Milos Zeman


Zeman Looks To Cash In On Economic Growth

Andrej Babiš, Czech Corruption, Czech Industry and Trade Ministry, Miloš Zeman

Lany, Central Bohemia, April 28 (CTK) – Czech President Milos Zeman and his team of aides today discussed the lacking reform of the pension and healthcare systems, flats for young families and other topics at the Lany presidential chateau, one of the aides, former supreme state attorney Marie Benesova, told CTK.


Benesova said the preparation of the healthcare and pension reforms was neglected.


The present period of economic growth has been an opportunity for the reform, but it has not been used so far, she indicated.


Benesova said practically all in the team agreed that available flats for young families would be a better concept than social housing.


The Regional Development Ministry recently announced that it would provide further two billion crowns from EU subsidies for social housing projects. Until now, the ministry granted subsidies worth about 750 million crowns in total to 119 projects within the Integrated Regional Operational Programme.


The Presidential Office said today the Lany meeting dealt with monetary policy.


CNB central bank governor Jiri Rusnok, who is one of Zeman’s aides, was to talk about the latest development of the Czech economy and the economic outlook.


The central bank expects economic growth of 3.6 percent this year. On Thursday, its new prognosis will be released.


Benesova said the aides discussed CNB interventions concerning mortgages.


The presidential aides have met for the first time since Zeman’s re-election as head of state in January.


Benesova said the next meeting should be held in about a month and deal with energy policy.


In Zeman’s first five-year presidential mandate, his aides regularly met at the Lany chateau near Prague to discuss topics such as the approval of the state budget, big road construction projects and changes in the judiciary or the police. The ministers who were in charge of the given agenda were usually invited to the meetings.


According to the Presidential Office website, the team has 11 members, including, Presidential Office head Vratislav Mynar and Czech Ambassador to the USA Hynek Kmonicek, who previously headed the foreign affairs section of the Presidential Office. Chamber of Commerce head Vladimir Dlouhy was recently added to the team of the presidential aides.