Country: Republic of Latvia (Latvijas Republika)
Climate: Temperate, with significant seasonal variations in temperature. Warm summers. Short springs and autumns relatively mild. Very long winters (October to April), with temperatures under extreme zero (-30 degrees).
Location: At the eastern coast of the Baltic Sea, borders in the north on Estonia, in the south on Lithuania, in the east on Russia and in the southeast on Belarus.
Area: 64.559 sq km
Capital: Riga (713 016 inhabitants, downward)
Population: 2,067,800 inhabitants (62% Latvians and Russians, 27%, 11% other nationalities)
Official Language: Latvian; widespread Russian.
Religions: Evangelical Lutheran, Roman Catholic, Russian Orthodox, Jewish Community, German Lutheran.
Politics, Culture and Education
Education and culture have traditionally high priority in the country. The Latvian traditions are deeply cared for, since they are a source of national pride and identity. As a proof of it, the independence movement of the 1980s is known as the “Singing Revolution”. Although there are currently not many existing projects between Spain and Latvia, there is a good connection through direct cooperations between Spanish and Latvian institutions like Instituto Cervantes. In this institutions activities such as films, theater, music, literature and language courses are offered to native Latvians and Spaniards, who want to learn Latvian. Despite the small number of Spaniards living there, it is always more common to study the spanish language, and its assessment in the country and institutions is increasing.
In 2003, Latvia had 10 public education centers, where Spanish was taught to students as a second language. Since then, more and more young people are interested in the culture and have a good vision regarding the language and students. The current cooperation in culture and education between Spain and Latvia is increasing. Several Spanish universities have already signed agreements with the main Latvian universities, and the number of Spanish Erasmus students who choose Latvia as a destination has increased.