Flat prices in Czechia rose a record 20 percent compared to last year

Plus: Prague Castle bomb scare caller gets suspended sentence, the Education Ministry dismisses head of Cermat center over mismanagement, and more,

Expats.cz Staff

Written by Expats.cz Staff Published on 23.05.2022 16:45:00 (updated on 24.05.2022) Reading time: 6 minutes

May 24, 2022

Real estate Flats prices rose a record 20 percent year on year

Real estate prices in the Czech Republic continued to grow rapidly in the first quarter of this year, according to Hypoteční banka’s HB Index. Flats rose by 20.6 percent year on year, family houses by 19.6, percent, and land by 23.7 percent, which is the most in 11 years of publication of the index. The Czech National Bank's increase in interest rates has not yet slowed down growth, according to Jiří Feix, board chairman of Hypoteční banka and ČSOB Stavební spořitelna.

"The small supply of real estate, the high growth of construction costs, the fear of a further rise in interest rates, and the effort of people to protect their funds from inflation are probably contributing to the rise in prices," he added. Compared to the previous quarter, the growth of real estate prices accelerated mainly to flats to 5.4 percent. Family houses rose by 4.7 percent and land by 5.6 percent quarter-on-quarter.

Crime Prague Castle bomb scare caller gets suspended sentence

A court imposed a seven-month suspended sentence on a 37-year-old man from the vicinity of Jablonec, North Bohemia, for having caused a bomb scare at Prague Castle, the police tweeted. The perpetrator faced up to three years behind bars. The man, who called himself "the King of the World," called an emergency line on Jan. 4 and threatened to detonate an improvised explosive device at the Castle. Detectives detained him on the same day and he was soon accused of scaremongering. President Miloš Zeman was not there during the bomb threat.

Education Cermat center head fired over mismanagement

Education Minister Petr Gazdík has dismissed Michaela Kleňhová, head of the Cermat center, due to unsatisfactory, inefficient, and sluggish management. The ministry-subsidized center prepares the Czech state part of the secondary school leaving exams. A check carried out by the Finance Ministry has revealed serious flaws in financial management in 2020, Gazdík said. Cermat will be temporarily headed by Gazdík's deputy Milan Štábl until a new director is chosen in a public selection procedure launched by the Education Ministry.

Ukraine Czechia gave helicopters, tanks to Ukraine

The Czech Republic recently donated combat helicopters, tanks, and rocket systems to the Ukrainian army, U.S. Secretary of Defense Lloyd Austin told a press conference after a virtual meeting with representatives of allied countries discussing further military aid to Ukraine. Information on possible deliveries of helicopters from Czechia has not appeared until now. The Czech military uses Russian Mi-24/35 combat helicopters, among others.

Defense Minister Jana Černochová declined to confirm the information. "I appreciate it very much how Defense Secretary Austin values the Czech Republic. But, on principle, I cannot further specify our aid to Ukraine," Černochová said.

security Suspicious suitcase disrupted public transit

A suspicious suitcase found at the National Theater stop paralyzed Prague's public transport yesterday. Police closed Národní Street and sent a pyrotechnic squad to the scene. Tram lines 2, 9, 18, 22, and 23 were diverted, and people were advised to use the metro instead. The suitcase turned out to be empty, the police announced on Twitter.  

crime Ransomware attack on ŘSD caused major damage

The cyberattack on the Czech Road and Motorway Directorate (ŘSD) that started on May 17 caused major damage, its general manager Radek Mátl said. Restoring and finding all the data may take several months even though backup data will be used. After the attack, the ŘSD website, assistance phone lines, system of public contracts, data boxes, accounting, and other programs did not work. Later last week, the ŘSD partly put systems back into operation for the public. However, the website with information on the current traffic situation remains inaccessible. The National Agency for Cyber and Information Security (NÚKIB) said on Friday that ransomware attacked the ŘSD computer systems. NÚKIB said it knows who the attacker is but will not release the name now.

Recognition Olga Havlová Prize goes to voice control technology promoter

The Olga Havlová Prize, which the Good Will Committee-Olga Havlová Foundation annually awards to those who help others despite their own disability, went to Dita Horochovská, the founder of the Silou Hlasu (Through Strength of Voice) project promoting the voice control technology. Horochovská was the first to use the voice control technologies, contributed to their development, and became their everyday user. She and colleague Lukáš Srba founded the Silou Hlasu to help those with movement disabilities control a computer by their voice. The group has trained over 40 clients from all over Czechia so far.

sports Czechia to play Finland in ice hockey quarterfinals

The Czech Republic will play Finland in the quarterfinals of the 2022 IIHF Ice Hockey World Championship. The Czechs secured their participation in the elimination fights with Monday's 1-0 victory over the U.S., which was decided by the only goal of the forward Matěj Blümel and the first net account of the goalkeeper Karel Vejmelka. They will advance to the playoffs from the third place of the basic group B, so they will avoid the best group A team in Helsinki.

May 23, 2022

POLITICS Zeman to meet Swiss, Slovak presidents this week

Czech President Miloš Zeman will meet his Swiss counterpart Ignazio Cassis and Slovak counterpart Zuzana Čaputová this week, Zeman's spokesman Jiří Ovčáček told ČTK today. Zeman will receive Cassis at the chateau at Lány, Central Bohemia, on Thursday, while Čaputová will be hosted at Prague Castle on Friday. At the Prague National Museum, they will commemorate the 80th anniversary of the assassination of high-ranking Nazi officer Reinhard Heydrich who died of his injuries in an attack by Czechoslovak paratroopers in June 1942 during Operation Anthropoid.

economy Government is not not dealing well with inflation

Some 73 percent of people said the government is not helping people enough with the consequences of inflation. Four out of 10 respondents strongly felt that the government was failing to help citizens, and another third moderately felt that the government was failing, according to a survey by Stem/Mark for CNN Prima News.

REAL ESTATE Ministry will inspect Russian property in Czechia

Foreign Minister Jan Lipavský has created a working group that is dealing with rectifying property relations regarding the real estate used by Russia in the Czech Republic, ministerial spokeswoman Lenka Do told journalists today.

The Foreign Ministry has doubts whether about 50 properties still serve diplomatic activities. The group will focus on the buildings that are in Russian ownership, both in and outside Prague.

police Communist ex-minister Kincl prosecuted over shooting at borders

The Czech Police have launched criminal prosecution of former Communist interior minister František Kincl, 81, on suspicion of abuse of power over shootings at Czechoslovakia's borders that killed or wounded people, Seznam Zpravy reported.

According to the Office of Documentation and Investigation of the Crimes of Communism (ÚDV), Kincl did not take any particular measures to prevent border guards from using firearms in 1988 against the people who were attempting to cross the border to escape then-Czechoslovakia and who at the same time, did not threaten guards by any means.

TRANSPORT New voice for announcements in trams wanted

The Prague Transport Company (DPP) is looking for a new voice that will announce stops and other information for passengers in buses and trams on city and suburban lines. An audio poll has been launched on the web, in which people can choose between four voices until June 19. The winner will take over the baton from Dagmar Hazdrová, who has been accompanying passengers daily with her public transport announcements in Prague since 1996.

Passengers can hear competing voices on tram line 9 and bus line 136. “Each voice is recorded in one tram and one bus, while these vehicles are marked with a special external and internal sticker notifying about the survey, including a QR code, after which the passenger will be sent directly to the online survey," the DPP website states.

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