Petrochemical giant Unipetrol has prolonged its contract with Croatian
company Jadranski Naftovod until 2021. The later controls the Adria oil
pipeline running through the Balkans.
Unipetrol’s general director Krzysztof Zdziarski said that the Adria is an alternative for the Czech Republic – and Central Europe as a whole – in case of a cut in oil supplies from the Druzhba pipeline which runs from Russia into Central Europe.
Unipetrol is the Czech Republic’s only petroleum processor and also owns the country’s largest petrol station chain, Benzina. The company hopes the Adria pipeline will supply its refineries in Kralupy and Litvínov.
The Czech priest and theologian Tomáš Halík met with Pope Francis at the
Vatican on Wednesday and presented him with a letter praising the Pope for
his efforts to reform the Catholic Church and urging the establishment of a
clear future vision.
The letter has been supported by nearly 75,000 signatories including 2,500 theology professors and public figures from across the world. Mr. Halík told the news server aktualne.cz that opinions on the current role of the Catholic Church were gathered from all signatories and are now being published in multiple languages, including Czech. He also said that an intercontinental network of theologians ready to devise and implement reform impulses has been established.
The 71-year-old Templeton Prize winner has been actively involved in theological doctrine within the Catholic Church since the 1990s.
Industrial regions, which feature large communities of foreign workers will
be regularly policed by joint patrols made up of policemen from the Czech
Republic, Slovakia and Poland, Interior Minister Jan Hamáček told
journalists at a press conference on Wednesday after signing a memorandum
of cooperation with the Region of Central-Bohemia that seeks to combat
problems associated with foreign workers in industrial zones.
According to Mr. Hamáček tens of Slovak and Polish policemen will undertake work visits in cities such as Mladá Boleslav and Plzen. Such cooperation has shown itself useful in the past, the interior minister said and he is now discussing details of implementing such project again with his Polish and Slovak counterparts.
The growth of the Czech economy provides the opportunity to deepen
structural reforms, the European Commission advised Prague in its annual
analysis of economic and social affairs in the Czech Republic. According to
the commissions study data, the relatively low rate of social inequality
and growing quality of life is masking a growing regional divide in the
Based on its findings, the commission advises focus should be put on investments in education and local innovations, while growth potential in the more backward regions of the country should be boosted by digital and transport infrastructure.
NÚKIB, the Czech Republic’s National Cyber and Information Security
Agency has been building a web of specialised ‘cyber attaches’ together
with the Ministry of Foreign Affairs in three strategic foreign missions,
daily Lidové Noviny reports. These specialists have so far been posted in
Brussels, Washington and Tel-Aviv.
Their activities include consultation and information sharing with members of foreign intelligence services.
President Miloš Zeman has officially proposed to the Senate that Charles
University prorector Aleš Gerloch becomes a Constitutional Court judge.
With three Senate parties already criticising Mr. Gerloch’s close
relationship with the president, it is unclear whether the nomination will
pass in the upper house.
Earlier in February the president said on TV Barrandov that senators would be ‘wretches’ if they were more interested in who had proposed a nomination rather than the judge himself. However, many parties are uneasy about the relationship between Mr. Gerloch and the president, especially after a January exposé by the weekly Respekt cited judges complaining that members of the president’s staff were trying to influence them.
The Senate has passed a bill proposed by the government that seeks to
protect the rights of British citizens in the country in case of a no-deal
Brexit. The legislation seeks to create an ‘intermediate period’
lasting until the end of 2020 during which British nationals will retain
the same rights as EU citizens. The bill is now expected to be signed by
According to the statistics of the Ministry of Interior there are currently around 8,000 British citizens living in the Czech Republic, 5,000 of whom are employed.
The European Global Navigation Satellite Systems Agency (GSA) which runs
the EU’s satellite navigation programmes will undergo an expansion at its
headquarters in Prague. This will include hiring dozens of new staff and is
likely to be a further boost to the Czech space industry.
Representatives of the EU Commission, the European Parliament and
individual member states agreed to proceed with the plan in Brussels on
Tuesday. The exact amount for the GSA’s increased budget, which was
proposed by the EU Commission last summer, is yet to be agreed upon.
Currently EU member states are responsible for a third of the world’s satellite production and their combined space industry currently employs nearly a quarter of a million people.
The Czech Republic’s Food Banks organisation has opened its first kitchen
and begun offering cooking lessons, Czech Television reported. The charity
says that many impoverished people don’t eat healthily and don’t know
how to handle the foodstuffs it provides to them.
On Tuesday professional chefs provided instruction at the Food Banks’ first cooking course. It plans to offer free lessons to single parents, seniors and the unemployed once a month.
Last year the organisation redistributed foods at a value of CZK 225 million. A law introduced in January requires large outlets to provide all their waste foodstuffs to the Food Banks.