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General overview

  • Area: 25,200 mi2 (65,300 km2)
  • Population: 3,043,429 inhab. (2011 est.); 2,793,986 inhab. (2019 est.)
  • Capital: Vilnius
    20 per cent of Lithuania’s population (570,806 in 1 January 2019) lives in the capital city Vilnius. Vilnius founded in 1323. Vilnius is classified as a Gamma global city according to GaWC studies. Vilnius Old Town is one of the biggest in Eastern Europe, it is declared a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 1994.
  • Principal urban areas and number of inhabitants: 10 counties are subdivided into 60 municipalities including 10 county cities or towns: Vilnius, Kaunas, Klaipėda, Šiauliai, Panevėžys, Alytus, Telšiai, Marijampolė, Utena and Tauragė.
    About two-thirds of the total population live in urban areas.
    On 1 March 2011, 103 cities and towns of the country were inhabited by 2 031.2 thousand (66.7 per cent of the total population of the country), 16 762 rural populated localities – 1 012.2 thousand (33.3 per cent) people. As of 2018, 67.1% of the total population lives in urban areas (population 1,878,304) and 32.9% in rural areas (population 922,434).
    On 1 March 2011, in each of the four cities – Vilnius, Kaunas, Klaipėda and Šiauliai – the population exceeded 100 thousand (54.8 per cent of the total urban population). In 2011, the number of inhabitants recorded in Panevėžys city was lower than 100 thousand (99.7 thousand) (in 2001, 119.7 thousand).
    17 towns were with the population 10 thousand and more, the total population amounted to 228140 (11.2 per cent of the total urban population).
    In one-third of towns with the population of less than 2 thousand, the total population amounted to just 38.1 thousand (1.9 per cent of the total urban population).
  • Official language and other recognised languages: Lithuanian (official), Russian, Polish, Belarusian, Ukrainian, other.
  • Borders: Lithuania borders Latvia, Poland, Russia and Belarus.
  • National or ethnic composition: In 2011, Lithuania was inhabited by people of 154 ethnicities (in 2001, 115). Lithuanians made up 84.2 per cent (2 million 561 thousand), Poles – 6.6 per cent (200.3 thousand), Russians – 5.8 per cent (176.9 thou-sand), Belarusians – 1.2 per cent (36.2 thousand), Ukrainians – 0.5 per cent (16.4 thousand), people of other ethnicities – 0.6 per cent (19.3 thousand).
  • Date of independence: February 16, 1918 (from Soviet Union: March 11, 1990).

Article 5 of the Law on Religious Communities and Associations of the Republic of Lithuania No I-1057 of 4 October 1995 established that the state recognises nine traditional religious communities and associations existing in Lithuania, which comprise a part of the historical, spiritual and social heritage of Lithuania: Roman Catholic, Greek Catholic, Evangelical Lutheran, Evangelical Reformed, Orthodox, Old Believer, Judaistic, Sunni Muslim and Karaite.
In 2011, the biggest religious denominations were: Roman Catholic, Orthodox, Old Believer, Evangelical Lutheran, Evangelical Reformed.

D 13 July 2021    ARasa Pranskevičiūtė-Amoson

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