The Czech Republic ranks 31st on the ladder of the 2015 World Happiness Report published by the Sustainable Development Solutions Network, an initiative under the United Nations. The placement makes it the happiest country among the post-communist states and puts it ahead of countries such as Spain which ranks 36th and Italy which placed 50. Switzerland tops the happiness ladder, followed by Island and Denmark. The Czech Republic’s former sister state Slovakia ranks 60th. The study bases its rankings on data from the Gallup World Poll and takes into account variables such as real GDP per capita, healthy life expectancy, corruption levels and social freedoms.
The Tabor Zoo which was facing bankruptcy has been sold to a new owner for 16.2 million crowns and should reopen on June 30th ,the ctk news agency reported. The zoo closed to the public at the beginning of the year although its past owner continued to care for the animals. The sale of the animals was averted thanks to the zoo’s creditors who are owed tens of millions of crowns. The zoo’s past owner is expected to stay on in the position of advisor.
The Czech Republic has offered some 60 experts and about ten million crowns to the EU Frontex agency, the Czech Prime Minister Bohuslav Sobotka said on Thursday after arriving in Brussels to attend the EU emergency summit on the migrant crisis in the Mediterranean. Mr Sobotka said he offered to increase the Czech Republic’s contribution to express the country’s solidarity with the refugees. At the same time, he said that the decision on asylum must be made by sovereign governments of the particular EU member states and not by any EU bodies or other EU countries. The Czech Prime Minister also suggested that the summit should decide on a possible operation against people traffickers.
Czech bank GE Money Bank is being put up for sale by its US parent company, General Electric. The general manager of the Czech unit, Sean Morrisey, confirmed that the aim is for the sale to take place within two years. The story of the intended sale was broken by business daily Hospodářské Noviny. GE Money Bank is the sixth largest bank on the Czech market with around one million clients. Its sale could fetch up to 40 billion crowns for its owners, the paper reported.
Adoption of the euro is not a burning issue in the Czech Republic at the moment for most of the population. But for one man, head of state president Zeman, the issue should urgently be ignited and turned into an informed political debate over whether and when the switch from crown to euro should take place.
The Czech economy should grow by around 2.5 percent annually in the coming year, according to a regular Ministry of Finance survey compiling the views of 20 institutions in the field of economics. Gross domestic product should expand by 2.4 percent in 2015, 2.6 percent in the following two years and 2.5 percent in 2018, according to the experts consulted. The Ministry of Finance itself expects growth of 2.7 percent this year.
Some 85 percent of Czechs are opposed to the adoption of the common European currency within the next two years, suggests an opinion poll conducted by the agency Ipsos. Twelve percent are for joining the eurozone in a short time-frame, the survey indicates. University graduates were the group of respondents most likely to be in favour. Prime Minister Bohuslav Sobotka says the nearest possible term for the Czech Republic to adopt the euro is 2020, though his government has no official target date.
Czech entrepreneurs are increasingly investing in companies outside their country’s borders, the business daily Hospodářské noviny reported on Monday, citing a 2014 mergers and acquisitions report by consultants EY. The main reason for the trend is the fact that domestic banks are offering bigger and cheaper loans.
In Business News: Financial assets of Czech households grew at steady six percent rate annually over five years; Czech companies get ready for Shanghai trade fair; confidence survey suggests overwhelming majority of German firms happy with investing in Czech Republic; gold mining could be renewed at a location in the Jeseníky Mountains.
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