The arrival of American actor Morgan Freeman at the Karlovy Vary Film Festival has made all of today's front pages, and cinemagoers who have failed to make it to the West Bohemian spa resort for the annual film festival can take comfort from reading up on all the latest news and gossip about the films and VIPS in the cultural pages.
For the past couple of weeks, advertisements all over Prague have heralded the opening of a new hypermarket called Cesky sen, or the Czech Dream. The opening was advertised for Saturday, May 31, at the fairground in the Prague quarter of Letnany. But while hundreds of people turned up there expecting to discover their dream hypermarket, they didn't find it.
A mix of headlines on the front pages - Mlada Fronta Dnes leads with a new opinion poll claiming support for Prime Minister Vladimir Spidla has fallen from 75 percent in September to just under half that today. Meanwhile Lidove Noviny says flat prices have risen by 25 percent in the first quarter of this year. And Hospodarske Noviny warns of a brain drain to Brussels as the nation's finest look for new jobs with the European Union.
After a stormy five hour debate in Parliament on Wednesday, the governing coalition voted to dissolve the TV and Radio Council, holding it responsible for the Czech Republic's lost arbitration with the Bermuda based media company CME on the grounds that the state had failed to protect its investment in private TV NOVA. The lost arbitration will cost the Czech Republic over 10 billion crowns and in recent weeks there has been many a heated debate on who is responsible and who should foot the bill.
After months of speculation over the future of a much-needed highway for north-east Moravia, the Czech cabinet has decided to pull the plug on previous plans involving a private construction investor. The cabinet reached the conclusion the highway could be completed faster - and cheaper - by the government alone. Left in the cold: Israeli company Housing & Construction, awarded the contract without tender, something many observers interpreted as controversial from the start.
This week we take a look at SME's, small and medium sized businesses in the Czech Republic and more importantly, some recent initiatives to help this significant component of the economy develop. Also in the program, consumer and business confidence in economy fall in January. The Czech Republic's trade surplus increases. Japan's Furukawa commences building of a new plant in Unhost. Police change founder of bankrupt construction firm, H-Systems, for hundred million crown fraud. And, rail operator, Ceske Drahy, sees the number of passengers down
The cabinet has suspended its discussion of the long-awaited fiscal reform aimed at stopping the growth of the public finance deficit. Pilots working for the Czech national air carrier, Czech Airlines (CSA) have reportedly threatened to go on strike to support their wage demands. U.S. manufacturing conglomerate Honeywell has chosen the Czech city Brno for a planned global design center. Czech internet users will be able to get a broadband connection using the ADSL technology with a 3-month delay in March.
The NATO summit might be well and truly over, but the discussion continues as to what the meeting brought to Prague - good and bad. One person very much in favour of hosting the summit was Martin Jahn, General Director of the CzechInvest agency, which promotes foreign investment in the Czech Republic. We asked Martin how the summit had made the country a more attractive place to do business.
Finally this week, the government has approved a proposal banning tobacco advertising and sponsorship of events by tobacco firms. The proposal comes after parliament approved a similar law in May, only to have the Senate reject it weeks later saying the measure was too broad and should instead focus on protecting children and young people from tobacco products.
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