Press Review

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No single headline dominates the papers today. Most of the country's main dailies feature Britain's celebrations of Queen Elizabeth's golden jubilee. On the home front, the forthcoming elections tussle with salaries to win most coverage.

No single headline dominates the papers today. Most of the country's main dailies feature Britain's celebrations of Queen Elizabeth's golden jubilee. On the home front, the forthcoming elections tussle with salaries to win most coverage.

And we begin with the parliamentary elections. With just over a week to go before Czechs cast their vote, most papers wonder what is being discussed at secret meetings between the leaders of the main parties. Lidove noviny, for example looks into Friday's meeting between Civic Democrat leader Vaclav Klaus and Christian Democrat leader Cyril Svoboda. It claims that come what may, the elections will not see a clear winner as none of the parties stand a chance without entering a government coalition.

Mlada fronta Dnes' front-page headline suggests that politicians are already horsetrading behind the scenes over who will receive which cabinet post. The paper claims that both the Social Democrats and the Civic Democrats are naming candidates who have stayed out of the limelight throughout their past political careers. It gives the example of the Social Democrat head of parliament's agriculture committee, Jaroslav Palas, taking the post of agriculture minister, whilst the Civic Democrats would allocate the post of health minister to MP Jaroslav Zverina.

The paper also features a table in which it looks at the most likely candidates for the job of prime minister. If the Civic Democrats enter a right-of-centre coalition with the Christian Democrats and Freedom Union, their leader, Vaclav Klaus will probably be Prime Minister. However, if the Social Democrats get together with the same two parties their leader Vladimir Spidla is the likely Prime Minister. In the case of a grand coalition between the two big players, the Social Democrats and the Civic Democrats, either Spidla or Klaus could get the top job. None of the combinations above can be ruled out.

And moving away from election speculation, Lidove noviny features an article on wages, which have accelerated sharply in the past three months. Despite this rapid growth the paper quotes experts as saying they do not fear it will put pressure on inflation. The article features a graphic table of the average salaries of fifteen selected professions comparing them to last year at the same time.

Whilst the average monthly wage of those working in the financial sector lies around 31,166 Czech crowns, with a 15.6 percent increase year on year, teachers only receive 11,249 Czech crowns, having seen average pay rises of 5.8 percent since last year at the same time.

University entrance exams have begun and yet most of those applying for university have little chance of getting into the study programme they want, writes today's Pravo. Whilst some students taking the exam have come fresh from secondary school, others graduated years ago and have been trying to get into the universities of their choice ever since. The problem, says the paper, lies in the low proportion of students that are accepted.

The humanities are the most popular subjects and many of the faculties in question only accept 15 to 20 percent of applicants. Students have to go through entrance examinations for several universities at once. The paper gives the example of a 19 year-old student who is applying to law school, journalism, a teacher-training college and even a private college, in case her applications fall through.