28.03.2022 12:24 | Conversation
The approach of the Czech state to lower fuel prices? “He will obviously test how much we can still endure and he will discuss the extraordinary situation indefinitely. As a result, the middle class will pay for it again,” criticizes economist Ladislav Žák. According to him, Ukraine is “deeply uninteresting for the Western Europe, they are just told that the Russians don’t come to them,” he told ParlamentníListům.cz. Germans are only interested in business and, according to Žák, we should realize that we have l fall here in 6 months.
US President Joe Biden’s speech rather disappointed Ukrainians. The head of the White House made it clear that he would defend NATO’s interests, but he was certainly not going to deploy American troops in Ukraine. Should we expect anything else?
No, definitely not. But note that for some politicians from Western Europe (see France), it is on the contrary of too sharp a caliber, or of rhetoric, that the American president presented himself.
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Did you sense any secondary economic subtext there, as Biden seeks an attractive market for US liquefied gas, for example, and talks about Europe’s dependence on Russian fossil fuels?
So, of course, each state pursues its economic interests. It is legitimate. But if there was an economically driven “undercurrent” then it was not strong at all. From my point of view, the main message was that the elimination process, and especially its consequences, would be long and costly, so that Europe would not get anything for free. And that’s why you have to be able to sacrifice something. Long story short, he just says that if we don’t wash, then no one will fight for us.
Let’s dwell specifically on Germany – to what extent will its political departure from Russia, which we have been monitoring for 3 weeks, be reflected in the question of Russian gas imports?
You know, no one has convinced me yet that “old Western Europe”, let’s say the former Frankish Empire, is really serious. For them, Ukraine is deeply uninteresting, they are simply told that the Russian does not come to them.
But above all, Germany can’t afford it because of its environmental ambitions, don’t you think?
But he can afford it! Why not? I can afford something or I can – and I should at least try. I can lose, yes, but it’s about showing that I can defend myself and that I have the will to defend myself. And I don’t see anything like that here – and it’s not just about Germany.
So to answer your original question: I don’t expect any gas supply disruption from Russia to Germany – certainly not from the Germans, who are obviously only interested in business.
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Excuse me, and you don’t think Americans are interested?
But of course he is also interested, but with all due respect, I would say that the United States is a much more valuable country, although I don’t like the word Germany.
About 40% of Czechia’s dependence on gas and oil imports from Russia is declared, and Minister Lipavský assured us that we don’t even know that. But when fuel prices rise 30% in 10 days, almost everyone except the minister will know. Is it really only given by the war in Ukraine or is it partly also an associated pastime of Czech speculators?
Undoubtedly, the Czech man is extremely enterprising in some respects, and when the opportunity presents itself, he will seize it by the traps – just like those gas station attendants, or as I would rather say the old pastor. But there are basically three things: the exchange rate goes down, the price on the stock market goes up, and then there is still room for the golden Czech hands not to fall out of practice. Moreover, when the state behaves in a totally indecisive way and is unable to intervene vigorously.
Yes, you said in a previous interview: “The state needs to do something about this to convince people that they are behind them. Capturing the maximum price of 50 CZK per liter of gasoline seems to me to be a sensible solution which could last until the summer, meaning it would at least give people some certainty. “How do you assess the current actions and approach of the state? to this problem?
The approach cannot be evaluated because the state has done absolutely nothing. He will obviously test how much more we can endure and discuss the situation endlessly. And suddenly, the middle class will pay it again, if there is still one left, because it is clear that the middle class will very soon become an endangered species in our country.
Everything increases, not only fuel and energy, which of course also contribute to increasing the price, but cereals and other crops and raw materials are suddenly processed – so I ask again if we are generally so east, including Ukraine.
Orientation to the east is another matter, but you have to realize that in 6 months we have autumn here, the energy demand will be huge again and you have to decide which amenities and where to choose in the box and what one is, for example, a certain modification of production capable of ensuring itself.
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author: Tomas Prochazka