Klaus will veto bill to raise maternal benefits

01-03-2010

The Czech president, Václav Klaus, has said he will veto the reinstatement of full maternity benefits, recently passed by the Chamber of Deputies. Speaking at a press conference for the launch of his new book, Mr Klaus repeated on Monday that he will not sign any bill that would increase the state budget deficit. Left-wing parties helped by the Greens managed to push the benefits through Parliament last week in the face of opposition from the government as well as the centre-right parties. Maternal benefits were reduced in 2009 as part of the government’s austerity package, and the lower-house move to reinstate them will still have to go through the Senate, where the centre-right parties hold a small majority, before reaching Mr Klaus’ desk.