Opposition LMP is initiating a local referendum in Debrecen to prevent the construction of a Chinese battery factory whose massive water consumption it says would aggravate water shortage in the eastern Hungarian city, a local party official said. As subsoil waters have been ebbing here since the 1960s, Debrecen is not the best choice for such a water-intensive plant, Mihály Murguly said. He criticised the government for its failure to canvass the opinion of locals on the issue, which would entail long-term consequences for the city.
Levente Magyar, the parliamentary state secretary of the foreign ministry, announced on August 12 that the largest ever investment project in Hungary will be carried out under an agreement signed with Chinese battery maker CATL, which will set up its second European plant in Debrecen. Magyar said that after a series of talks spanning more than two years, the world’s largest battery maker will invest 3,000 billion forints (EUR 7.6bn) in a plant occupying 221 hectares and employing 9,000 people.