Geographic and Governmental Profile of Lithuania

Background
Lithuanian lands were united under MINDAUGAS in 1236; over the next century, through alliances and conquest, Lithuania extended its territory to include most of present-day Belarus and Ukraine. By the end of the 14th century Lithuania was the largest state in Europe. An alliance with Poland in 1386 led the two countries into a union through the person of a common ruler. In 1569, Lithuania and Poland formally united into a single dual state, the Polish-Lithuanian Commonwealth. This entity survived until 1795 when its remnants were partitioned by surrounding countries. Lithuania regained its independence following World War I but was annexed by the USSR in 1940 - an action never recognized by the US and many other countries. On 11 March 1990, Lithuania became the first of the Soviet republics to declare its independence, but Moscow did not recognize this proclamation until September of 1991 (following the abortive coup in Moscow). The last Russian troops withdrew in 1993. Lithuania subsequently restructured its economy for integration into Western European institutions; it joined both NATO and the EU in the spring of 2004.
Location
Eastern Europe, bordering the Baltic Sea, between Latvia and Russia
Geographic coordinates
56 00 N, 24 00 E
Continent / Subcontinent
Europe
Area
total:
65,300 sq km
rank:
123
land:
62,680 sq km
water:
2,620 sq km
Area - comparative
slightly larger than West Virginia
Land boundaries
total:
1,574 km
border countries:
Belarus 680 km, Latvia 576 km, Poland 91 km, Russia (Kaliningrad) 227 km
Coastline
90 km
Maritime claims
territorial sea:
12 nm
Climate
transitional, between maritime and continental; wet, moderate winters and summers
Terrain
lowland, many scattered small lakes, fertile soil
Elevation extremes
lowest point:
Baltic Sea 0 m
highest point:
Aukstojas 294 m
Natural resources
peat, arable land, amber
Land use
arable land:
44.81%
permanent crops:
0.9%
other:
54.29% (2005)
Get Chart Code
Get Chart Code
Irrigated land
13.4 sq km (2003)
Total renewable water resources
24.5 cu km (2005)
Freshwater withdrawal (domestic/industrial/agricultural)
total:
3.33 cu km/yr (78%/15%/7%)
per capita:
971 cu m/yr (2003)
Natural hazards
NA
Environment - current issues
contamination of soil and groundwater with petroleum products and chemicals at military bases
Environment - international agreements
party to:
Air Pollution, Air Pollution-Nitrogen Oxides, Air Pollution-Persistent Organic Pollutants, Air Pollution-Sulphur 85, Air Pollution-Sulphur 94, Air Pollution-Volatile Organic Compounds, Biodiversity, Climate Change, Climate Change-Kyoto Protocol, Desertification, Endangered Species, Environmental Modification, Hazardous Wastes, Law of the Sea, Ozone Layer Protection, Ship Pollution, Wetlands
signed, but not ratified:
none of the selected agreements
Geography - note
fertile central plains are separated by hilly uplands that are ancient glacial deposits
Country name
conventional long form:
Republic of Lithuania
conventional short form:
Lithuania
local long form:
Lietuvos Respublika
local short form:
Lietuva
former:
Lithuanian Soviet Socialist Republic
Government type
parliamentary democracy
Capital
name:
Vilnius
geographic coordinates:
54 41 N, 25 19 E
time difference:
UTC+2 (7 hours ahead of Washington, DC during Standard Time)
daylight saving time:
+1hr, begins last Sunday in March; ends last Sunday in October
Administrative divisions
10 counties (apskritys, singular - apskritis); Alytaus, Kauno, Klaipedos, Marijampoles, Panevezio, Siauliu, Taurages, Telsiu, Utenos, Vilniaus
Independence
11 March 1990 (declared); 6 September 1991 (recognized by the Soviet Union); notable earlier dates: 6 July 1253 (coronation of MINDAUGAS, traditional founding date), 1 July 1569 (Polish-Lithuanian Commonwealth created)
National holiday
Independence Day, 16 February (1918); note - 16 February 1918 was the date Lithuania declared its independence from Soviet Russia and established its statehood; 11 March 1990 was the date it declared its independence from the Soviet Union
Constitution
adopted 25 October 1992; last amended 13 July 2004
Legal system
civil law system; legislative acts can be appealed to the constitutional court
International law organization participation
has not submitted an ICJ jurisdiction declaration; accepts ICCt jurisdiction
Suffrage
18 years of age; universal
Executive branch
chief of state:
President Dalia GRYBAUSKAITE (since 12 July 2009)
head of government:
Prime Minister Andrius KUBILIUS (since 27 November 2008)
cabinet:
Council of Ministers appointed by the president on the nomination of the prime minister
elections:
president elected by popular vote for a five-year term (eligible for a second term); election last held on 17 May 2009 (next to be held in May 2014); prime minister appointed by the president on the approval of the Parliament
election results:
Dalia GRYBAUSKAITE elected president; percent of vote - Dalia GRYBAUSKAITE 69.1%, Algirdas BUTKEVICIUS 11.8%, Valentinas MAZURONIS 6.2%, others 12.9%; Andrius KUBILIUS' government approved by Parliament 83-40 with 5 abstentions
Legislative branch
unicameral Parliament or Seimas (141 seats; 71 members elected by popular vote, 70 elected by proportional representation; members to serve four-year terms)
elections:
last held on 12 and 26 October 2008 (next to be held in October 2012)
election results:
percent of vote by party - TS-LKD 19.7%, TPP 15.1%, TT 12.7%, LSDP 11.7%, DP+J 9%, LRLS 5.7%, LCS 5.3%, LLRA 4.8%, LVLS 3.7%, NS 3.6%, other 8.7%; seats by faction - TS-LKD 44, LSDP 26, TPP 16, TT 15, LRLS 11, DP+J 10, LCS 8, LLRA 3, LVLS 3, NS 1, independent 4; note - seats by faction as of 25 January 2011 - TS-LKD 45, LSDP 24, TT 18, LCS and TPP 13, LRLS 13, Christian Party 10, DP 10, unaffiliated 7, vacant 1; note - TS-LKD, LRLS, and LCS form the ruling coalition
Judicial branch
Constitutional Court; Supreme Court; Court of Appeal; judges for all courts appointed by the president
Political parties and leaders
Christian party [Gediminas VAGNORIUS]; Civil Democracy Party or PDP [Algimantas MATULEVICIUS]; Electoral Action of Lithuanian Poles or LLRA [Valdemar TOMASZEVSKI]; Homeland Union - Lithuanian Christian Democrats or TS-LKD [Andrius KUBILIUS]; Labor Party or DP [Viktor USPASKICH]; Liberal and Center Union or LCS [Algis CAPLIKAS]; Liberal Movement or LS or LRLS [Eligijus MASIULIS]; Lithuanian Farmers' Union or LVLS or VLS [Ramunas KARBAUSKIS]; Lithuanian People's Party [Kazimiera PRUNSKIENE]; National Revival or TPP [Arunas VALINSKAS]; New Union (Social Liberal) or NS [Arturas PAULAUSKAS]; Political movement "Taip" (Yes) [Arturas ZUOKAS]; Order and Justice Party or TT [Rolandas PAKSAS]; Social Democratic Party or LSDP [Algirdas BUTKEVICIUS]; Tautininkai Union [Gintaras SONGAILA]
International organization participation
Australia Group, BA, BIS, CBSS, CD, CE, EAPC, EBRD, EIB, EU, FAO, IAEA, IBRD, ICAO, ICC, ICRM, IDA, IFC, IFRCS, ILO, IMF, IMO, Interpol, IOC, IOM, IPU, ISO, ITU, ITUC, MIGA, NATO, NIB, NSG, OAS (observer), OIF (observer), OPCW, OSCE, PCA, Schengen Convention, UN, UNCTAD, UNESCO, UNIDO, UNWTO, UPU, WCO, WHO, WIPO, WMO, WTO
Diplomatic representation in the US
chief of mission:
Ambassador Zygimantas PAVILIONIS
chancery:
2622 16th Street NW, Washington, DC 20009
telephone:
[1] (202) 234-5860
FAX:
[1] (202) 328-0466
consulate(s) general:
Chicago, New York
Diplomatic representation from the US
chief of mission:
Ambassador Anne E. DERSE
embassy:
Akmenu gatve 6, Vilnius, LT-03106
mailing address:
American Embassy, Akmenu Gatve 6, Vilnius LT-03106
telephone:
[370] (5) 266-5500
FAX:
[370] (5) 266-5510
Flag description
three equal horizontal bands of yellow (top), green, and red; yellow symbolizes golden fields, as well as the sun, light, and goodness; green represents the forests of the countryside, in addition to nature, freedom, and hope; red stands for courage and the blood spilled in defense of the homeland
National symbol(s)
mounted knight known as Vytis (the Chaser)
National anthem
name:
"Tautiska giesme" (The National Song)
lyrics/music:
Vincas KUDIRKA
adopted 1918, restored 1990; the anthem was written in 1898 while Lithuania was a part of Russia; it was banned during the Soviet occupation from 1940 to 1990
Data source 1: All Above textual data, maps and flags were extracted from The World Factbook which was prepared by the Central Intelligence Agency and made available on the following link: The World Factbook. Lebanese Economy Forum is not sponsered or affiliated, in any way, by the US Central Intelligence Agency
Data source 2: Plots and Charts are constructed using the world bank public data catalog which can be viewed by visiting the following link: World Bank Data Catalog. Lebanese Economy Forum is not sponsored or affiliated, in any way, by the worldbank

Comments are closed.