Tuesday, December 4, 2012

News 12.4.2012

Copyright (c) 2012 Radio Prague (Cesky Rozhlas 7 - Radio Praha)

News Tuesday, December 4th, 2012

By: Ian Willoughby

* The Czech finance minister says Prague will only agree to an EU
banking supervisory body if the bloc grants extra powers to national

* The average salary in the Czech Republic rose by 1.4 percent
year-on-year in the third quarter, though consumer prices rose by 3.3

* The Chamber of Deputies has voted to lift the parliamentary immunity
of the Civic Democrats' Roman Pekarek.

* The consumption of marijuana among young Czechs fell last year,
according to a new report.

* The Czech president and his Hungarian counterpart said after a
meeting in Budapest that their states had a shared interest in
expanding their nuclear power plants.

Kalousek: Czech Republic wants guarantee on sovereignty if EU bank
supervisor created

Speaking in Brussels, the Czech minister of finance, Miroslav Kalousek,
said on Tuesday that the Czech Republic would only agree to the
creation of a European Union banking supervisory body if the bloc
granted extra powers to national regulators. Mr. Kalousek said Prague
wanted a commitment that the Czech National Bank would have the final
authority in the case that a daughter company of an international bank
was transformed into a branch, as branches do not come under national
regulators. He pointed out that over 90 of the Czech banking sector was
owned by the daughter companies of banks based in the eurozone.

Salaries up slightly but not keeping pace with inflation

According to official figures released on Tuesday, the average salary
in the Czech Republic rose to CZK 24,514 in the third quarter of this
year, representing an increase of 1.4 percent year-on-year. However,
given that consumer prices grew by 3.3 percent in the third quarter,
wage-earners were worse off than in the same period in 2011. Analysts
said they had not expected such a marked fall in real incomes.

House votes to lift immunity of MP Roman Pekarek

The Chamber of Deputies voted on Tuesday to lift the parliamentary
immunity of the Civic Democrats' Roman Pekarek. Mr. Pekarek had been in
the process of appealing a six-year jail term for corruption when he
gained a seat in the Chamber of Deputies due to the resignation of a
party colleague. Some 158 of 161 deputies present in the lower house
voted to strip him of his immunity, meaning that his appeal proceeding
can now go ahead. Mr. Pekarek says he is innocent and has rejected
calls for him to quit the lower house.

Young Czechs' consumption of marijuana down slightly last year

The consumption of marijuana among young Czechs fell last year,
according to a new report by the National Monitoring Centre for Drugs
and Drug Addiction. Some 16.1 percent of those in the 16 to 34 age
category told researchers they had consumed the country's most commonly
used illicit drug in 2011, down from 20 percent the year before. At the
same time, the number of what are referred to as problem drug users
grew slightly, the report found.

Czech and Hungarian presidents defend expansion of states' nuclear

The Czech president Vaclav Klaus and his Hungarian counterpart Janos
Ader said after a meeting in Budapest on Tuesday that their countries
had a shared interest in expanding their nuclear power plants. Mr.
Klaus said the two states would defend their nuclear policies in a
Europe that was behaving irrationally. Austria has criticised both the
Czech Republic and Hungary's use of nuclear energy, and the Czech
president said he was disquieted by any Austrian protests against plans
to expand the Temelin plant in south Bohemia. He was in Hungary on the
first day of a two-day state visit.

Kalousek to reveal airlines interested in purchasing CSA

The minister of finance, Miroslav Kalousek, will on Wednesday present
the cabinet with information on which international airlines have
expressed interest in taking over Czech Airlines, or CSA. A
spokesperson for the Ministry of Finance said on Tuesday that the
information would only concern possible interest in taking part in the
privatisation of the Czech national carrier; price and other aspects
would be addressed in a future phase of the process. A previous attempt
to sell off CSA in 2009 was not successful.

Vondra: Latest offer on Swedish fighter planes 10 percent cheaper

The Czech defence minister, Alexandr Vondra, says Sweden has offered
the Czech Republic a new deal to lease 14 Gripen fighter planes that is
10 percent cheaper than an offer made in the summer. The Czech prime
minister, Petr Necas, had previously said that his government might
launch a new tender process for fighter jets if the two sides could not
agree a deal. Mr. Vondra is stepping down at the end of the week.

No injuries in Czech National Library fire

Fire officers were called out on Tuesday morning to put out a fire at
the Czech National Library at Prague's Clementinum. The small fire -
which broke out in a kitchen in the administrative section of the
library - did not cause any injuries. The damages are being assessed. A
spokesperson for the Prague fire service said that the cause appeared
to be an electrical fault. The National Library is currently undergoing

Rare medieval artefacts found beside future Vaclav Havel Library

Archaeologists have found rare medieval artefacts in the courtyard of a
building on Loretanska St. in the Prague Castle complex that should in
future house the Vaclav Havel Library. The excavations have uncovered
human bones, ceramics and coins from the era of Vratislaus II of
Bohemia. The protected building was purchased for the Havel Library by
the wealthy businessman Zdenek Bakala. Some conservationists have
objected to the project, which has yet to receive a construction permit.

Lamb of God singer Blythe charged in Prague over death of fan

The heavy metal musician Randy Blythe has been charged in Prague with
causing bodily harm with lethal consequences. The frontman of the group
Lamb of God is accused of pushing a fan from the stage during a concert
in the city in 2010, resulting in his death. Blythe, who is currently
in the US, spent five weeks on remand in Prague earlier this year
before being released on bail. If found guilty, he could receive a
five- to 10-year jail term.

Czechs beat USA 13:4 at World Floorball Championships

The Czech Republic beat the USA 13:4 at the World Floorball
Championships in Switzerland on Monday night. The Czechs, who were
favourites, got off to a slower start than in their first game - in
which they routed Japan 21:1 - and did not score until the sixth
minute. The result puts them into the knock-out stage, and they will
face Latvia on Tuesday night in a game to decide who wins their group.


Forecasters say we can expect some sunny spells and some snow in the
next couple of days, with temperatures reaching a maximum of 3 degrees

Articles posted on www.radio.cz today

Analyst: Project to expand Temelin should be put on hold

The project to build two new reactors at South Bohemia's Temelin
nuclear power plant represents a huge investment. But the massive
project may never get off the ground, not least if the government
reassesses issues surrounding the project's financing as well as
continuing uncertainty on the energy market.


Alois Nebel wins European Film Award for animation

The historical drama Alois Nebel won the European Film Award for best
animated feature film in Malta over the weekend. Its director Tomas
Lunak thus became the third Czech, after Helena Trestikova and Milos
Forman to take home one of the prestigious European film awards.


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