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Lithuania

Country of Lithuania Flag

Capital: Vilnius

Population: 3,525,761

Brief History of Lithuania:

Lithuania was originally inhabited by Baltic tribes but they were united in 1236 by Mindaugas, the first King of Lithuania. The kingdom of Lithuania grew over the next hundred years and, by the end of the 14th century, was the largest country in Europe. In 1385, Lithuania united with Poland and under King Vytautas the kingdom reached the height of its size and power. The kingdom of Lithuania and Poland lasted until 1795, when it was broken up and divided amongst surrounding countries.

After World War I, Lithuania once again became an independent country, however, it was absorbed by the Soviet Union at the start of World War II. Upon the collapse of the Soviet Union in 1990, Lithuania declared its independence. It became a member of the European Union in 2004.



Country of Lithuania Map

The Geography of Lithuania

Total Size: 65,200 square km

Size Comparison: slightly larger than West Virginia

Geographical Coordinates: 56 00 N, 24 00 E

World Region or Continent: Europe

General Terrain: lowland, many scattered small lakes, fertile soil

Geographical Low Point: Baltic Sea 0 m

Geographical High Point: Juozapines Kalnas 293.6 m

Climate: transitional, between maritime and continental; wet, moderate winters and summers

Major cities: VILNIUS (capital) 546,000 (2009), Kaunas

The People of Lithuania

Type of Government: parliamentary democracy

Languages Spoken: Lithuanian (official) 82%, Russian 8%, Polish 5.6%, other and unspecified 4.4% (2001 census)

Independence: 11 March 1990 (independence declared from Soviet Union); 6 September 1991 (Soviet Union recognizes Lithuania's independence)

National Holiday: Independence Day, 16 February (1918); note - 16 February 1918 is the date Lithuania declared its independence from Soviet Russia and established its statehood; 11 March 1990 is the date it declared its independence from the Soviet Union

Nationality: Lithuanian(s)

Religions: Roman Catholic 79%, Russian Orthodox 4.1%, Protestant (including Lutheran and Evangelical Christian Baptist) 1.9%, other or unspecified 5.5%, none 9.5% (2001 census)

National Symbol: mounted knight known as Vytis (the Chaser)

National Anthem or Song: Tautiska giesme (The National Song)

Economy of Lithuania

Major Industries: metal-cutting machine tools, electric motors, television sets, refrigerators and freezers, petroleum refining, shipbuilding (small ships), furniture making, textiles, food processing, fertilizers, agricultural machinery, optical equipment, electronic components, computers, amber jewelry

Agricultural Products: grain, potatoes, sugar beets, flax, vegetables; beef, milk, eggs; fish

Natural Resources: peat, arable land, amber

Major Exports: mineral products 23%, textiles and clothing 16%, machinery and equipment 11%, chemicals 6%, wood and wood products 5%, foodstuffs 5% (2001)

Major Imports: mineral products, machinery and equipment, transport equipment, chemicals, textiles and clothing, metals

Currency: litas (LTL)

National GDP: $61,600,000,000




** Source for population (2012 est.) and GDP (2011 est.) is CIA World Factbook.

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