News Monday, JUNE 19th, 2000

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IPB sold to CSOB

The troubled IPB bank has been sold to the Czech bank CSOB. The administrator appointed to IPB by the Czech National Bank said that an audit revealed losses exceeding IPB's base capital and the bank would not be able to function properly without continuous financial support from the Central Bank. The Czech National Bank has therefore initiated proceedings for the withdrawal of IPB's banking licence. CSOB will inherit all assets and liabilities of IPB in exchange for a delayed payment which will be decided after another audit conducted by two independent international auditors.

FinMin: IPB fall could have decreased GDP

On Sunday, the Czech Minister of Finance Pavel Mertlik justified the imposition of forced administration upon IPB, saying that the bank's collapse would have decreased the country's GDP by 3 to 4 percent. Mertlik explained that the government and the Czech National bank decided for the cheapest solution available at the moment.

The Czech National Bank imposed forced administration on the bank on Friday, after clients started to panic upon media speculation about the bank's condition and withdrew more than 10 billion crowns from it during one week.

83 Asian refugees caught at Slovak border

Czech police have arrested 83 refugees from several Asian countries who tried to cross the border from Slovakia. The people were crowded in two trucks with Czech licence plates. Two Indians were so exhausted that they collapsed and had to be taken to hospital. The others were handed over to the foreign department of the Czech police and will later be deported to Slovakia.

Interior ministry reports on organised crime

The Ministry of Interior has published a report on organised crime in the Czech Republic. The report says there are a number of foreign criminal groups operating in the Czech Republic who are linked to international criminal gangs. These gangs, usually very well organised, come mainly from the former Soviet Union, former Yugoslavia and other Balkan countries, Arab countries, Italy, and South-Eastern Asia, especially China and Vietnam. The most agile are russian-speaking organisations, who specialise in financial crime. These and Balkan gangs are known for excessive brutality and frequent use of firearms.

Czech footballers promise to fight hard against Denmark

The Czech football team has promised to prepare themselves properly for their final match at EURO 2000. Czech coach Jozef Chovanec also denied speculation that he may not want to disclose his cards and change tactics, because the Czech Republic faces Denmark for a world cup qualifier later this year. Some members of the Czech team said they will fight hard even in the last match to keep the good reputation they have earned at EURO 2000 so far. Matches between teams that have lost their chance of proceeding to the quarterfinals often lack excitement and the European Football Union once cancelled a match between defeated semifinalists.

Oil imports more than doubled y-on-y

The value of Czech imports of crude oil and oil products more than doubled year-on-year over the past four months of this year, although the tonnage decreased slightly compared to the same period last year. The Czech Statistical Office announced that the Russian Federation remains the main supplier of oil to the Czech Republic, followed by Slovakia, Austria, Germany and Algeria.

Czech weather report

And finally, a quick look at the weather. We are expecting a mostly clear to partially cloudy day, the highest daytime temperatures should reach up to 30 degrees Celsius.