The Czech Banking Association has revised upwards its growth expectations for the country this year to 4.3 percent from the previous 3.2 percent in June. June’s prediction had also been upped from the association’s 2.6 percent forecast in April. The association also sees 2018 Czech growth at 3.2 percent compared with the previous 2.7 percent. Higher than expected domestic demand and a continued strong export performance are behind the revision.
Czech musician and politician Petr Hannig says he has collected the 20 signatures from members of parliament needed to be a candidate for presidential elections. Hannig told the Czech News Agency that he submitted the names to the Ministry of Interior on Wednesday. He said backing came from across the political spectrum and he would be seeking more names by the November 7 deadline for candidacies to be submitted, Hannig is the leader of the Common Sense Party which he founded in 2002, The Czech presidential elections will be held in January.
In tennis, Czech player Karolína Plíšková has suffered her first defeat in the end of season WTA Finals tournament being staged in Singapore. The top Czech women’s singles player was defeated by Latvia’s Jelena Ostapenko 3:6, 1:6. After winning her first two matches in the opening group, Plíšková had already secured her place in the next round.
The son of deceased Czech singer Věra Špinarová has refused the national honour that head of state Miloš Zeman wanted to award her on Saturday’s national day, the Czech News Agency reported. Son Adam Pavlík said he was convinced his mother would not have accepted the award and would not have regarded it as important. He added that his mother did not like president Zeman and did not regard him as representative of the nation as a whole. President Zeman indicated during a recent tour of Moravia that Špinarová, who died in March at the age of 65, was on the list of those to be awarded at a ceremony on Saturday.
Top Czech NATO official Petr Pavel has signalled moves by the western military alliance to renew some ties with Russia, Pavel, the chairman of the alliance’s Military Committee, said, according to a TASS report, that its top representatives should meet with members of the Russian general staff by the end of the year. The moves are an attempt renew military and political relations, he added. NATO relations with Russia were frozen following the annexation of Crimea and conflict in eastern Ukraine.
In football, there’s been more misery for Sparta Prague. In the main Czech cup competition, the MOL Cup, they lost in the last 16 to Baník Ostrava. Sparta came back twice from behind to level the match at 2:2 but lost 2:4 after penalties. Sparta manager Andrea Stramaccioni had picked out the cup competition as a priority for the club and a means to qualify for the Champions League given their poor performance so far in the domestic league. Sparta are fifth in the league, trailing leaders Viktoria Plzeň by 15 points.
The high court in Olomouc has provisionally overturned a ban on the use of the taxi application Uber in the Czech Republic’s second city Brno. The ban took effect in July after the city council argued that although it appeared like a regular taxi service, Uber, did not fulfil the licensing and other conditions that other tax drivers were forced to meet. A court still has to give a definite ruling on whether the Uber services can be allowed long term or not.
The first deputy chairman of the Christian Democrats, Marian Jurečka, has
blamed the party’s unimpressive showing in the general elections on their
abandonment of a deal to run together with the Mayors and Independents and
“poor communication”. Mr. Jurečka made the comments in an interview on
the SeznamZpravy.cz news site.
Mr. Jurečka also said that controversial comments by Christian Democrats chairman Pavel Bělobrádek on social media had cost them dearly. The party won 10 seats in the lower house for 5.8 percent of the vote.
Election winners ANO have ruled out speaking to representatives of the
Mayors and Independents Group or TOP 09 in a second round of talks on
forming a new government, the party’s leader, Andrej Babiš, told Czech
Television on Wednesday evening. The ANO chief said the two groupings had a
minimum number of deputies in the lower house and what’s more behaved in
a hostile manner toward his party.
Mr. Babiš said he would like his new government when it is formed to win a confidence vote in the lower house before Christmas. His party received almost 30 percent of the vote in last weekend’s elections and are currently sounding out other groupings on a possible coalition.