and affiliates) in charge of reduction of environmental damages following the red sludge catasrophe in Kolontár in October 2010, has ownership ties to the governing party’s favourite construction company Közgép Zrt., and to the very company – MAL Zrt. – responsible for the accident claiming 10 lives and destroying the living conditions of many more as well.
TKV Group’s offshore owners disappeared just before the companies became involved in red sludge damage reduction works. In the 1990s Hungary’s aluminium producing giant, Hungalu Rt.- a state owned company – was privatized at a significantly low price, in exchange the buyers were supposed take over the reduction of environmental damages caused by aluminium production through the previous decades. Some of these private companies re-positioned themselves on the market as “environmental services”, what means that they started to use red sludge reservoirs to deposit further toxic waste.
Between 2007-2010 TKV Zrt. was owned by a Cyprus based offshore company, Wyatte Holdings Overseas Limited. One of the directors of this company was István Réczey, who was also a director of KP Zeusz Mérnöki Szolgáltató Kft., a company now owned by Árpád Bakonyi (MAL Zrt.) and his family. KP Zeusz holds a significant proportion of MAL Zrt.’s shares (worth around 900 million HuF). VKG, one of the members of the TKV Group is – since 2010 – owned by Pentavia Kft. which has close ties with Közgép Zrt. This latter has won – by itself and as part of various consortiums – more than 200 billion HuF worth public procurement tenders since the 2010 parliamentary elections.