News PM Bohuslav Sobotka says committee will continue to monitor restitution

24-07-2014 11:47 | Chris Johnstone

Ongoing problems with the restitution of church property will be resolved by a government committee prime minister Bohuslav Sobotka told the lower house of parliament on Thursday. Sobotka intervened in a debate over the controversial subject called jointly by the Communist Party of Bohemia and Moravia and the Dawn party. The prime minister attacked the deal to compensate churches and religious group for confiscations undertaken by the former Communist regime, saying that mechanism were lacking to check that property was not given back which religious groups had not owned in the first place. Sobotka’s Social Democrat party has attempted to reopen the restitution settlement agreed by the former centre-right coalition government without success.

Social bookmarking

For the daily news summary, available after 8pm CET, click here.

All stories

Betting company Fortuna sees operating profit slump on higher Czech taxes

05-05-2016 08:59 | Chris Johnstone

Betting company Fortuna said it business boomed in the first quarter of the year with the value of bets placed rising by around 26 percent to total around 250 million euros. But operating profit plummeted by around 37 percent to 4.6 million euros. Fortuna, majority owned by the Penta group, said one of the main factors was a steeper betting tax in the Czech Republic. The group operates in the Czech, Slovak, Polish, and Hungarian markets. 

Jiří Stránský to be awarded Arnošt Lustig prize

05-05-2016 08:58 | Chris Johnstone

The Arnošt Lustig prize for 2015 will be awarded to the writer and scenarist Jiří Stránský, The prize is awarded to those contributing to the community through their courage, humanity, or spirit of justice. In past years winners have been bishop Václav Malý and presenter Kamila Moučková. The prize was created in 2011 in honour of the world famous Holocaust survivor and Czech writer who died that year. 

President mulls veto over schools law: report

04-05-2016 18:45 updated | Chris Johnstone

Czech President Miloš Zeman is considering using his veto to block the new school law, his spokesman Jiří Ovčáček said, according to the news agency ČTK. Ovčáček did not give reasons for the president’s possible stance. President Zeman has in the past spoken out against greater steps at schools towards the inclusion of the minority groups and children with various disabilities but this is not covered in the proposed law. It calls for obligatory leaving exams to include mathematics and for all two year olds to be offered places in schools from 2020. The president later announced his veto, arguing that the changes would put a heavy financial burden on some local councils. 

Trading in NWR suspended on LSE and to suspended in Prague

04-05-2016 18:44 updated | Chris Johnstone

Trading in New World Resources, the company owning the mining company OKD, were suspended from trading on the London Stock Exchange on Wednesday. The ČTK news agency reported that NWR is attempting to get trading suspended on the Prague and Warsaw exchanges as well. The Prague excahgne later said trading would be suspended Thursday. Shares in NWR lost around 20% of their value on the Prague exchange at opening on Wednesday where they were trading at 8 halers each. 

European Commission immigrant proposal condemned by V4 countries

04-05-2016 16:57 | Chris Johnstone

Representatives of the Visegrad Four countries meeting in Prague have condemned a European Commission proposal aimed at fine tuning its system for sharing out immigrants. The new proposal includes cash penalties on countries which fail to take their share of the overall quota. Czech foreign minister Lubomír Zaorálek said such a proposal dividing EU countries should not have been tabled. His Hungarian counterpart Peter Szijjarto said the proposal was inadmissible and amounted to blackmail. Polish and Slovak ministers also criticized the proposal. The Visegrad ministers also attacked the Commission proposal to abolish Turkish visas, saying the country should not be given favourable treatment compared with others. Central European counties argue most immigrants don’t want to come to their states. The Commission says the latest proposed measures are about solidarity. 

V4 countries meet with Eastern Partnership counterparts

04-05-2016 16:44 updated | Chris Johnstone

Foreign Ministers from the Visegrad Four, currently headed by the Czech Republic, met with their counterparts from the so-called Eastern Partnership in Prague on Wednesday. The ČTK agency said the aim is to discuss the future evolution of the grouping composed of Armenia, Azerbaijan, Belarus, Georgia, Moldova, and Ukraine. Some bilateral talks were already held on Tuesday. The meeting is also being attended by the European Commissioner for Enlargement Johannes Hahn and diplomats from Germany, Sweden, and the Netherlands. The Eastern Partnership countries are being offered closer economic and diplomatic ties with the EU but not membership of the economic and political bloc.The Visegrad ministers repeated strong support for the partnership and a woillingness to deepen it further. 

Threat of almost 2 billion crown compensation by Plzeň rejected by court

04-05-2016 14:01 | Chris Johnstone

A court has ruled that the city of Plzeň does not have to pay a development company more than 1.85 billion crowns. The ruling was given Wednesday that compensation does not have to be offered to the company Amadeus whose plans for a large commercial centre in the city were rejected by a local referendum three years ago. The developer lodged a demand for compensation for the thwarted Corso America project in January 2015. It has a similar demand for compensation over a similar project with the city of Ostrava. 

Czech ice hockey squad flies to Moscow for worlds

04-05-2016 12:06 | Chris Johnstone

In ice hockey, the Czech squad departed for the world championship in Moscow and St. Petersburg on Wednesday. The championships begin on Friday. Czech coach Vladimír Vůjtek admitted at Prague airport that the squad is different from what he might have hoped for because some players were unavailable but that the Czechs were still capable of challenging for medals. The Czech team lost 3:0 to Canada in the last warm up game before the championships on Tuesday night. 

Lower house backs putting CZExit referenda on agenda of lower house session

04-05-2016 12:05 | Chris Johnstone

A large number of lower house members of parliament surprising backed a motion to debate a Czech referendum on leaving the European Union on Tuesday, the daily Mladá Fronta Dnes reported Wednesday. It said 96 out of 169 members backed putting the issue on the agenda for debate this session. The move was even backed by some lawmakers from the governing Social Democrat and ANO parties, it reported. 

PM says aim is to stabilize situation around OKD mining company

04-05-2016 12:03 | Chris Johnstone

The Prime Minister Bohuslav Sobotka, leaders of the other two government coalition parties, Ministers for Industry and Trade, Labour and Social Affairs, and Justice met on Wednesday to discuss the situation surrounding the hard coal mining company OKD. The mining company, which employs around 12,000, on Tuesday filed for insolvency with debts of around 17 billion crowns. Sobotka said later the government wants to stabilize the situation around OKD and ensure operations can continue. One of the main issues now being focused on is who the court will name as insolvency manager. This could have a major influence on how the company is managed in the interim before its final fate is resolved. Minister of Justice Robert Pelikán told Czech Television on Tuesday that the government wanted some say in the naming of the insolvency manager. 


Most Popular


May 2016


April 2016


March 2016


Complete archive

Related articles


Latest programme in English