Germans call on Czech govt to shut down Temelin, stocks plunge

The German environment ministry has called on Prague to close down the Temelin nuclear power station in South Bohemia, citing safety concerns. The Environmental Impact Study ordered by the Czech government failed to convince Berlin that the Soviet-designed plant upgraded with western technology was safe. Upon the news, the stock of the power utility CEZ, which owns and operates Temelin, plunged by more than 20 percent on the Prague Stock Exchange to around 67 crowns 70. CEZ also pulled down some other blue chip shares, such as Ceske Radiokomunikace, Komercni banka, Czech Telecom, and Unipetrol which all lost heavily. CEZ estimates the cost of shutting down Temelin at 115 billion crowns or 3 billion USD. According to economic experts, part of the losses would have to be covered by the state so that CEZ does not go bankrupt before its planned privatisation.