Czech daily news roundup: Tuesday, December 28, 2021

New Czech ministers criticized for lack of English-language skills, fire in Prague 8 claims one life, and more headlines for this morning.

Expats.cz Staff

Written by Expats.cz Staff Published on 28.12.2021 09:58:00 (updated on 28.12.2021) Reading time: 3 minutes

Politics New Czech ministers criticized for lack of English-language skills

At least five ministers within the new Czech cabinet do not speak English well enough to use it in official talks with foreign representatives, writes Hospodářské noviny. The lack of English-language skills stands in contrast to previous comments from members of the the new five-party government, who promised to select ministers with excellent command of foreign languages.

English-language skills will be of especially high importance as the Czech Republic will preside over the Council of the European Union for six months from next July. The five minister will need to use interpreters, writes Hospodářské noviny. In past years, former Czech finance minister Alena Schillerová was criticized for the level of English she used when communicating in Brussels.

Money Prague Stock Exchange weakens, crown strengthens following holidays

The Prague Stock Exchange weakened slightly after the Christmas holidays, with the PX index falling .17 percent to 1422.81 points on Monday. A primary factor in the dip was energy company ČEZ, which fell by more than one-and-a-half percent. Antivirus company Avast and mobile operator O2 also showed losses on Monday.

The Czech crown, meanwhile, continues to strengthen against both the euro and the dollar, and showed nearly two-year highs on Monday. The Czech currency has been strengthening since a raise in base interest rates by the Czech National Bank last week, and hit 25.07 crowns against the euro and 22.15 crowns against the dollar on Monday. The crown is the strongest it has been against the euro since February 2020.

Weather Icy roads continue to threaten drivers in north Bohemia

Ice and snow continue to plague drivers in northern parts of the Czech Republic this morning, though most roads remain passable. In the Liberec region, it is below freezing this morning, but temperatures are significantly higher than in previous days. All roads are passable, but drivers are advised to proceed with caution.

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Drivers in the Hradec Králové and Ústí nad Labem regions are also advised to watch for potentially hazardous driving conditions, with freezing rain in the forecast on Tuesday. Temperatures across the Czech Republic are expected to significantly rise by the weekend, with some locations reaching highs of 10-15 degrees Celsius.

Fire One dead after residential fire in Prague 8

One person has died following a fire at an apartment on Andrštova street in Prague 8 on Monday evening. Prague firefighters evacuated five people from the building, one person was treated for injuries at the location and another was pronounced dead at the scene.

"Unfortunately, we could not help one person, their injuries were incompatible with life," Prague's Medical Rescue Service tweeted last night. "We examined one person, measured their level of carbon monoxide - without critical values ​​or need for transport [to the hospital]."

Zeman Czech President sends condolences following death of Desmond Tutu

Desmond Tutu was an exceptional man who significantly contributed to the victory of democracy in South Africa, Czech President Miloš Zeman wrote in his letter of condolences to South African President Cyril Ramaphosa. Tutu, who fought against apartheid in South Africa and won a Nobel Peace Prize, passed away at the age of 90 on December 26.

The Czech Presidential Office published Zeman's letter on its website on Monday. The Czech President wrote that he had received news about Tutu's death with grief, and expressed his deepest sympathies. Desmond Tutu was an exceptional man who devoted his life to fighting for justice and human rights, and who significantly contributed to the victory of democracy in South Africa, Zeman said.

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