Unemployment in the Czech Republic rose to 2.9 percent in December, up from
2.6 percent in November, according to data released by the Czech Labour
Office on Thursday.
Despite the rise, it is the lowest figure for the period of December since 1996. According to the statistics, there are currently 215,500 people seeking employment.
The lowest unemployment rate was in Prague, with 1.9 percent, while the highest number of unemployed, 4.4 percent, was registered in the region of Moravia-Silesia.
In his traditional Christmas message to the nation, President Miloš Zeman began as usual on a positive note – highlighting the country’s economic successes – before turning to what he views as problematic areas. In a 16-minute televised address otherwise void of religious symbolism, Zeman also branded himself a “climate heretic” and urged Czechs to think for themselves rather than follow “false prophets”.
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.
Unemployment in the Czech Republic remained at 2.6 percent in November, the
same as the previous month, the Czech Labour Office announced on Monday.
The number of jobless increased by 771 to 197,289, which is the lowest figure for the month since 1996, while the number of vacancies increased to 339,000. Last November, unemployment stood at 2.8 percent.
The lowest rate of unemployment, 1.8 percent, is in the Pardubice region, which is followed by Prague with 1.9 percent.
Czech prisons are crowded with people serving multiple sentences. According to a new survey carried out by Charles University’s Faculty of Law, nearly fifty percent of prisoners in the Czech Republic are currently serving at least two sentences. The study also points out that many Czechs spend years behind bars for repeated petty criminal offences.
The Czech Republic is one of the countries with the largest gender pay gap in the EU. On average, women earn a fifth less than men, and the annual difference exceeds one month's earnings. In an effort to combat this discrimination, the Ministry of Labour has launched a project called “22% to equality”, in reference to the difference in female and male incomes. The project involves comprehensive research, but also a web payroll calculator or an “equal pay program” for employers.