Prime Minister Andrej Babiš on Monday outlined his government’s
innovation strategy for coming decade. Speaking at a conference at
Liechtenstein Palace in Prague, the prime minister said the main goal was
for the country to move towards final products and creating greater added
value, which would benefit employees, companies and the state. He said his
ambition was to see the Czech Republic in the first European league of
The opposition has criticized the prime minister for failing to support this trend in the past. In 2018 the Czech Republic dropped out of the list of 25 most innovative countries.
The region of Hradec Králové is seeking to get Vamberk bobbin lace a
place on the UNESCO Intangible Cultural Heritage list. The Czech Republic
is expected to make a nomination before the end of the month.
The town of Vamberk has been known for its exquisite lace production since the 17th century and the first school of bobbin lace opened there in 1899.
Among the Czech items already on the list are The Ride of the Kings, a colourful festival celebrated in just four Moravian villages in the spring, the Czech craft of indigo dyeing with block printing (modrotisk) or the art of Czech puppetry.
The British liquidator of New World Resources (NWR) is threatening to sue
the Czech state in connection to it taking over the coal miner OKD,
formerly a part of the energy company, the business daily Hospodářské
A regional Czech court in October 2017 approved the reorganisation of OKD as proposed by its management and approved by creditors. Two months later, the European Commission approved the takeover by state-owned company Prisko, which paid CZK 80 million for OKD’s mining assets. Appeals by NWR and others against the OKD reorganisation plan were rejected by a Czech court in June 2018.
A partner at NWR’s liquidator, Jenner & Block, has now said in a letter to Prisko, taken to be a pre-litigation challenge, that OKD’s mining business was in effect illegally nationalised, resulting in damages of hundreds of million of euro against NWR, according to Hospodářské noviny, which has seen a copy of the letter.
OKD creditors have filed claims of over CZK 20 billion in court, but the administrator has rejected the lion’s share of the claims. OKD continues to mine coal and employs around 9,500 people.
Prague City Hall has agreed to start negotiating with Zdena Mašín about
the possibility of exhuming her mother’s remains from a mass grave in
Prague’s Ďáblice cemetary. The city hall earlier ruled out the
possibility in view of the complications of exhuming remains from a mass
Zdena Mašín, sister of the Mašín brothers, who dramatically escaped from Czechoslovakia in the early 1950s, requested the exhumation so as to be able to give her mother a dignified burial.
Her mother Zdena Mašínová was a freedom fighter jailed by the Nazis and later by the Communists. She was convicted of espionage and treason in a communist show trial and later moved from jail to a labour camp where she died in 1956.
A Visegrad Four summit in Israel has been cancelled after Poland announced
it would not be attending the meeting over a diplomatic row with Israel.
Czech Prime Minister Andrej Babiš said just hours before his scheduled departure for Israel that the summit would be replaced by bilateral talks. In addition to talks with Israeli officials the Czech prime minister will pay a visit to the Czech House in Jerusalem and lay a wreath at the World Holocaust Remembrance Centre Yad Vashem.
Polish Prime Minister Mateusz Morawiecki cancelled his participation at the summit after media reported remarks by Israel's prime minister suggesting Polish complicity in the Holocaust. Although Israel insists that the prime minister’s words were misinterpreted, and he had only referred to individuals, the row has deepened and Poland said on Monday that no Polish representative would be travelling to Israel for the summit.
Over a decade since one of the worst railway accidents in Czech history,
the attempt to bring those responsible for the tragedy to justice is back
at square one, the news site Novinky.cz reports.
In August 2008, a bridge undergoing reconstruction in Studénka, northern Moravia, collapsed onto railway tracks minutes before an international express train ploughed into the debris. Eight people died in the accident and 95 passengers were injured, some partly handicapped for life.
On Monday, only four of the ten defendants – absolved of guilt in an early trial – were in attendance. The appeals court hearing began with lawyers objecting strongly to the presiding judge calling for testimony from experts, as a wide range of opinions as to the cause have already been heard.
Earlier judges ruled there was insufficient proof to hold any of the defendants responsible for the tragedy through negligence or otherwise.
Czech banking clients have become a target of new malware on Google
Play’s Word Translator, according to Eset, Czech Republic.
The IT security company says there were over 10,000 downloads before the malware was removed. Half of the security breach incidents were reportedly registered in the Czech Republic, 40 percent in Poland and less than five percent in Italy, Mexico and Australia.
Prime Minister Andrej Babiš was re-elected chairman of the ANO party he
founded on Sunday as, running unopposed.
Jaroslav Faltýnek was reelected first deputy chairman and faced no
opponent ahead of the party congress vote.
Mr Babiš received 206 votes out of 238 delegates present at the national assembly. Thirteen delegates voted against him and 19 abstained. In the last party congress, he received 195 votes out of 210 delegates, and in 2015 was elected unanimously.
As for Mr Faltýnek, two candidates for the first deputy chair post withdrew their candidacies in the eleventh hour. He received 190 votes, or roughly 80 percent of the 237 delegates present.
The two ANO party leaders have consistently been ranked the country’s most popular politicians in polls of eligible voters over the past six months.
Total assets of the Czech Republic amounted to 5.2 trillion crowns at the
end of 2017, up 1.3 percent year on year, according to consolidated
financial statements published by the Ministry of Finance. As an accounting
entity, the country posted a profit of about 181 billion crowns last year,
up 43 percent in annual terms.
The consolidated financial statements provide information on the financial situation and performance of all entities of the state administration and self-government of the Czech Republic as if it were a single economic unit.
Included therein are 18,138 units, including ministries and other authorities, regions, municipalities, health insurance companies and significant holdings held by the state administration and local governments.