The government and representatives of the automotive industry have signed a
memorandum aimed at making it easier for Czech Republic-based producers to
develop new technologies and keep step with overseas manufacturers.
Czech Prime Minister Bohuslav Sobotka said that securing the future of the auto industry would have a marked impact on the Czech economy and employment.
The memorandum centres on the areas of electric vehicles, fully and partly self-driving vehicles and digitalisation.
Pavel Telička has severed ties with ANO, the party for which he was
elected as a member of the European Parliament, the website E15.cz reported
The website cited ANO boss Andrej Babiš, with whom Mr. Telička, who is not a party member, has previously had disagreements on policy.
The MEP stepped down as ANO’s foreign affairs spokesperson earlier this year, saying he had received no feedback on his contributions to the party’s foreign policy programme. Mr. Telička said in August he had no information as regards the party’s foreign policy direction.
The cabinet has rejected a proposal from ANO to abrogate a memorandum on
the mining of lithium signed last week with Australia’s European Metals
Holdings Company. However, the Social Democrat foreign minister, Lubomír
Zaorálek, said the government had agreed a measure aimed at boosting the
state’s rights to mine other materials.
ANO say the memorandum signed by the Social Democrat-controlled Ministry of Industry sells out the national interest. They warn it could lead to the Czech Republic being involved in an international arbitration case that could cost billions of crowns.
European Metals intends to mine the in-demand mineral at Cínovec in North Bohemia.
The funeral has taken place in Prague of the internationally-renowned
harpsichordist Zuzana Růžičková, who died two weeks ago at the age of
90. The Plzeň-born musician and Holocaust survivor brought the harpsichord
to new audiences around the world.
Zuzana Růžičková was a lifelong devotee of the music of Bach and recorded his complete works for keyboard, a 20-CD set that was rereleased at the start of the year to mark her 90th birthday.
The Czech government has approved the country’s involvement in
preparations for greater cooperation in European defence as part of the
Permanent Structured Cooperation (PESCO) structure.
The state secretary for European affairs, Aleš Chmelař, told journalists on Wednesday that the PESCO would formally get underway in December. Officials say the initiative on cooperation will allow for more efficient use of defence budgets.
The government also rubber-stamped Prime Minister Bohuslav Sobotka's mandate for a European Union summit in Brussels at the end of next week.
Russian politicians have welcomed comments made by Czech President Miloš
Zeman on Crimea at the Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe,
Czech Television reported. The Czech head of state said Ukraine should seek
financial compensation for the loss of Crimea and called for the lifting of
sanctions against Russia.
The chairman of the Duma’s International Affairs Committee, Leonid Slutsky, said he welcomed Mr. Zeman’s recognition of the connection between Russia and Crimea as a fait accompli. Mr. Slutsky’s counterpart in the Russian upper house, Konstantin Kosachev, said Mr. Zeman said out loud what other European politicians were thinking.
Ukraine’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs has expressed indignation at Mr. Zeman’s words, while Czech government members have said his comments were at odd with the country’s official foreign policy.
The management of carmakers Škoda Auto have reassured the Czech prime
minister, Bohuslav Sobotka, that they will do all they can to keep jobs in
the Czech Republic. There has been speculation that Volkswagen, which owns
Škoda, could transfer part of its production to Germany from other
Mr. Sobotka said he had received the reassurances after a meeting with representatives of the automobile industry on Wednesday.
His words were echoed by Škoda Auto CEO Bernhard Maier, who said the Czech Republic was the heart and home of the company and would remain so.
Mr. Maier said the carmaker was currently looking to increase production capacity to keep up with worldwide demand.
Thirty-one percent of those planning to vote in January’s presidential
election would give their backing to the incumbent Miloš Zeman, suggests a
poll by the CVVM agency. Academic Jiří Drahoš placed second in the
survey on 18 percent, followed by businessman and lyricist Michal Horáček
on 14 percent.
Over one-quarter of those planning to go to the ballot boxes said they had not yet decided on whom to give their vote.
The presidential election follows a two-round system, with the first two in the first round going into a run-off.
Prime Minister Bohuslav Sobotka says statements made by President Miloš
Zeman at the Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe contradict
Czech foreign policy. Mr. Zeman questioned the effectiveness of sanctions
against Russia and said Ukraine should seek financial compensation from
Moscow for the annexation of Crimea, which he called a fait accompli.
Mr. Sobotka said, however, that the Czech Republic defended respect for international law and that the sanctions against Russia were linked to the fulfilling of the Minsk accords.
The Czech foreign minister, Lubomír Zaorálek, also said that Mr. Zeman was going against the country’s foreign policy. Changing borders and breaching international agreements were not something that Prague could not respond to, he said.