Czech news in brief for March 3: Sunday's top headlines

Czech income levels have risen since joining EU, Czechia sees warmest February in 60 years, and more weekend headlines. Staff ČTK

Written by StaffČTK Published on 03.03.2024 08:30:00 (updated on 03.03.2024) Reading time: 4 minutes

Politics Czech Foreign Minister stranded in Mumbai

A delegation led by Foreign Minister Jan Lipavský, returning from Japan, has been stranded in Mumbai due to a plane malfunction and are awaiting a replacement aircraft. The delegation's trip, which began on February 22, included meetings in India, Australia, and Japan. This incident highlights past issues with Czech government aircraft, emphasizing the need for reliable transportation for official delegations.

Accident Prague tram hits 8-year-old boy in Dejvice

A tram collided with an 8-year-old boy in Prague's Dejvice district on Sunday afternoon, causing head injuries. Emergency responders stabilized him and transported him to the nearest trauma center. The child suffered head, chest, and arm injuries but remained conscious. Authorities are investigating the cause and circumstances of the accident.

Environment Czechia preparing plan to phase out coal use

Minister of Industry and Trade Jozef Síkela aims to prepare a law by mid-2025 ensuring a gradual coal phase-out by 2033, addressing concerns over closure of coal plants and mines. The Fiala government plans to end coal-based electricity by 2033, which will require legislative proposals and public support tools. However, concerns arise over power supply stability and impact on heating.

Money Analysts: Real wages fell in Q4 2024

In the fourth quarter of 2023, the Czech Republic saw its average wage grow slower than consumer prices, leading to a ninth consecutive quarter of real wage decrease, according to analysts contacted by Czech News Agency. Despite growth in certain sectors, overall nominal wage growth of 6.6 percent failed to match inflation, resulting in a 0.9 percent real wage decline. This marks the second consecutive year of real wage decrease, with purchasing power falling approximately 11 percent over 2022 and 2023.

Rescue Prague firefighters run flood defense drill

Members of Prague 1's volunteer fire brigade underwent training to erect flood defenses around Žofín Palace on Slovanské ostrov on Saturday. The event, held every two years, saw 64 participants assembling sheet metal barriers to shield the historic palace from potential flooding. Unlike the city-wide flood defense system, preparations on the island include closable ventilation shafts and rainwater draining wells. Since the devastating 2002 floods, Prague has invested heavily in flood protection measures, totaling around CZK 4 billion.


Music Brno celebrates Smetana's 200th birthday

Brno's Besední dům was adorned with blue streamers swaying to the melodies of the Bedřich Smetana's Ma Vlast on Saturday, marking the 200th anniversary of the composer's birth. The Brno Philharmonic delighted attendees with excerpts from Smetana's works, offering an interactive and creative experience. The event, part of a popular family subscription series, attracted a full house of over 300 attendees, ensuring a memorable tribute to the father of Czech music.

Economy Czech income levels have risen since joining EU

The Czech Republic's economic growth has significantly risen since joining the EU, according to new data revealed by Eurostat. Average net annual income has risen from one-third to around two-thirds of the EU average over the past 20 years. The country has surpassed Portugal and Greece in net income over that span. While Czech income levels are now 84 percent of the EU average, purchasing power remains a concern, with Czechs able to buy roughly a fifth less than the average EU resident.

Health WHO: One-third of Czechs will be obese by 2030

According to projections from the World Health Organization detailed in the Czech Ministry of Health's 2030 report, over a third of Czechs will be obese by 2030, a significant increase from five years ago. This surge poses substantial challenges to the healthcare system, costing approximately CZK 30 billion annually. Health risks associated with obesity include type 2 diabetes and cardiovascular diseases, underscoring the urgency for preventive measures.

Weather Czechia sees warmest February in 60 years

February 2024 marked the warmest in Czech history since 1961, with temperatures surpassing those of most Marches. The average temperature reached 5.7 degrees Celsius, 6.1 degrees Celsius above the average from 1991-2020. The Czech Hydrometeorological Institute reported ten days of temperature deviations exceeding seven degrees Celsius. Precipitation was abundant, totaling over 150 percent above average. Early vegetation bloomed five weeks early, signaling an unusually warm pre-spring.

Tourism Czech monument revived after devastating fire

After a devastating fire a decade ago, the historic Libušín cottage at Pustevny in the Beskydy Mountains has been resurrected, now boasting a restaurant utilizing regional ingredients. The restored landmark, designed by architect Dušan Jurkovič in 1899, has become a cultural hotspot, offering guided tours and hosting monthly gatherings with notable personalities. The renovated site has garnered public intrigue, welcoming visitors to explore its rich history and indulge in local delicacies.

Dating Czechia sees surge in online dating in recent years

The Czech Republic has witnessed a surge in online dating in recent years, attributed to technological advancements and the social restrictions imposed by the Covid-19 pandemic. Experts note a growing preference for online platforms among individuals seeking long-term relationships. This shift marks a departure from traditional matchmaking methods, with women comprising a majority of the users on dating sites.

Crime Pilsen police charge man with brutal murder

Pilsen police have charged a suspect in the murder case of a man whose body was found in the Berounka River last year. The victim, a 32-year-old foreigner, was discovered decapitated with additional wounds. A 42-year-old suspect, reportedly a repeat offender, was arrested this week and charged with murder. With investigations ongoing, authorities have not disclosed further details.

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