In Business News: Prague is set to get its second international airport within three years; after years of letting people go, Czech banks are now hiring again; the famous Czech piano-maker Petrof has avoided bankruptcy after a legal challenge from an American distributor; the Environment Ministry has given the green light for the cultivation of genetically modified flax; total Czech fuel consumption had grown by almost 40 percent since the year 2000; and the consumption of meat has fallen by 17 percent since 1989.
The world renowned piano manufacturer Petrof could face liquidation because of a legal dispute with the company's exclusive distributor in the United States, TV Nova reported. Earl Matzkin says the Hradec Kralove based firm owes him money; Petrof, meanwhile, says it owes Mr Matzkin nothing and accuses him of wanting to produce pianos under the Petrof brand in Asia. A court in Hradec Kralove is due to rule on the matter on Tuesday. The company was founded in 1864 and produces 7,000 pianos a year.
The sound of jazz by a skilled trio of musicians greets visitors at one of the most highly regarded events of the season: the awarding on Thursday of the Czech national prize for the year's outstanding design. Traditionally the event, organised by the Design Centre in cooperation with the Quality Council of the Czech Republic and titled Excellent Product of the Year - is held at Prague's Bethlehem Chapel, and it is nothing if not prestigious. It draws hundreds of designers as well as government ministers, manufacturers and business insiders to get
Three baby giraffes have died in a stampede as a result of a massive power failure in eastern Bohemia. A spokesperson for the Hradec Kralove Zoo said that the sudden blaze of lights when power was restored threw the animals into a panic and the baby giraffes were trampled in the stampede. The zoo is said to have sustained 400, 000 crowns in damages as a result of the black out. The power cut in eastern Bohemia affected some 180,000 homes and is said to have been the worst in 15 years.
An old saying goes, "in Prague is bliss" but a recent study shows that in fact, Hradec Kralove is the place to live in the Czech Republic. This town located about 100 km east of Prague scored very well on ten quality of life indicators including employment, housing, crime and quality of the environment. In contrast, the city of Louny, placed 60 km north-west of Prague was dubbed the worst place to live.
This week I've come to the east Bohemian town of Hradec Kralove, to the Czech Republic's only solar and ozone observatory, which was established over half a century ago, in 1951. My guide is a physicist named Karel Vanicek, who has been working here since the mid 1970s. Of course ozone depletion is now a well-known problem and I asked Mr Vanicek when he and his colleagues in Hradec first began to notice that the ozone layer was starting to disappear.