The minister of finance, ANO appointee Alena Schillerová, says more money
will be available to individual government departments than previously
planned. The prognosis for expansion of gross domestic product has improved
while savings have also been made in servicing the state debt, Czech
Ms. Schillerová says the 2020 state budget could be up to CZK 10 billion higher than previously projected. This will be clear by the end of August, she said.
The finance chief has already agreed deals with a number of cabinet colleagues on their ministries’ budgets for next year.
The Social Democrats, the junior party in the coalition, are pushing for more money for certain areas.
Unions and organisations of hospitals, medics and doctors have called for
health spending to be increased to 9 percent of Czech gross domestic
product. Representatives of 13 organisations made the demand at a news
conference on Monday. At present less than 7 percent of the country’s GDP
goes toward the healthcare sector.
The groups in question have also called for CZK 25 billion from the reserves of the country’s health insurers to be put into healthcare in 2020. However, the minister of health, ANO appointee Adam Vojtěch, has described this as a short-term solution that would only suffice for one year.
Police have charged an express train driver who did not respect a red light
and entered the wrong track in the Plzeň Region in late February. He
managed to stop the train, which was carrying 200 passengers, just 30
metres from another one travelling in the opposite direction, whose driver
had also put the brakes on.
Nobody was injured in the incident. The man faces up to five years in prison or a ban on driving trains.
The Prague transport authority has begun testing out hybrid buses produced
by the company Iveco. Trial usage of vehicles made by Solaris and Volvo
began at the end of last month. A representative of the transport authority
said the hybrid buses had so far shown savings of about one-quarter in
usage of diesel.
Prague gets between 100 and 120 new buses a year. From 2020 a significant portion of them should be hybrid vehicles. This is in part because the city has committed to halving its carbon emissions by 2030.
Sparta Prague manager Václav Jílek has accused his players of making
trivial and naive mistakes in defence after a 3:4 defeat at Mladá Boleslav
in Czech football’s First League on Sunday. Sparta have seven points out
of a possible 15 after the first five rounds of the season.
Defending champions Slavia Prague are first on 13 points after a 1:0 win over Jablonec at the weekend. Viktoria Plzen were beaten 2:0 at home by Slovácko; last season’s runners-up have now failed to score in four games.
Kateřina Siniaková and Barbora Krejčíková won the women’s doubles
competition at the Rodgers Cup in Toronto. The Czech pair, who were top
seeds, beat Anna-Lena Grönefeld of Germany and Demi Schuurs of the
Netherlands 7-5 6-0 in Sunday’s final.
It was the third title that Krejčíková and Siniaková have lifted together after the French Open and Wimbledon last year.
Social Democrat MP Jaroslav Foldyna has been criticised by party colleagues
after appearing at an event held on Saturday in opposition to the Prague
Pride parade. Also in attendance at what was named a “Patriotic Meeting
of the Association of Friends of the White Heterosexual Man” were
far-right leader Tomáš Vandas and anti-Muslim campaigner Martin
The Social Democrat minister of labour, Jana Maláčová, said Mr. Foldyna was harming the party by drawing attention to his participation in obscure events. The party’s foreign minister, Tomáš Petříček, said Mr. Foldyna’s recent actions were openly at odds with its values and manifesto and proved he was neither social nor a democrat.
A man has been found guilty of making a Nazi salute at an event organised
by Tomio Okamura’s Freedom and Direct Democracy party. The Prague 1
District Court gave Radek Mansfeld a six-month suspended sentence and fined
him CZK 30,000 in connection with the incident, which occurred in April at
a meeting in central Prague at which leaders of European far-right parties
spoke out against what they call the dictate of the EU.
A judge said Mr. Mansfeld was fully aware of the meaning of neo-Nazism and that making the “seig heil” gesture was a symbol of fascism. He has appealed the verdict.
The Ministry of Education has failed to standardise and implement key parts
of a strategy for teaching information technology in primary and secondary
schools, the Supreme Audit Office (SAO) says in its latest report.
The Ministry has yet to create a standard for teaching basic IT knowledge to students, as required in the Digital Education Strategy adopted in November 2014 for the period up to 2020, the auditors say
At the same time, the Supreme Audit Office says Czech schools have been allocated too little money for computer equipment and must rely too heavily on EU funds, which are not a stable source in the long term.
A Ministry spokesperson rejected the Office’s findings as misleading. They draw on data from 2011 to 2018 and don’t take into account steps implemented this year and planned through 2020, the spokesperson said.