Czech morning news roundup: Friday, October 29, 2021

Presidential awards announced, gas prices skyrocket, and a Czech billionaire could buy an English football club.

Expats.cz Staff

Written by Expats.cz Staff Published on 29.10.2021 10:01 (updated on 29.10.2021) Reading time: 3 minutes

lead story Czech president awards nation's highest honors

Czech President Miloš Zeman will award 29 personalities who have made significant contributions to the Czech Republic, with recipients announced during yesterday’s holiday. These state honors are normally presented on October 28 too, but due to the President’s ill health, it is hoped they will be given by the President in person on January 1 instead.

Awardees include five receiving the Order of the White Lion, the nation’s highest honor. This award will go to actress Jiřina Bohdalová, cosmonaut and former ambassador to Russia Vladimír Remek, and will also be posthumously awarded to Czechoslovak World War II pilot Alexander Hess, British politician Alfred Duff Cooper, and recently deceased Czech businessman Petr Kellner.

Other awards are being given to figures such as Czech Ambassador to Afghanistan Jiří Baloun and the commander of the KAMPA Military Police Unit in Afghan operations, Zdeněk Poul. This is the second year in a row in which the traditional state awards ceremony was missed on October 28; last year, it did not take place due to Covid restrictions.

Cost of Living Fuel prices rise to ever greater heights

The dramatic rise in fuel prices at Czech petrol stations is continuing. Petrol rose in price by CZK 0.47 last week to an average of CZK 36.59 per liter, the most expensive rate seen for seven years. The cost of diesel grew by even more, by CZK 0.64 to CZK 35.56 per liter. The last time the price of a liter of diesel was above CZK 35 was in November 2014.

Experts predict that fuel prices will continue to rise in the first half of November. The sharper increase in diesel than in petrol prices is attributed to a sharp rise in the price of natural gas throughout Europe. Some analysts warn than petrol prices of over CZK 40 per liter cannot be ruled out this winter.

Celebrations Videomapping sees Prague landmarks lit up for national holiday

Videomapping display at Fantova Budova, Hlavní nádraží

Prague National Museum and Fantova budova at the main train station were lit up with videomapping displays last night as part of celebrations on the anniversary of the founding of the Czechoslovak state. The National Museum was emblazoned with Czech and Slovak flags as part of the display, while Fantova Budova presented key moments from the history of the building.

Sport Is a Czech billionaire about to buy an English football club?

British media are reporting that Czech billionaire Daniel Křetínský could become a joint owner of England’s West Ham United football club. Křetínský, one of the richest people in the Czech Republic, is said to be considering buying 27 percent of the London club, which is currently well-known in the Czech Republic due to a trio of high-profile Czech players.

It is thought the acquisition would cost Křetínský around CZK 21.3 billion. Some British news sources claim the transaction could take place in the first half of November, possibly with an option for the Czech billionaire to buy the club in its entirety in the future. This possibility is now raising doubts about Křetínský’s continued ownership of Czech club Sparta Prague, which he has owned since 2004. European footballing authority UEFA bans majority ownership of multiple clubs by a single owner.

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Weather More strong winds to hit the Czech Republic today

After strong winds caused widespread damage and power outages in Bohemia last week, the Czech Hydrometeorological Institute has now issued another warning for strong winds from Friday morning until midnight. Gusts of up to 90 km/h could cause transport complications and damage to buildings, the Institute warns.

The strong winds are mostly expected in North Bohemia, with the worst gusts to be seen in mountain regions in the north and northeast. Yet large parts of the country are likely to experience the powerful winds: the weather warning is valid for the Vysočina, Pardubice, Liberec, Olomouc and Moravian-Silesian regions.

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