Officers from the country’s National Centre for Combatting Organized
Crime have proposed filing criminal charges against a former employee of
the Czech Export Bank who is believed to be responsible for two suspect
loans afforded to companies between 2007 and 2010 which resulted in damages
to the tune of 1.5 billion crowns. If charged and convicted the man could
face up to eight years in jail for abuse of position.
The Czech Export Bank and its mother company, the Export Insurance Company EGAP are still dealing with the effects of big losses incurred between 2007 and 2011 due to a number of dubious contracts, some of which are still under investigation.
One of the most highly-publicized cases was a series of loans to the tune of hundreds of millions of crowns afforded to Chinese companies for which five former managers have been charged.
A recent conference on business and investment opportunities in Africa organized by the Czech Foreign Ministry, focused on innovative forms of investment and modern technologies. Titled “Creative, Innovative and Participative Africa” the event brought together ambassadors and business representatives, underlining Czech interest in establishing new partnerships and projects on the African continent. I spoke to Deputy Foreign Minister Martin Tlapa about the opportunities opening up, the risks involved and what the Czech government is doing to help
The state export insurance and guarantee provider, EGAP, has said it is relaxing what has been effectively a freeze on export help to Ukraine and Belarus. Help to all but the smallest projected stopped to Ukraine in February 2014 due to the conflict in the east of the country. Help to Belarus was curbed due to the economic situation and the poor payment record of local companies. That has improved, according to the Czech agency. Although export help will now be offered, the two countries are still regarded as high risk with an annual ceiling put on the amounts of credits and guarantees offered.