Robust democracy, economy, rich cultural heritage
Part of Czechoslovakia until the “velvet divorce” in January 1993, the Czech Republic landlocked state has a robust democratic tradition, a highly-developed economy, and a rich cultural heritage.
It emerged from over 40 years of Communist rule in 1990, and was the first former Eastern Bloc state to acquire the status of a developed economy. It joined the European Union in 2004 and it has been Schengen area member since 2007.
In 1989, as the curtain was coming down on communism in the Kremlin, the dissident playwright Vaclav Havel emerged as the figurehead of the country’s “velvet revolution” and became the first president of post-communist Czechoslovakia.
The most important sectors of the Czech Republic’s economy in 2014 were industry (32.6 %), wholesale and retail trade, transport, accommodation and food services (17.9 %) and public administration, defence, education, human health and social work activities (14.9 %).
The Czech Republic’s main export partners are Germany, Slovakia and Poland while its main import partners are Germany, Poland and Slovakia.
In addition to its developed industrial economy, the Czech Republic now attracts tourists to some of the finest Baroque, Art Nouveau and Cubist buildings in Europe.
Prague, City of a Hundred Spires is a UNESCO monument and one of the most beautiful cities in the world.
The Old Town Hall with the famous Prague Astronomical Clock. The winding lanes of the Jewish Quarter, which you know from the novels of Franz Kafka, steeped in the legend of the Golem. Cafes enticing you to come and have a seat, boutiques and sight-seeing cruises on the Vltava. The Gothic Charles Bridge and Church of St. Nicholas in the Lesser Town, the most beautiful Baroque church in Prague. The Palace Gardens set away from the bustle of the city, Petrin with a lookout tower reminiscent of a small Eiffel Tower and Prague Castle … Each of Prague’s districts has its own characteristic atmosphere and unique charm.
Apart from the historical centre of Prague, there are 12 UNESCO sites in the Czech Republic. Ceský Krumlov, Kutná Hora and Telc include the Functionalist Villa Tugendhat in Brno designed by the architect Ludwig Mies van der Rohe, the historical gardens and chateau in Kromeríž and the Pilgrimage Church of St. John of Nepomuk steeped in symbolism in Ždár nad Sázavou.
Moreover, West Bohemia’s Plzen became the Czech cultural mecca this year. More than 600 events in various fields and genres – ranging from contemporary circus to exhibitions, concerts, theatre, dance, education projects and large-scale events in the public space – were and are held in Plzen from 17th January 2015 until the end of the yearunder the auspices of the European Capital of Culture 2015 project.