Visegrád Group - Economies - Czech Republic


The second largest economy in the group is the Czech Republic (GDP of USD 273.070 billion total, 42nd in world ranking). Before the Second World War, the Czech Republic was one of the most advanced countries in the world. However, the subsequent 41 years of communism greatly damaged the economy. Since the velvet revolution, the Czech Republic has successfully transformed itself into a free market economy. Today the Czech Republic is a highly industrialized country and belongs to the 30 most developed countries (according to the world bank). The main problems are corruption, and inequality between regions.

The main industries in the Czech Republic are chemicals, machinery, food processing, metallurgy and smelting. Other major industry sectors are energy, construction and consumer. Less important are the arms industry and glass, but these have a long tradition in Bohemia. Industry accounts for 35% of the Czech economy. The Czech Republic produces per capita the most cars in the world and about the same amount as in Great Britain. Main producers are Škoda auto, Peugeot-Citroen, Toyota and Hyundai. Other major companies are ČEZ (biggest company in central and eastern Europe), Škoda works (manufacturer of rail vehicles), Panasonic (electronics), Tatra (Heavy truck manufacturer), Acelor Mittal (Metallurgy), Avast (Software), PPF (largest Central European investment group) and many others.

The key minerals mined are black and brown coal, clay, graphite, limestone and other building materials. Uranium deposits are found near the village of Lower. In South Moravia, oil and natural gas are extracted, but larger amounts are imported from Russia. Since one third of the country is covered with forest, wood is also an important export.

Cereals (wheat, barley, maize), potatoes, sugar beets, poppy seeds, other flax crops, and canola are grown. Hops, fruit growing and viticulture are also important. The basis of livestock is cattle, pigs and poultry, as well as beekeeping or freshwater fish (especially carp).

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    Henry David Thoreau (1817–1862)

    I’m neither Czech nor Slovak ... I’m still trying to figure out who I am. I think I’m Jewish. But first I want to be human.
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