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The Czech Chamber of Commerce is the largest and the most representative business association in the Czech Republic. It has more than 16,000 members organized in 59 regional chambers and in nearly 124 branch associations.
The Czech Chamber of Commerce is the only legal representative of Czech entrepreneurs. Its activity is set by law – in Act No. 301/1992 Coll. on the Czech Chamber of Commerce and the Agrarian Chamber of the Czech Republic. The aforementioned legal standard states that the Czech Chamber of Commerce protects the interests of Czech entrepreneurs from all regions and from all sectors except agriculture, food and forestry (this activity is performed by the Agrarian Chamber of the Czech Republic).
The Czech Chamber of Commerce’s mission is to create opportunities for entrepreneurship, to promote and support measures that contribute to the development of business environment in the Czech Republic and thus to the overall economic stability of the state.
The current Chamber of Commerce closely follows the activities of not only pre-war trade and industrial chambers, trade associations and other self-governing business associations, but its history is also closely related to the history of the chambers of commerce of the Austro-Hungarian Empire. Those chambers were established on the basis of Act No. 122 of the Reich Code dated back to March 18th, 1850, when all chambers of commerce were gradually established throughout the territory of Austria-Hungary.
In the trade field, the Chamber refers to the historical legacy of medieval guilds, whose roots date back to the 14th century, to the reign of Charles IV., and even earlier. At that time, the first guilds began to emerge in the cities of the Czech kingdom, associating and representing the interests of individual craft professions. Masons, stonemasons, tailors, shoemakers, cart-wrights, plate armour makers, and potters had their own guild. It is precisely the protection and representation of the interests of craft trades which links the former guilds with today’s Chamber of Commerce’s mission. Modern guilds are part of the Chamber.
The present form and structure of the Chamber is determined by the aforementioned Act No. 301/1992 Coll. The President of the Czech Chamber of Commerce is the statutory head of the Chamber. This post is currently occupied by Mr. Zdeněk Zajíček, who was elected by the Assembly of the Czech Chamber of Commerce, which means he was directly elected by members of the Chamber. The working body is the presidium which is made up of the President and Vice-Presidents. Each of the Vice Presidents is entrusted with a responsibility within which he or she is therefore engaged and carries out his or her activities in the Chamber. The Managing Authority of the Czech Chamber of Commerce is the Board of Directors. The Supervisory Board is established as a control body, while the Conciliation Commission’s main task is to resolve any disputes between the members. The term of office is three years.
The Office of the Czech Chamber of Commerce is the executive body of the Chamber. The Secretary General, who is appointed and dismissed by the Board of Directors of the Chamber, is responsible for its activities. The current Secretary General is Ivana Hrdinová. The Office ensures through its Departments the fulfilment of tasks arising from the competence of the Chamber according to the law and according to the current priorities and tasks, approved by the Board of Directors or by the Assembly of the Czech Chamber of Commerce.
The Czech Chamber of Commerce formulates the Action Plan of the Czech Chamber of Commerce every year or, in other words, it formulates the priorities of the Czech Chamber of Commerce for the given period. The Action Plan is a set of key measures advocated by the leadership of the Czech Chamber of Commerce in relation to state or local administrations. It reflects the main interest of the membership which is to improve the conditions of the business environment.
The Czech Chamber of Commerce is represented by the regional and district chambers. You can find the Chamber of Commerce in each region – in more than 70 cities in the Czech Republic. The regional chambers provide support to entrepreneurs, particularly in advising in and consulting issues related to business activity. They also issue certified statements of selected state administration agendas, support education, and assist the companies when entering foreign markets.