Czech Republic

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Introduction - Czech Republic:


Czech Republic


Following the First World War, the closely related Czechs and Slovaks of the former Austro-Hungarian Empire merged to form Czechoslovakia. During the interwar years, the new countrys leaders were frequently preoccupied with meeting the demands of other ethnic minorities within the republic, most notably the Sudeten Germans and the Ruthenians (Ukrainians). After World War II, a truncated Czechoslovakia fell within the Soviet sphere of influence. In 1968, an invasion by Warsaw Pact troops ended the efforts of the countrys leaders to liberalize Communist party rule and create socialism with a human face. Anti-Soviet demonstrations the following year ushered in a period of harsh repression. With the collapse of Soviet authority in 1989, Czechoslovakia regained its freedom through a peaceful Velvet Revolution. On 1 January 1993, the country underwent a velvet divorce into its two national components, the Czech Republic and Slovakia. The Czech Republic joined NATO in 1999 and the European Union in 2004.

Location - Czech Republic:


Central Europe, southeast of Germany

Geographic coordinates

49 45 N, 15 30 E

Map references



total: 78,866 sq km
land: 77,276 sq km
water: 1,590 sq km

Area comparative

slightly smaller than South Carolina

Land boundaries

total: 2,290.2 km
border countries: Austria 466.3 km, Germany 810.3 km, Poland 761.8 km, Slovakia 251.8 km


0 km (landlocked)

Maritime claims

none (landlocked)


temperate; cool summers; cold, cloudy, humid winters


Bohemia in the west consists of rolling plains, hills, and plateaus surrounded by low mountains; Moravia in the east consists of very hilly country

Elevation extremes

lowest point: Elbe River 115 m
highest point: Snezka 1,602 m

Natural resources

hard coal, soft coal, kaolin, clay, graphite, timber

Land use

arable land: 38.82%
permanent crops: 3%
other: 58.18% (2005)

Irrigated land

240 sq km (2003)

Natural hazards


Environment current issues

air and water pollution in areas of northwest Bohemia and in northern Moravia around Ostrava present health risks; acid rain damaging forests; efforts to bring industry up to EU code should improve domestic pollution

Environment international agreements

party to: Air Pollution, Air Pollution-Nitrogen Oxides, Air Pollution-Persistent Organic Pollutants, Air Pollution-Sulfur 85, Air Pollution-Sulfur 94, Air Pollution-Volatile Organic Compounds, Antarctic-Environmental Protocol, Antarctic Treaty, Biodiversity, Climate Change, Climate Change-Kyoto Protocol, Desertification, Endangered Species, Environmental Modification, Hazardous Wastes, Law of the Sea, Ozone Layer Protection, Ship Pollution, Wetlands, Whaling
signed, but not ratified: none of the selected agreements

Geography note

landlocked; strategically located astride some of oldest and most significant land routes in Europe; Moravian Gate is a traditional military corridor between the North European Plain and the Danube in central Europe

People - Czech Republic:


10,228,744 (July 2007 est.)

Age structure

0-14 years: 14.1% (male 738,391/female 698,999)
15-64 years: 71.2% (male 3,657,877/female 3,627,493)
65 years and over: 14.7% (male 588,531/female 917,453) (2007 est.)

Median age

total: 39.5 years
male: 37.9 years
female: 41.3 years (2007 est.)

Population growth rate

-0.071% (2007 est.)

Birth rate

8.96 births/1,000 population (2007 est.)

Death rate

10.64 deaths/1,000 population (2007 est.)

Net migration rate

0.97 migrant(s)/1,000 population (2007 est.)

Sex ratio

at birth: 1.06 male(s)/female
under 15 years: 1.056 male(s)/female
15-64 years: 1.008 male(s)/female
65 years and over: 0.641 male(s)/female
total population: 0.951 male(s)/female (2007 est.)

Infant mortality rate

total: 3.86 deaths/1,000 live births
male: 4.21 deaths/1,000 live births
female: 3.49 deaths/1,000 live births (2007 est.)

Life expectancy at birth

total population: 76.42 years
male: 73.14 years
female: 79.88 years (2007 est.)

Total fertility rate

1.22 children born/woman (2007 est.)

Hiv aids adult prevalence rate

less than 0.1% (2001 est.)

Hiv aids people living with hiv aids

2,500 (2001 est.)

Hiv aids deaths

less than 10 (2001 est.)


noun: Czech(s)
adjective: Czech

Ethnic groups

Czech 90.4%, Moravian 3.7%, Slovak 1.9%, other 4% (2001 census)


Roman Catholic 26.8%, Protestant 2.1%, other 3.3%, unspecified 8.8%, unaffiliated 59% (2001 census)


Czech 94.9%, Slovak 2%, other 2.3%, unidentified 0.8% (2001 census)


definition: NA
total population: 99%
male: 99%
female: 99% (2003 est.)

Government - Czech Republic:

Country name

conventional long form: Czech Republic
conventional short form: Czech Republic
local long form: Ceska Republika
local short form: Cesko

Government type

parliamentary democracy


name: Prague
geographic coordinates: 50 05 N, 14 28 E
time difference: UTC+1 (6 hours ahead of Washington, DC during Standard Time)
daylight saving time: +1hr, begins last Sunday in March; ends last Sunday in October

Administrative divisions

13 regions (kraje, singular - kraj) and 1 capital city* (hlavni mesto); Jihocesky Kraj, Jihomoravsky Kraj, Karlovarsky Kraj, Kralovehradecky Kraj, Liberecky Kraj, Moravskoslezsky Kraj, Olomoucky Kraj, Pardubicky Kraj, Plzensky Kraj, Praha (Prague)*, Stredocesky Kraj, Ustecky Kraj, Vysocina, Zlinsky Kraj


1 January 1993 (Czechoslovakia split into the Czech Republic and Slovakia)

National holiday

Czech Founding Day, 28 October (1918)


ratified 16 December 1992, effective 1 January 1993

Legal system

civil law system based on Austro-Hungarian codes; has not accepted compulsory ICJ jurisdiction; legal code modified to bring it in line with Organization on Security and Cooperation in Europe (OSCE) obligations and to expunge Marxist-Leninist legal theory


18 years of age; universal

Executive branch

chief of state: President Vaclav KLAUS (since 7 March 2003)
head of government: Prime Minister Mirek TOPOLANEK (since 9 January 2007); Deputy Prime Ministers Petr NECAS (since 9 January 2007), Jiri CUNEK (since 9 January 2007), Martin BURSIK (since 9 January 2007), and Alexandr VONDRA (since 9 January 2007)
cabinet: Cabinet appointed by the president on the recommendation of the prime minister
elections: president elected by Parliament for a five-year term (eligible for a second term); last successful election held 28 February 2003 (after earlier elections held 15 and 24 January 2003 were inconclusive; next election to be held in January 2008); prime minister appointed by the president
election results: Vaclav KLAUS elected president on 28 February 2003; Vaclav KLAUS 142 votes, Jan SOKOL 124 votes (third round; combined votes of both chambers of parliament)

Legislative branch

bicameral Parliament or Parlament consists of the Senate or Senat (81 seats; members are elected by popular vote to serve six-year terms; one-third elected every two years) and the Chamber of Deputies or Poslanecka Snemovna (200 seats; members are elected by popular vote to serve four-year terms)
elections: Senate - last held in two rounds 20-21 and 27-28 October 2006 (next to be held in October 2008); Chamber of Deputies - last held 2-3 June 2006 (next to be held by June 2010)
election results: Senate - percent of vote by party - NA; seats by party - ODS 41, CSSD 12, KDU-CSL 11, others 15, independents 2; Chamber of Deputies - percent of vote by party - ODS 35.4%, CSSD 32.3%, KSCM 12.8%, KDU-CSL 7.2%, Greens 6.3%, other 6%; seats by party - ODS 81, CSSD 74, KSCM 26, KDU-CSL 13, Greens 6

Judicial branch

Supreme Court; Constitutional Court; chairman and deputy chairmen are appointed by the president for a 10-year term

Political parties and leaders

Association of Independent Candidates-European Democrats or SNK-ED [Jana HYBASKOVA]; Christian Democratic Union-Czechoslovak Peoples Party or KDU-CSL [Jiri CUNEK]; Civic Democratic Alliance or ODA [Jirina NOVAKOVA]; Civic Democratic Party or ODS [Mirek TOPOLANEK]; Communist Party of Bohemia and Moravia or KSCM [Vojtech FILIP]; Czech Social Democratic Party or CSSD [Jiri PAROUBEK]; Freedom Union-Democratic Union or US-DEU [Jan HADRAVA]; Green Party [Martin BURSIK]; Independent Democrats (NEZDEM) [Vladimir ZELEZNY]; Party of Open Society (SOS) [Pavel NOVACEK]; Path of Change [Jiri LOBKOWITZ]

Political pressure groups and leaders

Czech-Moravian Confederation of Trade Unions or CMKOS [Milan STECH]

International organization participation

ACCT (observer), Australia Group, BIS, BSEC (observer), CE, CEI, CERN, EAPC, EBRD, EIB, ESA (cooperating state), EU, FAO, IAEA, IBRD, ICAO, ICC, ICCt (signatory), ICRM, IDA, IEA, IFC, IFRCS, ILO, IMF, IMO, IMSO, Interpol, IOC, IOM, IPU, ISO, ITSO, ITU, ITUC, MIGA, MONUC, NAM (guest), NATO, NEA, NSG, OAS (observer), OECD, OIF (observer), OPCW, OSCE, PCA, UN, UNCTAD, UNESCO, UNIDO, UNITAR, UNMEE, UNMIL, UNOMIG, UNWTO, UPU, WCL, WCO, WEU (associate), WFTU, WHO, WIPO, WMO, WTO, ZC

Diplomatic representation in the us

chief of mission: Ambassador Petr KOLAR
chancery: 3900 Spring of Freedom Street NW, Washington, DC 20008
telephone: [1] (202) 274-9100
FAX: [1] (202) 966-8540
consulate(s) general: Chicago, Los Angeles, New York

Diplomatic representation from the us

chief of mission: Ambassador Richard W. GRABER
embassy: Trziste 15, 11801 Prague 1
mailing address: use embassy street address
telephone: [420] 257 022 000
FAX: [420] 257 022 809

Flag description

two equal horizontal bands of white (top) and red with a blue isosceles triangle based on the hoist side (identical to the flag of the former Czechoslovakia)

Economy - Czech Republic:

Economy overview

The Czech Republic is one of the most stable and prosperous of the post-Communist states of Central and Eastern Europe. Growth in 2000-05 was supported by exports to the EU, primarily to Germany, and a strong recovery of foreign and domestic investment. Domestic demand is playing an ever more important role in underpinning growth as interest rates drop and the availability of credit cards and mortgages increases. The current account deficit has declined to around 3% of GDP as demand for Czech products in the European Union has increased. Inflation is under control. Recent accession to the EU gives further impetus and direction to structural reform. In early 2004, the government passed increases in the Value Added Tax (VAT) and tightened eligibility for social benefits with the intention to bring the public finance gap down to 4% of GDP by 2006. However, due to significant increases in social spending in the run-up to June 2006 elections, the government is not likely to meet this goal. Negotiations on pension and healthcare reforms are continuing without clear prospects for agreement and implementation. Privatization of the state-owned telecommunications firm Cesky Telecom took place in 2005. Intensified restructuring among large enterprises, improvements in the financial sector, and effective use of available EU funds should strengthen output growth.

Gdp purchasing power parity

$224 billion (2006 est.)

Gdp official exchange rate

$118.8 billion (2006 est.)

Gdp real growth rate

6.1% (2006 est.)

Gdp per capita ppp

$21,900 (2006 est.)

Gdp composition by sector

agriculture: 2.8%
industry: 37.8%
services: 59.4% (2006 est.)

Labor force

5.31 million (2006 est.)

Labor force by occupation

agriculture: 4.1%
industry: 37.6%
services: 58.3% (2003)

Unemployment rate

8.4% (2006 est.)

Population below poverty line


Household income or consumption by percentage share

lowest 10%: 4.3%
highest 10%: 22.4% (1996)

Distribution of family income gini index

27.3 (2003)

Inflation rate consumer prices

2.7% (2006 est.)

Investment gross fixed

26.2% of GDP (2006 est.)


revenues: $57.88 billion
expenditures: $62.53 billion; including capital expenditures of $NA (2006 est.)

Public debt

29.1% of GDP (2006 est.)

Agriculture products

wheat, potatoes, sugar beets, hops, fruit; pigs, poultry


metallurgy, machinery and equipment, motor vehicles, glass, armaments

Industrial production growth rate

9.5% (2006 est.)

Electricity production

79.14 billion kWh (2004)

Electricity consumption

58.8 billion kWh (2004)

Electricity exports

24.6 billion kWh (2004)

Electricity imports

9.8 billion kWh (2004)

Oil production

15,240 bbl/day (2005)

Oil consumption

203,100 bbl/day (2004 est.)

Oil exports

20,930 bbl/day (2004)

Oil imports

203,700 bbl/day (2004)

Oil proved reserves

15 million bbl (1 January 2005)

Natural gas production

216 million cu m (2004 est.)

Natural gas consumption

9.6 billion cu m (2004 est.)

Natural gas exports

88 million cu m (2004 est.)

Natural gas imports

8.815 billion cu m (2004 est.)

Natural gas proved reserves

3.964 billion cu m (1 January 2005 est.)

Current account balance

-$4.352 billion (2006 est.)


$89.34 billion f.o.b. (2006 est.)

Exports commodities

machinery and transport equipment 52%, chemicals 5%, raw materials and fuel 9% (2003)

Exports partners

Germany 31.9%, Slovakia 8.5%, Poland 5.7%, France 5.6%, Austria 5.1%, UK 4.8%, Italy 4.6% (2006)


$87.7 billion f.o.b. (2006 est.)

Imports commodities

machinery and transport equipment 46%, raw materials and fuels 15%, chemicals 10% (2003)

Imports partners

Germany 32%, Netherlands 6.5%, Slovakia 6.1%, Poland 6.1%, Russia 5.7%, Austria 4.9%, Italy 4.4%, France 4.4% (2006)

Reserves of foreign exchange and gold

$30.99 billion (2006 est.)

Debt external

$50.2 billion (30 June 2006 est.)

Economic aid recipient

$2.4 billion in available EU structural adjustment and cohesion funds (2004-06)

Currency code

Czech koruna (CZK)

Exchange rates

koruny per US dollar - 22.596 (2006), 23.957 (2005), 25.7 (2004), 28.209 (2003), 32.739 (2002)

Communications - Czech Republic:

Fiscal year

calendar year

Telephones main lines in use

3,217,300 (2005)

Telephones mobile cellular

12.15 million (2006)

Telephone system

general assessment: privatization and modernization of the Czech telecommunication system got a late start but is advancing steadily; growth in the use of mobile cellular telephones is particularly vigorous
domestic: 86% of exchanges now digital; existing copper subscriber systems now being enhanced with Asymmetric Digital Subscriber Line (ADSL) equipment to accommodate Internet and other digital signals; trunk systems include fiber-optic cable and microwave radio relay
international: country code - 420; satellite earth stations - 2 Intersputnik (Atlantic and Indian Ocean regions), 1 Intelsat, 1 Eutelsat, 1 Inmarsat, 1 Globalstar

Radio broadcast stations

AM 31, FM 304, shortwave 17 (2000)

Television broadcast stations

150 (plus 1,434 repeaters) (2000)

Internet country code


Internet hosts

1.267 million (2006)

Internet users

3.541 million (2006)

Transportation - Czech Republic:


121 (2006)

Airports with paved runways

total: 46
over 3,047 m: 2
2,438 to 3,047 m: 10
1,524 to 2,437 m: 13
914 to 1,523 m: 2
under 914 m: 19 (2006)

Airports with unpaved runways

total: 75
1,524 to 2,437 m: 1
914 to 1,523 m: 25
under 914 m: 49 (2006)


2 (2006)


gas 7,010 km; oil 547 km; refined products 94 km (2006)


total: 9,632 km
standard gauge: 9,533 km 1.435-m gauge (2,982 km electrified)
narrow gauge: 99 km 0.760-m gauge (2006)


total: 127,747 km
paved: 127,747 km (includes 518 km of expressways) (2003)


664 km (principally on Elbe as well as Vltava and Oder rivers) (2006)

Merchant marine

registered in other countries: 1 (Saint Vincent and the Grenadines 1) (2006)

Ports and terminals

Decin, Prague, Usti nad Labem

Military - Czech Republic:

Military branches

Army of the Czech Republic (ACR): Joint Forces Command (includes Army and Air Forces), Support and Training Forces Command (2007)

Military service age and obligation

18-50 years of age for voluntary military service; on-going transformation of military service into a fully professional, all-volunteer force no longer dependent on conscription began in January 2004 and is scheduled to be completed by 2007 (2005)

Manpower available for military service

males age 18-49: 2,414,728
females age 18-49: 2,329,412 (2005 est.)

Manpower fit for military service

males age 18-49: 1,996,631
females age 18-49: 1,923,508 (2005 est.)

Manpower reaching military service age annually

males age 18-49: 66,583
females age 18-49: 63,363 (2005 est.)

Military expenditures percent of gdp

1.81% (2005 est.)

Disputes international

in 2006, Austrian public protests for the Czech Republic to close the Temelin nuclear power plant resulted in an Austrian parliamentary motion threatening international legal action

This page was last updated on 16 September, 2007
Source: CIA >>>

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