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Basic Facts
Country name conventional long form: Republic of Latvia
conventional short form: Latvia
local long form: Latvijas Republika
local short form: Latvija
former: Latvian Soviet Socialist Republic
Gevernment typeparliamentary democracy
Capital name: Riga
geographic coordinates: 56 57 N, 24 06 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
Flag descriptionthree horizontal bands of maroon (top), white (half-width), and maroon
CurrencyLatvian lat (LVL)
Internet country code.lv
Ports and terminalsRiga, Ventspils
Agriculture productsgrain, sugar beets, potatoes, vegetables; beef, pork, milk, eggs; fish
Industriesbuses, vans, street and railroad cars; synthetic fibers, agricultural machinery, fertilizers, washing machines, radios, electronics, pharmaceuticals, processed foods, textiles; note - dependent on imports for energy and raw materials
Geography
LocationEastern Europe, bordering the Baltic Sea, between Estonia and Lithuania
Coordinates57 00 N, 25 00 E
ContinentEurope
Area total: 64,589 sq km
land: 63,589 sq km
water: 1,000 sq km
Boundaries total: 1,368 km
border countries: Belarus 167 km, Estonia 343 km, Lithuania 576 km, Russia 282 km
Coastline531 km
Climatemaritime; wet, moderate winters
Terrainlow plain
Natural resourcespeat, limestone, dolomite, amber, hydropower, wood, arable land
Natural hazardsNA
People
Population2,274,735 (July 2006 est.)
Ethnic groupsLatvian 57.7%, Russian 29.6%, Belarusian 4.1%, Ukrainian 2.7%, Polish 2.5%, Lithuanian 1.4%, other 2% (2002)
ReligionsLutheran, Roman Catholic, Russian Orthodox
LanguagesLatvian (official) 58.2%, Russian 37.5%, Lithuanian and other 4.3% (2000 census)

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