Canadian FPS suing Czech Republic for 450 million CZK. Ashok Leyland buys lorry-maker Avia. GDX Automotive plans production transfer to Ostrava. Second largest Czech steel and iron company, Metalimex, changes hands. Skoda will produce more than 20 000 Roomsters in 2006. Sale of Ceska Posta and Letiste Praha could generate 23 billion CZK
In Business News: the European Commission warns that the aging population will have a considerable impact on Czech GDP growth; the anti-monopoly office hands down the highest ever fine to a state body, after the Labour Ministry awards a contract without a tender; Czech mortgage and home-building savings loans increase ten times in seven years; sales of second-hand cars rise by over 20 percent; and the diplomats may be at loggerheads but trade between the Czech Republic and Cuba rises considerably.
New figures released by the EU statistics office Eurostat this week show that the Czech Republic attracted 8.8 billion euros in foreign direct investment (FDI) last year. This is 5.2 billion euros more than two years previously and higher than foreign direct investment in any other new EU member state. Overall, the Czech Republic ranked eighth among the Union's 25 members.
Newly-released statistics from Eurostat show that of all the new EU member countries, the Czech Republic received the most direct foreign investment in 2005. Foreign investors brought 8.8 billion euros (nearly 250 billion Czech crowns) to the country last year. The figures also show a steady rise in foreign investment from year-to-year, as the Czech Republic surpassed neighbouring Poland in 2005; Poland has nearly four times as many inhabitants as the Czech Republic.
In business news this week: prime minister Mirek Topolanek rules out euro adoption by 2010, plans to sell off Prague Airport, the interior ministry says it wants a strategic partner for the Czech postal service, a consultancy firm predicts a rise in Czech bankruptcies, Mittal Steel Ostrava announces 3,500 reduncancies, Microsoft Czech Republic pledges to double sales, and Lego opens a new distribution centre on the outskirts of Prague.
A Japanese LCD screen joint venture between Hitachi, Panasonic and Toshiba announced on Monday that it had started construction of a 92-million-euro (116-million-dollar) plant in the Czech Republic, AFP reports. Production at the new plant, at Zatec in northwestern Bohemia, is expected to start in 2007 and create jobs for 2,000 people.
In this week's Business News: a senior CNB official says next year's budget will be the worst and most dangerous in years; the Czech Republic faces a huge payout to a Japanese bank after losing an arbitration appeal: spending on employment policy in this country is among the lowest in the EU; a power industry figure calls for a quick decision on the building of a new nuclear power station; and the country's biggest lottery and betting company is 50 on Friday.
Archaeologists unearth seven graves dating back to Great Moravian Empire
Czech Republic bracing for wind storm Sabine
Ron Perlman: Cinema is a much bigger art-form than superhero movies represent
“Einstein in Bohemia” – Part II: how alienation in ‘half-barbaric’ Prague led him to a new theory of gravity, eventual love of a free Czechoslovakia
“Einstein in Bohemia” – part 1: how a Prague sojourn sparked his theory of general relativity, journey of self-discovery