VIENNA - American Express Bank Ltd. said that its payment card would be available to relatively prosperous Hungarians.

In its first such announcement covering a former member of the Soviet bloc, the American Express Co. unit said an applicant would need an annual salary of at least $25,000 and a bank deposit or guarantee of $5,000 in U.S. dollars or another major currency.

2 Participating Banks

American Express will issue cards with two Hungarian banks, General Banking and Trust Co. and Commercial and Credit Bank.

American Express has had a financial and travel services office in Budapest since January 1991, one of 16 in Eastern Europe. Most than 3,000 shops, restaurants, and other establishments in Hungary accept American Express cards.

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