Police respond to bomb threat at Prague airport

4:00 p.m. The pension insurance system shows a deficit of CZK 10 billion

The Czech Republic’s pension insurance system ended the year with a deficit of almost CZK 10.6 billion, according to data from the Ministry of Finance. The deficit is one billion higher than the previous year and about CZK 6.5 billion higher than two years ago. Pension spending has increased significantly and will increase even more due to the sharp rise in consumer prices, according to Labor Minister Marian Jurečka.

15:07 Zeman appoints 39 new judges to Prague Castle

Czech President Miloš Zeman has appointed nearly forty new judges to Prague Castle, with most of the new arrivals expected to work at the Brno Regional Court. In the meantime, former Advocate General Michal Bobek has been appointed to the Supreme Administrative Court. Of the 39 judges appointed by Minister of Justice Pavel Blažek, 25 are women. Fourteen will go to Brno, ten will go to the Municipal Court in Prague, five will go to the Regional Court in Prague, three will go to Plzeň and Ústí nad Labem, two will go to Ostrava and one will go to Pardubice.

14:00 Czech billionaire accused of tampering with French magazine

Czech billionaire Daniel Křetinský has been accused of forcing journalists from French magazine Marianne to change front-page headlines. Staff from the magazine’s editorial team claimed that the interference from Křetinský, the magazine’s owner, breached rules on media freedom, but Marianne’s editor described the changes as a standard decision taken by the drafting committee. The changes in question affected an original cover image of the two French presidential candidates, Emmanuel Macron and Marine Le Pen, with the word “anger” printed below Macron’s image and “…or chaos” below Le pen. The front page has been changed to read ‘despite anger’ under Macron, and ‘avoid chaos’ under Le Pen, in a bid to make the impression more favorable towards the outgoing French leader.

13:48 Police respond to bomb threat at Václav Havel airport

A bomb was reported on board a plane from Warsaw to Prague on Wednesday morning. The plane landed safely at Václav Havel Airport in Prague and was immediately inspected by Czech police and rescue workers. The airport is operating normally.

“This morning, Prague airport received anonymous information via a contact form about a possible bomb on board an aircraft on the Warsaw – Prague route. We immediately forwarded the notification to all security and operational units The plane landed safely at 12:03 p.m., Prague airport announced on Twitter.

The police evacuated the aircraft and searched the aircraft and baggage. “Operations at the airport are not interrupted or restricted, passengers are not affected by the measure, there is no danger for anyone,” Czech police said on Twitter.

12:21 The Ministry of Agriculture launches a control of food prices

The Czech Ministry of Agriculture is implementing measures to control the price of basic foodstuffs in the face of spiraling inflation. It will start by monitoring the selling prices of selected products, focusing on butter, poultry, pork and pastries. The ministry declined to comment on the specific nature of the control mechanism, but said it was aimed at preventing traders and other members of the supply chain from abusing the situation by unnecessarily increasing profit margins.

11:45 Industrial production in the Czech Republic fell in February

Industrial production in the European Union rose 0.6% month on month in February, but fell 2.4% in Czechia. Data from the official European statistical office Eurostat revealed the disparity between Czech industrial performance and wider European data; the largest increase in industrial production was recorded in Italy, where industry grew by 4%. Slovenia recorded the worst performance, with an 8.3% drop in production.

11:32 National Bank says interest rates won’t drop this year

Governor of the Czech National Bank, Jiří Rusnok, told reporters today that the base interest rate will not decrease this year and that a further increase cannot be ruled out at another meeting of the board of directors. administration of the Bank at the beginning of May. Interest rates were raised by 0.5% at the end of March to counter rising inflation, and now stand at 5%, the highest level seen since 2001. Rusnok also told reporters that the bank was going to open a new reception center, an investment of 124 CZK. million on May 21.

10:00 Czech companies borrowed huge sums in February

Czech companies borrowed significantly more money in February than in previous months. Bank lending increased by CZK 49 billion, the largest monthly increase in 25 years. At the same time, the volume of self-employed savings increased for the first time in six months. Analysts say the growth in business loans points to higher demand typically associated with economic recovery, but further economic turmoil caused by the war in Ukraine could put some businesses in difficulty repaying their loans.

Economy IMF downgrades growth forecast for Czech economy

The International Monetary Fund lowered its estimate for the Czech economy in line with lower expectations around the world. Global economic growth is now forecast at 3.6%, down from the previous estimate of 4.4%. The reduction was caused by the impact of the war in Ukraine.

The IMF expects Czech economic growth to slow to 2.3% this year from 3.3% last year. In November, the organization predicted Czech growth of 3.5% for 2022. This is still a little more optimistic than the forecast of the Czech Ministry of Finance, which calls for growth of just 1.2% this year.

Works Repair work on the Barrandov Bridge will begin on May 16

Long-awaited repairs to Prague’s Barrandov Bridge, one of the busiest roads in the Czech Republic, will begin on Monday, May 16. Traffic restrictions and detour routes will be put in place two days earlier. The first phase of the bridge repair work will last 110 days. The complete renovation of the bridge will take several years.

Prague Deputy Mayor Adam Scheinherr confirmed the timetable, saying work starting in May will see the South Bridge deck repaired and the Strakonická ramp replaced. Diversion routes will be put in place to redirect the approximately 140,000 cars that cross the bridge each day. To mitigate complications, repair work is spread over several years and traffic restrictions will only apply intermittently.

sport Two Czech tennis stars will face off today

Petra Kvitová and Karolína Plíšková will face off today in the first round of the Porsche Tennis Grand Prix in Stuttgart. The match on clay will see two of the stars of Czech tennis face off for the first time in over three years.

Kvitová is a two-time Wimbledon champion, winning the tournament in 2011 and 2014. She is currently ranked 28th in the world. Plíšková has never won a Grand Slam tournament, but she reached the Wimbledon final last year and is a former world number one. she is currently ranked seventh in the world. The pair last faced each other in 2018, Plíšková defeated Kvitová in straight sets.

Defense Pentagon chief to welcome Czech defense minister

US Secretary of Defense Lloyd Austin will meet with his Czech and Polish counterparts at the Pentagon later this week. The meetings will be held separately, meaning Czech Defense Minister Jana Černochová and Polish Defense Minister Mariusz Blaszczak will both have the opportunity to discuss events in Ukraine with Austin.

Prior to the meeting, Czech Minister Černochová clarified that the much-discussed idea of ​​establishing a permanent US military presence in the Czech Republic would not be on the table. Černochová’s previous suggestion that such a proposal be discussed in Washington caused controversy among Czech politicians and the public.

Beer Czech beer giant threatens legal battle against craft brewer

A court battle was narrowly avoided between one of the largest breweries in the Czech Republic and a craft brewer from Pilsen. Prague-based Staropramen Breweries has threatened to sue over the name of a new beer introduced by the Raven Brewery, called Staroraven. Raven renamed her special Novoraven to escape legal action.

Raven CEO Ladislav Vrtiš called the case ridiculous, as Raven customers are unlikely to buy beer from Staropramen and the batch involved was tiny by Staropramen standards. Staropramen responded to reporters’ inquiries by saying its threat was standard procedure for trademark protection.

Berta D. Wells