Weekend headlines: Covid quarantine may not be required next year, says Health Minister

Plus: Lucie Bílá and Marek Ztracený named best Czech singers of 2022, Czech movie wins audience award at Cottbus Film Festival, and more headlines.

Expats.cz Staff

Written by Expats.cz Staff Published on 12.11.2022 12:37:00 (updated on 13.11.2022) Reading time: 6 minutes

Health Covid cases may no longer require mandatory quarantine next year

Those who test positive for Covid may no longer have to undergo a mandatory quarantine in 2023, Czech Health Minister Vlastimil Válek told journalists at the Czech Medical Chamber congress in Brno. Ultimately, it will be up to health experts to recommend removing Covid from the list of diseases that require quarantine.

"This is not an issue for politicians to decide, it is a matter for experts. Our institute for tackling pandemics should give us a clear recommendation. As soon as the recommendation is given, Covid will be removed from the list of diseases [that require quarantine]." Currently, those who test positive for Covid in the Czech Republic must undergo a seven-day quarantine.

Music Lucie Bílá, Marek Ztracený named best Czech singers of 2022

Lucie Bílá and Marek Ztracený were named best female and male singers, respectively, at this year's Český slavík (Czech Nightingale) awards, which recognizes the most popular Czech musicians based on votes by the public. Kabát was named best band at this year's ceremony, while singer and actor Jiří Suchý was inducted into the Český slavík Hall of Fame.

According to organizers, a total of 2,110,364 votes were conducted by members of the Czech public for this year's awards. With her win this year, Lucie Bílá has now been awarded a total of 21 Czech Nightingale awards. "I had an amazing year this year, full of concerts and theater, which makes me incredibly happy," Bílá told reporters after the win.

Film Czech movie wins audience award at Cottbus Film Festival

The Czech movie The Last Race (Poslední závod) has won the audience award at this year's Cottbus Film Festival, which culminates in the German city today. The film, which was released in Czech cinemas earlier this year to positive reception from critics and audiences, follows the event of a tragic 1913 cross-country ski race in Krkonoše.


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The grand prize at this year's Cottbus Film Festival went to Safe Place (Sigurno mjesto), a Croatian drama from director Juraj Lerotić. The Last Race was screened in the festival's Hits section, which showcases popular movies from Central and Eastern Europe, and became the first film from this section to win the festival's audience award.

Tech Google voices concerns over new Czech internet law

Google has raised concerns over a new Czech draft amendment governing the publication of content online due to be debated by the Czech Senate in December. The new amendment would give content aggregators less freedom in utilizing content from third sources; for example, it would target the snippets of text used in Google search results.

"We will be only able to show the headline and the hypertext link, but no excerpts," Google representative Julia Schvarcová told the Czech Senate. If passed, the amendment would require companies such as Google, Twitter, and Facebook to gain licences from a collective administrator or individual publishers for the commercial use of their content.

Shopping Survey: 40 percent of Czechs plan to spend less this Christmas season

Around 40 percent of Czechs plan to spend less this Christmas compared to last year, according to a survey conducted by Ipsos for investment agency Porto this month. A total of nine percent of people said they will increase their budget this Christmas season. Three-fourths of respondents plan to fit their Christmas spending to under 10,000 crowns.

According to Porto analyst Filip Louženský, people between the ages of 36-44 are among the most active shoppers, and most likely to spend more than 15,000 crowns this Christmas season.

November 12, 2022

Crime Czech launch investigation over alleged US real estate scam

Czech police are investigating a pair of local businessmen over an alleged real estate scam in which clients reportedly lost millions of crowns, reports Seznam Zprávy. The businessmen reportedly invested money from Czech citizens into real estate in the United States, over which they saw zero returns. Dissatisfied investors later filed criminal charges.

The investors were targeted through web advertisements promising an 80-100 percent return on investment, run by an American company represented by a Czech businessman. Czech police have reached out to authorities in the United States for assistance in investigating the case.

Dining Czech winemakers no longer able to market "young" wine

The first wines made from each year's harvested grapes are typically marketed as "young" wines in the Czech Republic. But under a five-year-old law that was enforced for the first time last year, many winemakers are now marketing "first" wines after no longer being able to use the term "young" on the bottle.

The law dictates that wines that use the term "young", apart from those that have been produced under a special St. Martin's designation, must be sold under the higher protected designation of origin (PDO) category. Wines sold under the St. Martin's designation are exempt from the law, but must follow their own set of regulations. An estimated 2.35 million bottles of St. Martin's wine will be produced in the Czech Republic this year.

Sports Czechia tops USA to advance to Billie Jean King Cup semifinals

Czech tennis stars defeated their American counterparts 2-1 during Friday play in this year's Billie Jean King Cup (formerly the Fed Cup), in which teams of players from different nations compete against each other. Kateřina Siniaková topped Coco Gauff 7-6, 6-1 and Markéta Vondroušová beat Danielle Collins 6-3, 6-3, while Madison Keys and Taylor Townsend defeated Karolina Plíšková and Karolina Muchová in the lone doubles match.

The Czech team won Group D with their victory on Friday and will now take on Group A winners Switzerland in Glasgow from 5:00 p.m. Prague time. In the other semifinal matches, surprise victors Great Britain will take on Australia. Today's winning teams will compete in the finals tomorrow.

Culture Egyptology exhibition opens at Charles University

A new exhibit celebrating two of the most significant scientific discoveries in Egyptology is now underway at Prague's Karolinum, the seat of Charles University in the Czech Republic. Titled The Magic of Discovery: From Hieroglyphs to Tutankhamun, the exhibit runs through December 31 and is free to enter.

Prepared by the Czech Institute of Egyptology at Charles University, the exhibit celebrates the 200th anniversary of the creation of a method for deciphering hieroglyphs in 1822 by Jean François Champollion. It also tells the story of the 1922 discovery of King Tutankhamun's tomb in the Valley of the Kings by Howard Carter.

Economy Czech crown strengthens against euro heading into weekend

The Czech crown strengthened significantly against the dollar heading into the weekend, up .35 crowns over Thursday to come to 23.52 crowns to the dollar by the end of business on Friday. According to experts, the strong crown is a result of falling interest rates in the United States, where prices have risen at a slower rate than expected.

The crown stagnated against the euro on Friday, ending the day at 24.29 crowns to the euro for a week-on-week increase of about 0.4 percent. Prague Stock Exchange, meanwhile, closed out Friday with gains to rise for the ninth straight day.

Health Infertility issues are on the rise in the Czech Republic

More and more couples in the Czech Republic are having issues conceiving children, according to David Rumpík, director of the fertility clinic IVF Zlín. The most common causes of infertility, he says, are unhealthy lifestyles, stress, digital and internet addictions, and postponing motherhood.

"About fifteen years ago, it was a problem to get a man to have [his sperm count tested]," Rumpík tells Czech News Agency. "Today, thanks to the fact that it is now being discussed in the open and that many of us have had children thanks to assisted reproduction, they have lost that shame."

Sports Czech basketball team fails to qualify for World Championships

The Czech Republic's national men's basketball team lost to Montenegro 65-56 on Friday in Pardubice during the qualifying tournament ahead of next year's FIBA World Cup. In suffering their third straight defeat, the Czech team has failed to qualify for next year's world championships.

The Czech had to compete without some of the country's biggest stars, including NBA veterans Tomáš Satoranský, Jan Veselý and Vít Krejčí. "I'm a little disappointed because I think we could have won this game," head coach Ronan Ginzburg told reporters after the game. "We allowed 65 points on defense, and those are games that should usually be won. I think we made a lot of mistakes and bad decisions on offense."

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