In Business News this week: recession fears banished by surprise statistics; Czech vehicle production rises in 2009; Volkswagen seeks to curb Škoda competition; foreign investment falls, but less than regional average; and Czech recording company makes Scottish buy
Czech recovery confirmed by surprise growth figure
Vehicle production grows in 2009
The Czech Republic confirmed its place as the fifth biggest vehicle producer in the European Union in 2009 based on figures from manufacturers. Along with Slovenia, the country was the only one where production actually increased during difficult conditions last year. The 3.0 percent increase took total output to almost 975,000 units. If 2009 trends continue, the Czech Republic could soon replace Britain as the fourth biggest EU producer. British production fell by almost a third to stand at just over a million vehicles in 2009.
Volkswagen seeks to curb Czech sales competition
FDI fall estimated at 20 percent
Direct foreign investment in the Czech Republic probably dropped by around 20 percent last year compared with 2008, according to a survey this week by international consultants PriceWaterhouseCoopers. That is a lot better than the trend for the Central European region where inward investment is reckoned to have halved as a result of the economic crisis. One of the biggest declines across the region has been in real estate investment. In the Czech Republic, investments in car components ventures dropped by two-thirds. Experts warn many investment decisions are still frozen with the chance of only a mild upturn in direct foreign investment this year.