Four Skoda Auto managers have reportedly been dismissed without warning, according to the internet news site idnes. According to the news source they include the head of sales in the Czech Republic and the head of customer services. A Skoda spokesman confirmed the report, saying all four had been denied entry to the company headquarters and were officially “on leave”. Neither the company nor the four managers have commented on the development.
The Prague Public Transportation company (DPP) is around eight billion crowns in debt and on the verge of bankruptcy, the capital’s mayor Tomáš Hudeček said in an interview for Czech Television on Thursday evening. According to Mr. Hudeček, the main problem is a contract the company signed with Škoda Transportation in 2006 for 250 new trams to be delivered over 12 years, which is increasing the DPP’s debt by 2.3 billion crowns each year. The company says that they have encountered technical problems with all of the new 15T trams that were delivered so far, and have filed some 800 complaints with Škoda. If DPP fails to renegotiate the contract within the next six months, it will have to face major restructuring, according to the mayor.
The French firm Areva has filed a lawsuit against its exclusion from a multi-billion dollar tender to expand the Temelín nuclear power plant, a spokeswoman for a court in Brno said. The company’s bid was rejected by the plant’s operator, ČEZ, over alleged failures to meet the tender’s conditions. In July, the Czech anti-monopoly office rejected Areva’s appeal against that decision but the French firm says its exclusion was unjustified. Two other bidders – the US-Japanese firm Westinghouse and a Russian-led consortium Mir 1200 – remain in the tender whose winner should be announced next year.
Current AffairsPolitical analyst on Merkel victory: continuity in Germany is good news for the Czech Republic
Czech Prime Minister Jiří Rusnok on Monday joined European and world leaders in congratulating German Chancellor Angela Merkel on her party’s third successive election victory. The election result spells continuity both for Germany and the EU, and commentators in the Czech Republic see it as a highly positive development. Jakub Janda, deputy director of the European Values think tank, gave Radio Prague his take on CDU’s election victory. More
The vast majority of parties who have a realistic chance of winning seats in the lower house in October’s general elections are not against the completion of the Temelín nuclear plant assuming that it is safe and affordable. Only the Greens and Senator Tomio Okamura’s Dawn of Direct Democracy party are against the plan to build two more nuclear reactors at Temelín, citing safety reasons and pointing out that the cost of building Temelín’s first two reactors was double the amount originally projected. A final decision on the plant’s completion is expected in late 2014 or early 2015.
Czech households’ electricity bills will be lower next year as the country’s dominant electricity producer ČEZ has announced it will slash its prices, and its rivals are expected to follow suit. ČEZ said that its most popular tariff will be 15 percent cheaper, and it has also offered its clients a two-year fixed tariff at an even lower price. More
The Czech-based carmaker Škoda Auto revealed the pricing of its new Spaceback model at the Frankfurt motor show on Tuesday. The basic model Spackback Fresh will cost some 270,000 crowns, or around 14,000 US dollars. The car producer has also began accepting orders for the new model which will go on sale in early October in the Czech Republic and other European countries.
Expert analysis commissioned by Germany’s opposition Green Party, has questioned the safety of the Temelín nuclear power plant in the Czech Republic. The latest issue of the German weekly Der Spiegel reported on the matter. According to the magazine, the study cast doubt on the quality of welds between Temelín’s pressure vessel and the surrounding cooling system, arguing that their quality was not well-documented or that existing documentation contained mistakes. The matter has been raised before and Czech experts found no defects in construction. Germany’s environment minister, Peter Altmaier, according to the publication, also saw no reason to press for additional tests at the Czech plant, earning him criticism from opponents of nuclear energy in Germany.
A group of German anti-nuclear activists staged protests against the Temelin nuclear power plant at three border crossings with the Czech Republic on Saturday. According to the DPA news agency the protests took place at Saska Kamenice/Chemnitz, Amberg and the German town of Marktredwitz, located some 20 kms west of Cheb. The demonstrators called on the Czech authorities to close down the south Bohemian power plant and protested against plans for its expansion by another two nuclear reactors by 2025. The Czech side is still in the process of considering bids and it is not certain that the project will go ahead as planned.