Once part of Czechoslovakia, a central European communist state in 1948–1989, the Czech Republic peacefully dissolved its union with Slovakia in 1993. It joined the EU in 2004.
Geography: Landlocked in central Europe. Bohemia, the western territory, is a plateau surrounded by mountains. Moravia, in the east, is characterized by hills and lowlands.
Climate: Cool, sometimes cold winters and warm summer months, which bring most of the annual rainfall.
People and Society: Secular and urban society, with high divorce rates. Czechs make up the vast majority of the population, while the next largest group are Moravians. The 300,000 Slovaks left after partition are now permitted dual citizenship. Ethnic tensions are few, but there is widespread hostility toward the Roma minority. A new commercial elite is emerging along-side post-communist entrepreneurs.
The Economy: Traditional heavy industries (machinery, iron, car-making) have been successfully privatized. Prague attracts tourists. Skilled workforce. Will join euro in 2013 at earliest.
Insight: Charles University in Prague was founded in the 13th century
Official Name: Czech Republic
Date of Formation: 1993
opulation: 10.4 million
Total Area: 30,450 sq. miles (78,866 sq. km)
Density: 341 people per sq. mile
Languages: Czech*, Slovak, Hungarian
Religions: Roman Catholic 39%, atheist 38%, other 18%, Protestant 3%, Hussite 2%
Ethnic Mix: Czech 90%, other 4%, Moravian 4%, Slovak 2%
Government: Parliamentary system
Currency: Czech koruna = 100 haleru