Country name:

Republic of Latvia

Capital:

Riga

Other large cities:

Daugavpils (113,000), Liepaja (88,000)

Location:

Eastern Europe, bordering the Baltic Sea, between Estonia and Lithuania

Area:

64,589 sq km

Land boundaries:

1,150 km. Bordering countries: Belarus 141 km, Estonia 339 km, Lithuania 453 km, Russia 217 km

Coastline:

531 km

Climate:

maritime, wet, moderate winters

Terrain:

low plain

Lowest point:

Highest point:

Baltic Sea 0 m
Gaizinkalns 312 m

Population:

2,245,423

Ethnic groups:

Latvian 57.7 %, Russian 29.6 %, Belarusian 4.1 %, Ukrainian 2.7 %, Polish 2.5 %, Lithuanian 1.4 %, other 2 % 

Religions:

Lutheran, Roman Catholic, Russian Orthodox

Languages:

Latvian, Lithuanian, Russian

Independence:

21 August 1991 (from the Soviet Union)

Constitution:

the 1991 Constitutional Law, which supplements the 1922 constitution, provides for basic rights and freedoms

Government type:

parliamentary democracy

Chief of state:

President Raimonds Vejonis 

Legislative branch:

unicameral Parliament (called Saeima)

Industries:

synthetic fibres, pharmaceuticals, buses, radios, vans, street and railroad cars, agricultural machinery, fertilizers, electronics, processed foods, washing machines, textiles

Agriculture:

sugar beets, pork, grain, milk, potatoes, vegetables, beef, eggs, fish

National holiday:

1 January: New Year's Day

March-April (in accordance with the Christian calendar): Easter

1 May: Convocation of the Constituent Assembly of the Republic of Latvia; Labour Day

4 May: Declaration of the Independence of the Republic of Latvia

23-24 June: Ligo Day and Jani (Midsummer)

18 May: Proclamation of the Republic of Latvia

25 December: Christmas Day

Currency:

Euro (EUR)

Fixed exchange rate:

1 EUR = 0.7080 LVL