The state is set to collect CZK 1.6 billion from Prague Airport this year.
The Chairman of the Board of Directors Václav Řehoř told Czech Radio
that this was a logical consequence of the economic results of the airport
which have been developing “above expectations“. He said that
extraordinary revenues, such as the sales of air craft, played a role in
the increased profits. Last year, the state collected only CZK 350 million,
while in 2017 it was CZK 2.5 billion.
The airport is planning to invest tens of billions of crowns in the next few years. This will include a CZK 16 billion expansion of its second terminal, as well as a new parallel runway.
A shooting in the University Hospital in Ostrava has left seven people dead
and a further three injured. At around 7am on Tuesday, a man started firing
at the heads and chests of people in the hospital's traumatology
waiting room. Four people died immediately, a further two in intensive
care. All of the victims are reported to have been patients. A Rapid
Deployment Unit of the police was soon dispatched to the hospital was
placed under lockdown.
The suspect, a construction engineer with a criminal record identified as Citrad V., used an illegally held 9mm handgun. He then fled in a grey Renault before shooting himself in the head and later dying in hospital. His employer told Czech Radio that the man believed himself to be very ill and frequently visited medical stations.
Prime minister Andrej Babiš and Health Minister Adam Vojtěch arrived at the hospital later in the day. Mr. Vojtěch has also set up a special crisis team. President Milos Zeman, has offered his "deep condolences" and is in contact with the interior minister, according to his spokesman. Other politicians have also been expressing their condolences. Police President Jan Švejdar thanked policemen for their "rapid and professional" reaction.
The Ostrava hospital shooting is the second most tragic in the history of the Czech Republic. In February 2015, a man in a restaurant in Uherský Brod shot eight people before taking his own life.
Slavia Prague lost 1:2 against German side Borussia Dortmund in Tuesday’s
last round of Champions’ League group stage matches. Dortmund’s Jadon
Sancho put the home team in the lead in the 10th minute, but Slavia’s
Tomáš Souček managed to equalise just before the end of the first half.
Despite chances, Slavia was not able to put another goal in the net and
Julian Brandt scored the winner for Dortmund in the 61st minute.
Slavia finished bottom in the table, five points behind third placed Inter Milan, losing four games and drawing two. However, the Czech team’s performance has been viewed by many Slavia fans as dignified in view of the elite teams the Prague side had to face. Meanwhile, Dortmund’s victory means the team has qualified for the knockout phase along with Barcelona.
Prime Minister Andrej Babiš did not resolve his conflict of interest by
putting the Agrofert conglomerate he founded into trust funds, watchdog
Transparency International told journalists on Monday.
An EU audit into the issue, leaked last week, concluded there was a potential conflict of interest between Babiš’s position as prime minister and his continuing links to his former businesses.
Transparency International said Babiš knows full well what Agrofert companies are doing and can take decisions as head of state benefitting them, noting his wife sits on a trust fund board, and his own media report on the activities of his businesses.
Minister of Defence Lubomír Metnar (for ANO) is due to finalise the Czech
Army purchase of twelve US helicopters on Thursday following talks with his
American counterpart, Mark Esper.
The ministry has agreed to buy eight utility UH-1Y Venom helicopters and four AH-1Z attack Viper helicopters from Bell for 14.6 billion crowns. They are due for delivery in 2023.
Bell was chosen over a cheaper option due to its offer of greater cooperation with Czech firms, especially state-owned LOM Praha, which maintains Soviet-era Mi-24 helicopters.
Metnar said last month the contract includes equipment, ammunition, spare parts and training of the personnel and best meets Czech needs.
Foreign Minister Tomáš Petříček and Czech ambassadors abroad this week
are hosting breakfast meetings with human rights and democracy campaigners
to honour a famous French gesture of support for Czechoslovak dissidents
The meetings commemorate a famous breakfast at Prague’s Embassy in Paris on December 9, 1988, when then French president François Mitterrand held talks with Czechoslovak dissidents in a significant gesture of support.
Mitterrand had invited dissidents and Charter 77 signatories, including Václav Havel, to the French embassy for the meeting during a visit to Czechoslovakia earlier that year.
The French president’s visit helped spur the Czechoslovak regime to grant official permission for an opposition rally to be held on Human Rights Day on December 10, 1988 in Prague's Žižkov district.
Prague City Hall councillors have agreed is conclude a Free Cities Pact
with the other Visegrad Four group capitals aimed at strengthening
The mayors of Prague, Budapest, Bratislava and Warsaw agreed to create the pact on the 30th anniversary of the fall of the Berlin Wall.
The Free Cities Pact calls on signatories to work together to tackle problems such as climate change, housing and social policy, and to promote democratic ideals, human rights, and the rule of law.
Representatives of the V4 capitals are due to sign the pact on December 16 in Hungary. Prague also wants to sign a sister city pact with Vienna, concerning mainly transport, housing and ecological issues.
Despite an anticipated slowdown in Czech economic growth, a record 59
percent of companies plan to pay employees a so-called 13th salary bonus
this year, according to a survey by the Czech Chamber of Commerce (HKČR).
About three-quarters of big companies – those with more than 250 employees – plan to pay a 13th salary at the turn of the year, the survey shows. Almost every second (47 percent) small company – with up to 10 employees – will pay out such a bonus this year.
By comparison, in 2017 fewer than on in three big companies and one in five small ones paid out a 13th salary or “Christmas bonus”. The HKČR estimates this year’s bonuses on average will exceed 34,000 crowns, with the majority ranging from 18,000 to 38,000 crowns.
Some 20,000 people have seen the Venus of Věstonice since the statuette of
a shapely Old Stone Age woman went back on display after a 5-year hiatus,
just under two weeks ago.
The Venus is among the world’s oldest ceramic pieces of art, dating back nearly 30,000 years. The ceramic figure was discovered in South Moravia in 1925 amongst remnants of a fire pit once used by mammoth hunters.
The 11-centimetre high figure – valued at USD 40 million dollars – is usually locked in a museum safe, and a replica stands in its stead. Long queues to see the real thing have formed at the Regional Museum of Olomouc, especially over the past two weekends.