Daily news summary Daily news summary

04-04-2018

Czech justice minister says alleged Russian hacker represented significant security risk

Czech justice minister Robert Pelikan has said the alleged Russian hacker Yevgenij Nikulin was judged by local security services to be a major security risk in the Czech Republic.

Speaking on Czech Radio Wednesday, Pelikan said that there was no reason he delay his extradition to the United States as soon as possible. Pelikan did not want to detail the precise risks but said that there significant interests that did not want to see him handed over to the US authorities.

The decision to extradite Nikulin was taken March 30 after legal procedures in the Czech Republic were completed. Both Russia and the US had asked for his extradition.

Nikulin is accused in the US of hacking a series of social sites and corporations, including LinkedIn. He was detained in Prague in October 2016 after a tip off from US authorities.

Czech Cabinet agrees to pave way for collective legal actions

The Czech government has agreed to change its legal system so that collective actions can be launched in the future.

At the moment there is no room in the country’s legal framework for such actions to be brought which sets the Czech Republic apart from most European states.

Common actions are frequently brought in other countries in cases such as over mass transport accidents and failures by multinationals such as Volkswagen’s dieselgate affair.

The current government promised to introduce legislation to make such actions possible. At the moment only the basic intention to introduce the legislation has been outlined by the Ministry of Justice. It expects to table detailed plans by the first quarter of next year which can be put to parliament.

Prague signs deal for metro mobile coverage by 2022

Prague’s municipal owned transport authority has signed an agreement with a consortium of phone operators to introduce mobile phone coverage in its entire metro network, including underground sections, by 2022.

The 20 year deal call for the operators to pay 120 million crowns during the first 10 years of the system’s operation.

Coverage will be introduced first on eight stations on the ‘C’ line going south between Muzeum and Roztyly stations. Work there should be completed by the end of October.

Czech president visits Slovakia for first foreign trip following re-election

Czech president Miloš Zeman departs for Slovakia on Wednesday for his first official foreign visit after his re-election.

Zeman will travel to Poprad, the home town of Slovak counterpart Andrej Kiska. The main events take place Thursday with meetings with Kiska and recently installed Slovak prime minister Peter Pellegrini.

Zeman and his wife Ivana return to the Czech Republic on Friday.

Czech tourism earnings climb to 3.0 of GDP

Czech earnings from the tourism sector amounted to 3.0 percent of total Gross Domestic Product in 2016 with around 231,000 people employed in it according to the Czech Statistical Office.

Total tourism earnings rose by almost 9.0 percent over the year to 272 billion crowns. That is the highest level since calculations for the sector started in 2003, the office said.

Foreign visitors to the Czech Republic accounted for 58 percent of the overall turnover.

Czech employment rate advances to 74.7 in February

The employment for the Czech population aged between 15 and 64 reached 74.7 percent in February.

That’s a jump of 1.4 percentage points compared with the situation a year earlier. The male employment rate stood at 81.7 percent with the female level at 67.5 percent.

The overall employment rate in January was 74.5 percent.

Czech public finance surplus at 1.59 PCT of GDP in 2017

Czech public finances ended 2017 with a surplus of 80.6 billion crowns. That represents 1.59 percent of Czech Gross Domestic Product (GDP).

The latest figures is almost double the surplus of 2016 when it represented 0.73 percent of GDP. Finances were in deficit in 2015. The Czech National Bank estimates that this year public finances will improve further with the surplus rising to 1.6 percent of GDP.

Last year public sector revenues rose by 6.5 percent, outstripped a 4.2 percent increase in spending.

Ex-PSG and Newcastle defender Rozehnal retires from football

Former football international David Rozehnal has announced his retirement, the newspaper Mladá fronta Dnes reported. The central defender, who is 37, said he was leaving the Belgian club Ostende for family reasons. He had been offered a contract by the Czech club Sigma Olomouc, where his career began, but turned it down.

Rozehnal played for such clubs as Paris Saint-Germain, Newcastle United and Lazio. He made 60 appearances for the Czech national side between 2004 and 2009 and scored one goal.

Press: Social Democrats want Okamura MPs removed from top committee posts

If ANO and the Social Democrats form a government, MPs from Tomio Okamura’s Freedom and Direct Democracy could be stripped of top positions on parliamentary commissions and committees, Právo reported. The newspaper said the Social Democrats were insisting that the party lose chairmanships of three such bodies.

Právo said that ANO were likely to agree to these demands if they strike a coalition agreement with the Social Democrats.

The daily said the removal of Mr. Okamura’s people would reduce the likelihood of ANO getting around the Social Democrats on some issues by teaming up with Freedom and Direct Democracy. The socialist party are also disquieted by inflammatory comments made by members of the latter grouping.

Weather

Thursday is likely to be cloudy with showers across most of the country. Top daytime temperatures should range between 13 and 19 degrees Celsius.

04-04-2018