Prime Minister Andrej Babiš from the ANO Party which won the elections to
the European Parliament with 21.18 percent of the vote, told reporters on
Monday that the Social Democrats debacle in the European elections would
have no influence on the work of the coalition government.
He said he considered his party’s victory a great success in view of the fact that it had been the target of an intense and vulgar smear campaign from the media and political rivals.
The prime minister refused to comment on the Social Democrats's poor showing in the European elections
The Czech Republic’s total debt amounted to CZK 2.34 trillion at the end
of the first quarter of 2019, up by CZK 161.5 billion in annual terms,
according to the Czech Credit Bureau (CRIF) database.
The volume of non-performing debt fell by CZK 4.1 billion to CZK 32.4 billion. The number of people who had problems making consumer debt payments fell 17 percent year on year. The number of people who failed to pay their housing loans fell by 16 percent.
The average amount of short-term debt “at risk” stood at almost CZK 98,000 at the end of the first quarter of 2019. This concerns debts in which three consecutive monthly instalments were not paid or were declared due by the creditor.
Czech state-controlled power utility ČEZ reportedly plans to sell its
assets in Romania and Turkey, in addition to a previously reported plans to
divest from Bulgaria.
ČEZ chief Daniel Beneš said in an interview with the business daily Hospodářské noviny that the group is also considering selling some assets in Poland. In total, the Prague-listed company hopes to get tens of billions of crowns from the sales.
Shareholders in ČEZ, which is 70 percent owned by the state, would vote on the new strategy at the annual general meeting on June 26, he told the daily.
Proceeds would be used to construct renewable energy assets and new nuclear units as well as to the modernize ČEZ’s distribution network, he said.
The centre-right ANO party of Prime Minister Andrej Babiš, as expected,
won the European Parliament elections.
ANO got 21.2% of the vote (6 seats), the Civic Democrats 14.5% (4 seats), the Pirates 13.95% (3 seats), the alliance between TOP 09 and Mayors and Independents 11.6% (3 seats), and the Christian Democrats 7.2% (2 seats).
The far-right Freedom and Direct Democracy got 9.1% (2 seats) and the largely unreformed Communists 6.9% (1 seat).
ANO's coalition partner, the left-leaning Social Democrats, failed to gain a mandate.
Competing for the 21 mandates were a record 40 parties and movements fielded in total 841 candidates in the Czech Republic. According to the Czech Statistical Office, turnout was 28.7 percent, up from 18.2 percent five years ago.
In the EU as a whole, turnout was above 50 percent, preliminary results show.
The Czech ice hockey team lost to arch-rivals Russia on Sunday night by a
score of 3-2 in sudden death, missing out on a bronze in the IIHF World
Championship in Bratislava.
Both the third period of regulation play and overtime period were scoreless. In the sudden death shootout, no Czech managed to score.
The Czechs scored two goals in the first period – Michal Řepík at 13:41 and Dominik Kubalík at 18:34. The Russians scored one goal in each of the first regulation periods – Mikhail Grigorenko at 13:00 and Artem Anisimov just 00:39 into the second period.
Canada and Finland are competing for the gold in a match later on Sunday night.
The Czech Republic won gold medals at the IIHF hockey Worlds in 1996, 1999, 2000, 2001, 2005, and 2010. When part of Czechoslovakia, the team won another six gold medals.
The results of European Parliament election should be released at 11 p.m.
local time on Sunday.
Votes from all 14,766 constituencies have already been counted, the Czech Statistical Office said. It will publish results after all polls close in other EU countries.
According to the Median agency, the ruling centre-right ANO party should win 22-25 percent of the vote and their junior partner in government, the centre-left Social Democrats, about 5-6 percent.
The opposition Pirates and the Civic Democrats are polling at about 14 percent each, the TOP 09 and Party of Mayors and Independents coalition up to 11 percent, the far-right Freedom and Direct Democracy party 9-10 percent, the Christian Democrats 7-9 percent and the Communists at about 5-6 percent.
There has been a steady drop in the number of foster families, the Ministry
of Labor and Social Affairs said on Sunday.
Last year only 146 families offered to care for a foster child – the fewest since 2015, when independent statistics began being compiled.
The ministry says a burdensome bureaucracy is partly to blame. Children are also stay longer with foster care families than planned, which could deter new prospects.
A work by Czech painter František Kupka, a pioneer of the abstraction
movement and master of symbolism, sold at auction on Sunday for 78 million
The painting, entitled Plochy příčné II (Diagonal Surfaces II), had been in a private collection. The auction house catalogue had estimated the sale price at 40-60 million crowns.
Auctioneers say the painting is a pure example of geometric abstraction and among his most important works, a counterpart of which is in the Czech National Gallery collection in Prague.
The buyer's identity unknown. Kupka's paintings have been the most expensive to be auctioned in Prague for several years now.
The Prague Zoo on Sunday opened a new exhibition featuring one of the
largest wolf spiders ever found in the Czech Republic, a member of largest
species in Europe.
The new wolf spider at the Prague Zoo is about seven centimeters tall. Arachnologist Vladimír Hula, who discovered the female specimen in the Břeclav region, will be on hand to discuss its attributes.
Agile hunters, wolf spiders do not spin webs but rather pounce upon their prey or even chase it over short distances. Some lie in wait in burrows.
Khamoro, the World Roma Festival of music and culture, kicks off on Sunday
evening with a free concert by the band Gipsy Suno in Prague’s Karlín
The annual week-long event is now celebrating its 21st year. Apart from a wide variety of traditional and modern Romany music, the programme features exhibitions, theatrical performances, a fashion show and public discussions.
Khamoro, which means sun in the Roma language, is the largest such festival in the world. It peaks on Saturday with a gala concert featuring Fanfare Ciocarlia (Romania), 3000 DeSCencias (Spain), Ivan Herák (Czechia), and Romengo (Hungary), among others.