Tag Archives: Ukraine

The Naturalisation procedure

Nadzezhda and her husband, a non-citizen of Latvia.

Non-citizens are able to apply for Latvian citizenship provided that they have been permanent residents of the country for, at least, five years. They have also to demonstrate Latvian language proficiency, pass both Latvia’s history and constitution tests and know the Latvian national anthem. One more thing

As I previously wrote, some 135,000 people have naturalised since 1995. The naturalisation rates reached its height over two periods; 1999 – 2001 and 2003 – 2005. However, the rates have fallen off substantially during the last few years.

Nadzezhda holds a Latvian passport, though she was born in the Ukrainian city of Lviv. She arrived in Latvia for the first time in 1985. Her desire to “feel more integrated in the country” and be able to vote and travel freely, led her to apply for citizenship and naturalise.

“I failed the writing exam the first time I apply for citizenship. I found it quite difficult to be honest,” said Nadzezhda.

She then attended to a language course to improve her Latvian and with the help of her daughter, who was at primary school, manage to pass the exam and naturalise.

She added; “I wanted to be a full right citizen of the country where I live and feel more integrated in its society. Besides, I wanted my daughter to have a Latvian passport, so she could feel at the same level like full right citizens.

“I did not have many problems when I was a non-citizen. As long as you know the language, things are fine. However, after acquiring Latvian citizenship I felt more confident in myself; I can take part in anything I want to as a full right citizen.

“I think the naturalisation procedure should be easier. There are hundreds of people who, like me, have been living in the country for many many years, paying the same taxes and contributing to the country’s development and the Government should ease the procedure for them.”



Filed under Citizenship, Human side, Language, Project

Demographics of Latvia

Children in Latvia's national costume (Latvia Institute)

Latvia is a multicultural country. The statistics released by the Government at the beginning of 2011 prove it.

Below you can find the largest groups of citizens living in the Baltic country by January 1 2011.


Latvia: 1,854,684

Non-citizens: 326,735

Russia: 36,638

Lithuania: 3,754

Ukraine: 3,198

Belarus: 2,035

Germany: 1,174

Estonia: 948

Bulgaria: 591

US: 533

Poland: 509


Latvijas iedzīvotāju sadalījums pēc valstiskās piederības (full description of the division of Latvia’s society)


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Filed under Citizenship, Ethnicity