IKEA sees 40% share of e-sales, invests in sustainability

(ČIA) Online sales accounted for almost 40% of IKEA Czech Republic’s revenues in the 2021 financial year, said IKEA Czech Republic, Hungary and Slovakia CEO David McCabe, adding that stores in the Czech Republic had to be closed for six months during the pandemic due to the lockdown. As a result, sales will be down 7% to 8% y/y. IKEA Czech Republic will publish its audited financial results in January 2022. The furniture chain has opened a planning studio in Prague-Chodov, strengthened its regional presence with 13 outlets, and launched self-service outlets in Zličín, Černý Most and Brno. It has invested in digital solutions, sustainable projects and improved customer experience. Parent company Ingka Group reported a 6.3% increase in sales to EUR 37.4bn for the period.


Govt preps changes to COVID rules, shorter quarantine

(ČIA) The validity of PCR tests should be reduced to 72 hours and that of antigenic tests to 24 hours, says Prime Minister Andrej Babiš (ANO). At the same time, quarantine measures are to be changed from October 25, 2021. Health Minister Adam Vojtěch (ANO) said after a meeting of the Government Council for Health Risks that the topic was the changes in the OTN rules (Vaccination, Testing, Illness) and the shortening of the quarantine period. In view of the current epidemic situation, he also wants to focus on higher motivation of citizens to vaccinate. He will present the details on October 15.


Volvo Trucks and HCS Centrum handed over new emergency car to DPP

(ČIA) Volvo Trucks and HCS Centrum have handed over to the Prague City Transport Company (DPP) a PM 155 SP hydraulic crane recovery special built on a Volvo FMX 8x6 chassis. It is designed primarily for the recovery of trams. The complete vehicle superstructure was manufactured by HCS Centrum. The vehicle is equipped with REMOTE CONTROL and a WAECO reversing camera, among others.


SP CR: 55% firms plan to invest more in digitization

(CIANEWS) - A total of 73% of companies expect to get ahead of or keep up with their competitors thanks to digitalisation. At the same time, 74% of businesses declare that they want to increase their productivity by investing in digitalisation. This is according to a survey by the Confederation of Industry (SP CR). 55% of respondents plan to increase their investments in digitalization in the next five years. The survey also showed that a lack of qualified employees, finance or fear of cyber attacks hindered businesses from digitising faster. Of these, the absence of skilled staff was cited by 66% of companies. 98% of businesses were committed to improving their cybersecurity in 2021.


AAVIT: Digitization will lower emissions

(ČIA) Digitization can help meet the emission targets for 2030. The Association for Applied Research in IT (AAVIT) informed that, according to experts, it is important to convince not only companies but also the state to fully embark on the digitization of processes. AAVIT chairman Jaromír Hanzal said that the National Recovery Plan (NPO) will also help, with 20 % of the CZK 180bn for damage caused by the coronavirus pandemic going to digitization. This helps, among other things, to reduce paper correspondence, streamline production processes and electricity use.


SP CR: The government should launch Antivirus B

(ČIA) To help employees and companies that have to limit production due to lack of input materials and parts, the government should activate the Antivirus B program. The Confederation of Industry of the Czech Republic (SP CR) informed that the automotive or paper industry in particular have had problems with the shortage of raw materials and supplies in recent weeks. According to the SP CR, the SP CR has an analysis of the legal and economic scope of the possible launch of the Antivirus B program.


Anytime: Carsharing usage up to 16% in Prague

(ČIA) Public transport is the predominant mode of transport in Prague and is used daily by 34% of Prague residents. In addition, the number of people who use their car daily in the capital is decreasing. Currently, 16% of people use their car, which is 2% less than two years ago. On the other hand, the use of carsharing is growing, with over 11% of the population using shared cars in the capital, which is 4% more than in 2019, according to a survey by Anytime.


Babiš calls tripartite after talks with ŠKODA AUTO

(ČIA) Based on talks with ŠKODA AUTO about the situation in the automotive industry, Prime Minister Andrej Babiš (ANO) has called for a meeting of the Council of Economic and Social Agreement of the Czech Republic. It will take place on October 18, 2021. The reason is the shortage of chips because of the pandemic and restricted production in companies, which affects employees and suppliers. The PM added that support was being prepared.


ABB presented new charging station for up to 4 EVs

(ČIA) The global technology company ABB has launched a new modular charging station for Terra 360 electric cars. It can charge up to four vehicles at once and can charge one car within 100 km in less than three minutes. It will be on sale in Europe from the end of 2021 and in the USA, Latin America and the Asia-Pacific region in 2022.


MHMP: Mobile teams strat vaccination with third dose

(ČIA) The Prague City Hall (MHMP) in cooperation with the Czech Red Cross and the Prague City Polyclinic is renewing the mobile vaccination team project. Currently, health workers are going around with vaccines to facilities for the elderly. The aim is to increase the protection of local clients. Those interested in the third dose of coronavirus vaccination from the most vulnerable groups of the population also have the opportunity to be vaccinated by general practitioners or to use dedicated time slots at vaccination sites located around the capital.


MF: CR supports joint solution of energy prices growth

(ČIA) At the ECOFIN Council meeting in Luxembourg, EU finance ministers discuss changes to insurance regulation and energy price rises. The Czech Republic supported France's proposal for a joint approach to this problem. The document calls, among other things, for reducing the EU's dependence on energy imports and for greater efforts to achieve energy self-sufficiency by investing in the diversification of local energy sources. It also calls for greater regulation of the market in emission allowances in order to reduce the volatility of energy prices and ensure the predictability of the price of allowances. This was announced by the Ministry of Finance (MF).


MPs approve 5-year salary freeze for politicians

(ČIA) The Chamber of Deputies approved on October 5, 2021, in an accelerated procedure a government proposal to freeze politicians' salaries at current levels for the next five years. Now, even with this year's freeze, MPs and senators are entitled to a basic salary of CZK 90 800 per month plus lump-sum cash compensation of CZK 47 200 to 64 000 per month for transport, representation and other expenses. On average, the total sum amounts to CZK 146,00 per month gross. If the salaries were not frozen, they would increase by more than 6.1% from 2022.


EC paid EUR 915m in preliminary funding to CR

(ČIA) The European Commission (EC) paid the Czech Republic an advance payment of EUR 915m from the Recovery and Resilience Facility on September 28, 2021. This corresponds to 13% of its total financial allocation under the Facility. The pre-financing will help to kick-start the implementation of key investment and reform measures outlined in the Czech Republic's post-pandemic recovery and resilience plan. In total, the Czech Republic is to receive EUR 7bn from the Recovery and Resilience Facility. Further payments will be approved by the EC on the basis of the investments and reforms outlined in the Czech plan.


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