The Czech Energy Regulatory Authority (ERÚ) has announced it is conducting wide-ranging audits of so-called “sector suppliers”, or natural monopolies – providers of heating, electricity and gas which are subject to regulation by the office. German-owned gas supplier RWE Transgas is the first in line with others to follow, the ERÚ says. The gas giant says audits of its group firms began two months ago.
Minister of Finance Miroslav Kalousek (TOP 09) has fulfilled one of the points of the coalition government’s strategy to fight corruption and on Wednesday the government will discuss the bill drawn up by his subordinates to introduce managerial responsibility and independent internal audits in the public sector . The proposed legislation has one “small” shortcoming: if passed, they will further complicate the already complex system of financial management and checks.
A legal analysis of the possible results of the criminal proceedings launched by the Swiss federal prosecutor over Czech miner MUS was sent to Czech Position from an address bearing the name of the current owner of the re-named Czech Coal. It suggests that when the MUS verdicts are given, the massive company might be confiscated and returned to the state.
A think tank report shows that the proposed fees for administering second-pillar pension funds are out of line with those for similar programs in other countries such as Sweden. The report’s authors also favor anonymity in the accounts to protect the clients. Finding the right structure for the funds, though, is the most important issue.
The Czech-Slovak investment firm Penta has sold its 100 percent stake in the energy machining company TES Vsetín and engineering company MEZservis to equity firm Advent International for an undisclosed amount. The deal is pending approval from the Czech and German anti-monopoly offices.
Key assets belonging to the bankrupt firm Setuza, and indirectly to the Via Chem Group, are up for sale, the daily Mladá fronta dnes reports. The assets include a pressing plant and refinery for edible oils and brands such as Ceresol, Lukana, Vegetol and Mýdlo s jelenem. The sale is also of importance to the administrations of Prague 6, 10 and 13, which have hundreds of millions of crowns at stake in Via Chem Group.
Penzijní fond Komerční banky head Pavel Jirák says right now it is difficult to guess whether shareholders in today’s funds will be interested in getting involved in the second pillar. One reason is that the detailed parameters of the system are not yet known. If too few people are interested in the second pillar, then banks will be reluctant to get involved.
Andrej Zaťko, the head of private banking at J&T Banka for the Czech Republic and Slovakia, was named a new member of board of directors of the financial group as of April 4. J&T’s board will now have a five-member composition; in addition to Zaťko, it includes Patrik Tkáč, Igor Kováč, Josef Spišiak and Štěpán Ašer.
The fees for administering the planned pension funds will be a key issue that decides the long-term benefit of the government’s pension reforms. The Finance Ministry has given the first indication of the options on how and how much the private funds can make on managing future pensioners’ money. The question is whether the administration of the money will be an attractive proposition for financial institutes and their clients.
Journalist and editor at ČESKÁ POZICE. He graduated from the department of international politics and diplomacy at the Faculty of International Relations of the University of Economics, Prague. During his studies worked as a parliamentary reporter for the Czech News Agency (ČTK), where he later worked as the editor at the economic desk. Then went on to become editor at the weekly Euro, where he was chiefly concerned with macroeconomics and global economics.