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Market developments in Hungary over the past year include record-high spend in the film industry and a suspension of EU data protection rights under GDPR.


The government announced, in May 2020, plans to suspend its obligation to certain protections granted by EU data protection law until the existing ‘state of emergency’ period ends.


Opposition politician Bernadett Szél commented in a statement, ‘Restricting data rights is unnecessary and disproportionate, and furthermore does not help, even hinders the fight against the epidemic.’


Ms Szél continued: ‘Due to the opacity of government decision-making and the government’s relationship with the public, data already had to be fought for. Now they even legalise the withholding of public interest information.’


Separately, the National Film Institute announced record-breaking spend in 2019 of EUR456 million, a 50 per cent increase from the previous year.


The National Film Institute revealed data in July 2020, showing a total of 319 registered productions, with international productions accounting for 94 per cent of total spend.


The country offers a 30 per cent tax rebate for film and television productions, reaching 37.5 per cent with the addition of qualifying non-Hungarian costs.


According to Csaba Káel, Chairman of the National Film Institute, Hungary continues to be the most popular filming location on the continent.


Lawyers say that during the state of emergency caused by the pandemic, film industry participants have worked continually to support production at full capacity.

TIER 1

CMS houses one of the largest TMT groups in the country. Working with its UK office, the local team assisted a Polish telecommunications operator with the launch of its satellite-based television platform. The team, managed by Dóra Petrányi, works on wider sector-related matters such as advertising tax, regulatory compliance and disputes.


Media lawyers at Lakatos, Köves and Partners provide "timely and pro-active responses”. The team is also described by clients as proactive and reliable. Péter Lakatos manages the TMT group working on transactional cases connected with cable television, radio, print and online media.

 

Oppenheim’s industry commitment is evidenced by its media, publishing and entertainment practice group. Covering contentious and non-contentious work, the team advises on contract negotiations, licensing and disputes. Attila Terényi is among key contacts for media, with knowledge of data protection, copyright and commercial transactions.


TIER 2

Intellectual property is the primary focus of Hegymegi-Barakonyi és Tarsa Baker McKenzie. The team advises a range of clients including games and software producers, television production companies and publishers. Managed by Zoltán Hegymegi-Barakonyi, lawyers regularly assist clients from the audio-visual sector on matters ranging from license agreements to litigation.


Lendvai and Partners is one of Hungary’s leading media specialists focussed on corporate transactions. Founding partner András Lendvai takes the lead on high profile cases including the cross-border acquisition of a Czech newspaper distributor by the Hungarian subsidiary of a global media company. The team also assisted a London-based television broadcaster on infringement of a television series title.


Lengyel Allen & Overy Ügyvédi Iroda works with audio-visual sector clients, advising on cross-border transactions. The Budapest team is backed by the firm’s global network of lawyers and works closely with neighbouring CEE regions. Key practitioner Hugh Owen represents international clients and has particular experience advising on mergers and acquisitions, joint ventures and takeovers.


TIER 3

bpv Jádi Németh specialises in info communications and media. The firm advises on wide-ranging issues from sector-related transactions and licensing activities to marketing and regulatory matters. Krisztina Ivanics manages the media pracftice, which works closely with the copyright and data privacy department that is led by Andrea Jádi Németh. Other areas of advice include data processing, digital software and e-commerce.


Focussing on corporate, regulatory and anti-trust matters, PRK Partners’ media and telecommunications division is notably active in all three areas of work. The firm served as counsel to a regional television broadcaster in proceedings involving an intellectual property dispute against a telecommunications operator. The team also advised Ringier Axel Springer on the acquisition of a majority stake in Azet.sk, the most visited internet portal in Slovak.


TIER 4

Balazs & Kovatsits Legal Partnership has a good track record advising on copyright matters connected with software, literary works and compositions. The team has extensive experience drafting license contracts and advising on e-commerce, data protection and competition law.  


Copyright and data protection are among core focus areas at VJT & Partners. The team advises global media and entertainment companies on local data protection policy, advertising and marketing. Key practitioners János Tamás and Varga Gábor Hacsi also have extensive experience advising on the transfer and assignment of copyright.

TIER 1

CMS  

Lakatos, Köves and Partners

Oppenheim  


TIER 2

Dentons

Hegymegi-Barakonyi és Tarsa Baker McKenzie

Horváth & Partners DLA Piper

Lendvai and Partners

Lengyel Allen & Overy Ügyvédi Iroda


TIER 3

bpv Jádi Németh  

Bird & Bird

Partos & Noblet - Associated with Hogan Lovells

PRK Partners


TIER 4

Balazs & Kovatsits Legal Partnership

Kinstellar  

VJT & Partners

Réti, Antall & Partners  

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