The European Union is threatened by fragmentation, which can only be
prevented by paying more attention to the needs of individual member
states, the visiting Slovak Prime Minister Petr Pellegrini told journalists
on Wednesday after meeting with his Czech counterpart Andrej Babiš.
He also said that the V4 alliance of the Czech Republic, Slovakia, Hungary and Poland can serve as a tool in enforcing national interests within the European Union.
Prime Minister Pellegrini is also scheduled to meet the Speaker of the lower house Radek Vondráček and Speaker of the Senate Milan Štěch.
Last week, Mr Pellegrini held talks with the Czech President Miloš Zeman during his state visit to Slovakia.
The European Commission on Wednesday announced a new directive which
tackles the problem of dual quality in numerous international brand foods
and other products across different EU countries.
The quality of ingredients in some brand name products was for years inferior in some countries of the former communist bloc. Prague and other newer EU members have long pressed for legislation threatening companies continuing the practice with stiff fines.
Average Czechs are slightly overweight, a survey of household living
conditions carried out by the Czech Statistical Office suggests. According
to the figures, released on Wednesday, 47 percent of Czech men and one
third of Czech women are overweight, while every fifth man and 18 percent
of women are obese.
The average BMI, a measure of body fat by height and weight, was 25.2, with 25 being the upper limit of what is considered normal.
According to the survey, more than one third of Czechs between the ages of 26 and 64 years have a sedentary existence. Men tend to spend more time in sporting activities than women, while women eat more fruit and vegetables than men.
The biggest collection of coins featuring Habsburg Emperor Franz Josef I,
which is estimated to worth 100 million crowns, will be auctioned in Prague
The collection contains 635 coins and medals made of gold and silver, which were minted in the Austro-Hungarian monarchy during Franz Joseph’s reign between the years 1848 and 1916.
Hundreds of collectors from all over the world are expected to take part in the event, held by numismatic auction house Macho & Chlapovič on April 20.
The government on Wednesday approved foreign military missions for 2018 and
2019. The proposal envisages maintaining Czech soldiers on the same
missions, which include for instance Afghanistan, Mali and Iraq. As of next
year, they should also take part in protecting airspace over the Baltic
The foreign missions are expected to cost the defence ministry between 2.1 billion and 2.4 billion crowns. There are currently 806 Czech soldiers serving on foreign missions. Under the proposal, their number could increase to 1081 this year and to 1191 in 2019. The proposal will now be debated by the lower house.
Brussel’s chief Brexit negotiator Michel Barnier will arrive in Prague on
Thursday to discuss the progress of his talks with London with Czech
Mr Barnier is set to meet with the acting Prime Minister Andrej Babiš, foreign minister Martin Stropnický and industry and trade minister Tomáš Hüner, the Czech representation of the European Commission informed in a press release on Wednesday.
The United Kingdom is expected to leave the European Union within a year. The terms of the separation have not yet been finalised.
The mayor of Prague, Adriana Krnáčová of ANO, will not stand again in
elections in the autumn, Mladá fronta Dnes reported on Wednesday. The
newspaper said Ms. Krnáčová was planning to quit politics entirely.
The Slovak-born mayor said she was tired and wished to devote herself more to her family. She has informed ANO chief Andrej Babiš of her decision.
The party leader was among those who has criticised Ms. Krnáčová for her handling of a major roadwork project that has slowed traffic in Prague.
President Miloš Zeman has recommended that ANO leader Andrej Babiš
discuss forming a government with the Communist Party and Tomio Okamura’s
Freedom and Direct Democracy. Mr. Babiš conveyed the president’s
position to journalists after a meeting between the two on Tuesday evening.
The ANO chief said Mr. Zeman had been very surprised that a prospective minority coalition with the Social Democrats, which could have been supported by the Communists, had fallen through last week.
Some ANO representatives are opposed to entering a government involving the anti-migrant Freedom and Direct Democracy. Mr. Babiš said party leaders would discuss how to proceed at a meeting on Thursday.
ANO won 78 mandates in the 200-member Chamber of Deputies in elections in October but have so far failed to create a majority administration.
A team of Czech and American scientists are working on a new method of
fighting cancer. It involves removing amino acid glutamine, which serves as
fuel for them, from cancer cells. The results are so promising that a US
investor has put around CZK 800 million into the project.
The research is being carried out by scientists from the Institute of Organic Chemistry and Biochemistry at the Czech Academy of Sciences and Johns Hopkins University in Baltimore. Clinical trials are due to begin next year, the Academy of Sciences announced on Tuesday.