The President signed reform of financing of schools, where payments to schools will be made based on the number of lessons taught, instead of the number of pupils attending the schools. It also promotes cooperation between vocational schools and businesses.
On April 1, amendment to the Act Employment and amendment to the Act on International Cooperation in Tax Administration took effect. Anti-tax-evasion measures include the areas of preliminary tax decisions and transfer pricing and will be applicable to groups with consolidated revenues exceeding 750mil EUR per year (CZK 20.3bn, source: epravo.cz).
Extensive amendment to the Bankruptcy Act will take effect on 1 July 2017. More (in Czech).
The Chamber of Deputies has been reviewing the Canada-EU Comprehensive Economic and Trade Agreement CETA. The Senate approved the ratification at its session on 9 March. The April session of the Chamber of Deputies started on 4 April.
The Chamber of Deputies and the Senate have been debating the Paris Agreement.
From the sessions of the Senate
The Government proposed a bill summarizing changes to tax laws after 1 January 2017. The Chamber passed the bill, but the Senate returned it with change proposals. The Chamber outvoted the Senate and passed the bill in its original version on 4 April.
The Chamber of Deputies passed draft amendment to the Act on the support of R&D and Innovations (bill no. 960). The aim of the proposal is to define “eligible costs” and ”project of R&D and innovations” more clearly to better meet the purpose of the act. The Government expressed disapproval with the draft bill. The bill will be reviewed by the Senate. The next session of the Senate will be held on 19 April.
The Chamber of Deputies passed a bill proposing exemptions from the Act on Registry of Contracts (bill no. 699). The material proposes exemption for state-owned Budějovický Budvar n.p. from the obligation to disclose (both sales and purchase) contracts. More such exemptions were included and the bill was practically „de-boned“, i.e lost its purpose, one of its authors says. The bill will be reviewed by the Senate.
At its session on 18 May, the Government approved draft amendment to the Act on Sickness Insurance (bill no. 821) allowing for paid paternity leave, among others. The Chamber of Deputies passed the bill on 24 February. The bill will be reviewed by the Senate.
From the sessions of the Chamber of Deputies
Draft amendment to the Act on the Residence of Foreigners in the Czech Republic had its second reading on 22 February. The bill no. 990 proposes, among others, the introduction of the so-called "foreign investor card", a special type of a long-term residence permit and improved rules for employees-foreigners posted within a corporation. Read more in an article by Radio Praha and in a summary (in English) by Petyovsky & Partners here. The bill is being reviewed by the Chamber committees.
The draft Act on compensation of damage incurred by breach of competition rules had its first reading on 14 March and is being reviewed by the Chamber committees (bill no. 991).
The draft amendment to the Act on Cybersecurity (bill no. 984) had its second reading on 14 March, change proposals were submitted.
The draft amendment to the Construction Act (bill no. 927) had its second reading in the Chamber of Deputies on 28 February, 100 change proposals were submitted, but many of them are overlapping.
The Chamber Committees have been reviewing draft amendment to the Act on the Czech National Bank (bill no. 1009) proposing that the Czech National Bank’s recommendation on mortgage parameters to banks, currently non-binding, will become binding.
The Chamber of Deputies received draft proposal of Act on eHealth and draft amendment to the Act on Health Services (bill 1043) that deal with issues related to technology use in health care. One of the goals is to establish the National eHealth Centre. The Government expressed disapproval with the draft proposal due to high costs.
Representatives of the Liberecky region submitted draft amendment to the Act on Online Sales Registration (EET, bill no. 846) to the Chamber of Deputies and the Government. The bill suggests that EET could apply only to VAT payers. Another proposal bill no.792 by a group of MPs suggests excluding small entrepreneurs, non-VAT payers. Another proposal, bill no. 867, suggests exemptions for farmers selling their home-grown products at farmers markets. Another bill proposing EET act amendment
The Chamber submitted to the Government draft amendment to the Labor Code (bill no. 1008) written by a group of MPs proposing the introduction of the institute of nursing leave. The material reacts to the ageing of the population and the need to adapt the current law to the challenges employers and employees are facing. The Government expressed disapproval. The Chamber of Deputies will debate a related draft amendment to the Sickness Insurance Act (bill no. 1029). .
At its session on 24 August, the Government approved draft amendment to the Labor Code submitted by the Ministry of Labor and Social Affairs; proposing changes related to senior managerial employees (More details in a summary by Weinhold Legal here (in English), regulation of homeworking, teleworking, contracts for work performed outside an employment relationship, or prevention from stress at workplace, among others. The bill no. 903 is being reviewed by the Chamber Committees, change proposals are being submitted..
On 24 August, the Government passed draft amendment to the Act on Employment. The purpose of the amendment is to regulate temporary employment and job agencies.The bill no. 911 had its second reading on 1 March and is being reviewed by the Chamber Committees; change proposals were submitted.
The Senate’s draft amendment to the Labor Code suggests eliminating the institute of "karenční doba" related to coverage of the sickness insurance in the first three days of sickness of employees. (bill no. 744). There has been an ongoing debate within the tripartite (the government, employers and trade unions) on this issue.
The Chamber of Deputies has also been discussing retirement age (suggested age of 65). More.
On 18 December 2015, draft amendment to the Act on Elections to the Parliament of the Czech Republic was submitted to MPs and the Government. The bill no. 676 proposes rules for correspondence vote. The Government expressed neutral view.
On 18 October, the Government submitted to the Chamber of Deputies draft Act on measures to reduce the cost of deploying high-speed electronic communications networks (bill no. 936). Construction works costs account for the highest (up to 80%) share of the total costs, the material says. The aim of the bill is to introduce rules, a minimum standard, from the very first phase of the process to minimize inefficiencies of electronic communications networks deployment. These rules could accelerate the process of e-government implementation. The bill had its second reading on 24 February, change proposals were submitted.
From the sessions of the Government
At its session on 8 March, the Government passed draft amendment to the Act on Electronic Communications that aims, among others, at lowering the price of mobile data use. Operators argue that the effect of the legislation will be just the opposite. Also, the Government approved updated Action Plan for the Development of Digital Market in the Czech Republic.
At its session on 13 March, the Government approved draft amendment to the Act on Banks. The bill 1061 proposes improved sharing of information on cyber attacks among relevant stakeholders on the financial market.
At its session on 22 March, the Government passed measures in the area of public procurement, including definition of public procurements in the IT sector or modified rules in the case of procurements without prior negotiation (jednací řízení bez uveřejnění).
After the session on 29 March, PM Bohuslav Sobotka stated that the Government will focus more on the legislative proposals that are currently in the pipeline in the Parliament rather than drafting new proposals.