Czech hard coal miner New World Resources’ OKD unit wants to lay off half of its employees within the next two years. Although the move is not unexpected and the Czech government has been debating ways of softening its social impact, the lay-offs will present a serious problem in a region with a 19.2 percent unemployment rate.
The company Jan Becher- Karlovarská Becherovka which produces the famous Czech herbal liquor Becherovka created in 1807 has received close to one hundred million crowns in compensation for losses suffered during the government-enforced prohibition in 2012. No other company on the market received compensation.
Public tenders are one of the biggest business opportunities in the Czech Republic, and over recent years have been one of the most fraught. It’s estimated that the total Czech market for local councils, regions, state bodies and authorities for goods and services is worth an annual 600 billion crowns. And it’s now just big firms that rely on the work for a substantial part of the turnover, it’s also a lifeline for many small and mid-sized companies as well.
Although the unemployment rate in the Czech Republic is now one of the lowest in Europe –at 6.2 percent- there are still regions where finding work is a problem. Jobs openings are available around the country but the majority of Czechs are not willing to commute to work. The Labour Ministry has now unveiled a plan to change that.
Contrary to expectations, Czech fruit growers achieved very good results last year. Despite the extremely dry and hot summer, the overall fruit harvest increased by 24 percent year-on-year to 188,462 tonnes, which is the best result since 2006. The head of the fruit grower’s union, Martin Ludvík, announced the results this week.
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