In Business News: a major investigation reaching into the upper echelons of government will not negatively impact markets say analysts; the Agriculture Ministry revises the damage figure to the sector from recent floods; the Czech Republic moves up seven notches on KPMG’s VAT list; Czech companies could provide amphibious vehicles for Libya, E15 reports; the TOP 100 association releases its list of top Czech exporters last year.
The police are pushing for a ban on the sale of alcohol over the internet in the Czech Republic, which last year saw dozens of deaths caused by illegally produced spirits. As greater emphasis is placed on the provenance of booze, officers say stocks of alcohol sold online are very hard to police. For their part, retailers say such a ban could cost them huge sums of money.
President Miloš Zeman met with the chairwoman of the European Trade Union Confederation Bernadette Ségol on Monday and voiced his support for the confederation’s proposal for a single EU-wide corporate tax of 25 percent. Prime Minister Petr Nečas strongly disagreed with the president’s position and said that his government is against the harmonization of direct taxation. President Zeman also agreed with the trade union confederation on progressive taxation, and the need to increase investment that could create jobs as well as the introduction of a guaranteed minimum wage across the European Union countries.
Prime Minister Petr Nečas said on Thursday that the government will take a number of steps to help business owners affected by the floods recover their livelihoods. The June 15 deadline for back payments of income taxes has been postponed and owners of businesses damaged by the floods will be freed of the obligation to make advance tax payments for 2013 starting June 30. The premier told the daily Hospodařské noviny that next week the cabinet wants to introduce special low-interest bank loans guaranteed by the government to help with repairs and recovery of small businesses.
Czech weapons producers are pushing for a change of the government’s system of approving arms exports. Sales of Czech-made weapons abroad last year rose by to nearly seven billion crowns, and the country’s weapons producer, Česká zbrojovka, posted record revenues of some 2.2 billion crowns. But the industry says the current system of licensing arms exports is ambiguous which hurts Czech producers. I discussed the issue with Jiří Hynek, the head of the Defence and Security Industry Association, a lobby group.
On a working visit to Russia PM Petr Nečas on Monday said the country afforded considerable business opportunities for investment and trade. Following a meeting with Russian Prime Minister Dmitri Medvedev, Mr. Nečas said the two sides had agreed to strengthen business relations and tap mutual investment opportunities. Trade has picked up in recent years with the trade turnover in 2012 exceeding six billion U.S. dollars for the first time in history. The Russian prime minister also lobbied for the Russian-Czech consortium which is one of the bidders for the multi-million crown tender to complete the construction of the Temelín nuclear power plant in southern Bohemia. Prime Minister Medvedev said that by selecting the Russian-Czech consortium the e Czech Republic could secure a 156 billion crown investment for its industrial sector.
One of the Czech Republic’s best known soccer clubs has just escaped bankruptcy and expulsion from the first division. In fact, for a brief period on Monday it appeared it really was curtains for Baník Ostrava. But how have the 2004 league champions found themselves in such dire straits? And what does the future hold for the club?
In Sports News this Monday: Zuzana Hejnová wins 400m hurdles at Diamond League meeting in Shanghai; Baník Ostrava football club come dangerously close to bankruptcy; Arsenal and Spurs said to be keen to snap up Czech striker Matěj Vydra; and Tomáš Berdych overcomes one bogeyman in Rome but can’t get past second.
The Czech top flight soccer club Baník Ostrava will go bankrupt if the council in the north Moravian city does not vote to purchase Baník’s Bazaly ground at an extraordinary meeting on Monday. The club, whose history stretches back 90 years, would be expelled from the first division. Baník’s stadium is valued at around CZK 115. Some councillors have said they will not support its purchase and the coalition that governs in the city is said to be divided on the matter.
The trial against Tatra truck maker CEO Ronald Adams, charged with bribery, is due to begin in Brno on June 6, a spokeswoman for Brno city court said. Mr Adams allegedly offered a 20-million-crown bribe to then deputy defence minister Martin Barták in exchange for army contracts for the firm. Mr Barták, who reportedly testified against Mr Adams, has also been charged in the case.
Over 1,000 skeletons discovered during renovation of Kutná Hora “bone church”
Why are Russian and Chinese spying activities in Czech Republic so intense and how exactly do they do it?
Prague’s historical Koh-i-noor factory to be converted into residential area
An Experiment in Vivisection: Czechoslovakia’s Second Republic 1938-1939
The history of the “German Czechs”