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Švejnar, Jan


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2 articles of this author have been cited in the European Press Review so far.


Blog Aktuálně.cz - Czech Republic | 23/04/2010

Jan Švejnar on the Czech Republic's poor image in Europe

The social democrat Miloslav Vlček, speaker of the Czech Chamber of Deputies, announced his resignation from politics on Thursday in the wake of dubious money dealings. His case is typical of the poor image of the Czech Republic in Europe, writes economist and former presidential candidate Jan Švejnar in his blog on the news portal Aktualne.cz: "Ours is one of the top spots regarding theft in department stores, the consumption of alcohol and certain drugs and the number of traffic accidents. Corruption is growing and intensifying. Our tax system is the second most complictated in the EU. Construction costs for our motorways are far too high. State contracts serve to enrich private individuals, who often have a strong hand in politics. These scandals must come to an end. ... The Czech political scene is extremely sick. ... Our activity in the EU acts as a cultivating factor and can aid our recovery. Until now however we have not yet become accustomed to our European role, and few of our partners take our word seriously."

Aktuálně.cz - Czech Republic | 14/04/2010

Jan Švejnar on the Czech Republic's vulnerable democracy

The Czech Republic could have made more progress in the 20 years since the Velvet Revolution, writes economist and former presidential candidate Jan Švejnar in his blog on the Aktuálně.cz portal: "Gone are the times when US and English students commonly wrote essays on the uniqueness of Czechoslovakian democracy between the two world wars. We have achieved a lot since 1989, but less than we could have from a historical perspective. Countries like Slovenia, Slovakia and Poland had a worse starting position and have nonetheless caught up with or overtaken us. ... I am convinced that the Czech Republic needs a change in political style. It needs a new generation of politicians. We need to open the door to politics to people who don't just want to get rich but want to serve their country. ... The Czech Republic needs its citizens' trust in their political representation to be restored; it needs a new 'social contract' that will inject fresh blood into our too easily paralysed democracy."

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