Speaker - Vaclav Klaus

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Vaclav Klaus was born in the Vinohrady district of Prague on July 19, 1941. He spent his childhood and youth in the neighborhood of Tylovo namesti.

He studied at the Prague School of Economics (majoring in the Economics of Foreign Trade and graduating in 1963), and economics became his lifelong specialist field. He took advantage of the relative thaw in Czechoslovak public life at that time to study in Italy (1966) and the USA (1969). As a research worker at the Institute of Economics of the Czech Academy of Sciences, he completed a PhD in Economics in 1968.

In 1970, he was forced to abandon his research career for political reasons and left to work for many years at the Czechoslovak State Bank. He returned to an academic post at the Forecasting Institute of the Czech Academy of Sciences in late 1987.

He entered politics immediately after 17th November 1989, but he did not lose his contacts with the world of economics. He continued his lectures and published occasionally and in 1991, he was appointed Assistant Professor of Economics at Charles University. In 1995, he was appointed Professor of Finance at the Prague School of Economics.

Vaclav Klaus started his political career in December 1989, when he became Federal Minister of Finance. In October 1991, he was also appointed Deputy Prime Minister of the Czecho-Slovak Federation. In late 1990, he became Chairman of what was then the strongest political entity in the country - Civic Forum. After its demise in April 1991, he co-founded the Civic Democratic Party, and was its Chairman from the outset until December 2002. He won the parliamentary elections with this party in 1992 and became the Prime Minister of the Czech Republic. It was in this position that he took part in the peaceful division of Czechoslovakia and the foundation of an independent Czech Republic. In 1996, he successfully defended his position as Prime Minister in the elections to the Chamber of Deputies, but he resigned after the break-up of the government coalition in November 1997. After the early elections of 1998, he became the Chairman of the Chamber of Deputies for a four-year term of office.

On February 28, 2003, Vaclav Klaus was elected President of the Czech Republic. Vaclav Klaus is married to economist Livia Klausova and has five grandchildren and two sons: Vaclav is the headmaster of a private grammar school in Prague and Jan works as a financial analyst.

2 Programs

Uncommon Knowledge: Vaclav Klaus

11.06.09 | 00:28:57 min | 35 comments

Vaclav Klaus: Environmentalism in Europe

03.09.07 | 00:51:34 min | 0 comments