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  • Introduction :: AUSTRIA

  • Once the center of power for the large Austro-Hungarian Empire, Austria was reduced to a small republic after its defeat in World War I. Following annexation by Nazi Germany in 1938 and subsequent occupation by the victorious Allies in 1945, Austria's status remained unclear for a decade. A State Treaty signed in 1955 ended the occupation, recognized Austria's independence, and forbade unification with Germany. A constitutional law that same year declared the country's "perpetual neutrality" as a condition for Soviet military withdrawal. The Soviet Union's collapse in 1991 and Austria's entry into the European Union in 1995 have altered the meaning of this neutrality. A prosperous, democratic country, Austria entered the EU Economic and Monetary Union in 1999.
  • Geography :: AUSTRIA

  • Central Europe, north of Italy and Slovenia
    47 20 N, 13 20 E
    total: 83,871 sq km
    land: 82,445 sq km
    water: 1,426 sq km
    slightly smaller than Maine
    total: 2,524 km
    border countries (8): Czech Republic 402 km, Germany 801 km, Hungary 321 km, Italy 404 km, Liechtenstein 34 km, Slovakia 105 km, Slovenia 299 km, Switzerland 158 km
    0 km (landlocked)
    none (landlocked)
    temperate; continental, cloudy; cold winters with frequent rain and some snow in lowlands and snow in mountains; moderate summers with occasional showers
    in the west and south mostly mountains (Alps); along the eastern and northern margins mostly flat or gently sloping
    lowest point: Neusiedler See 115 m
    highest point: Grossglockner 3,798 m
    oil, coal, lignite, timber, iron ore, copper, zinc, antimony, magnesite, tungsten, graphite, salt, hydropower
    agricultural land: 38.4%
    arable land 16.5%; permanent crops 0.8%; permanent pasture 21.1%
    forest: 47.2%
    other: 14.4% (2011 est.)
    1,170 sq km (2007)
    77.7 cu km (2011)
    total: 3.66 cu km/yr (18%/79%/3%)
    per capita: 452.4 cu m/yr (2008)
    landslides; avalanches; earthquakes
    some forest degradation caused by air and soil pollution; soil pollution results from the use of agricultural chemicals; air pollution results from emissions by coal- and oil-fired power stations and industrial plants and from trucks transiting Austria between northern and southern Europe
    party to: Air Pollution, Air Pollution-Nitrogen Oxides, Air Pollution-Persistent Organic Pollutants, Air Pollution-Sulfur 85, Air Pollution-Sulphur 94, Air Pollution-Volatile Organic Compounds, Antarctic Treaty, Biodiversity, Climate Change, Climate Change-Kyoto Protocol, Desertification, Endangered Species, Environmental Modification, Hazardous Wastes, Law of the Sea, Ozone Layer Protection, Ship Pollution, Tropical Timber 83, Tropical Timber 94, Wetlands, Whaling
    signed, but not ratified: none of the selected agreements
    landlocked; strategic location at the crossroads of central Europe with many easily traversable Alpine passes and valleys; major river is the Danube; population is concentrated on eastern lowlands because of steep slopes, poor soils, and low temperatures elsewhere
  • People and Society :: AUSTRIA

  • noun: Austrian(s)
    adjective: Austrian
    Austrians 91.1%, former Yugoslavs 4% (includes Croatians, Slovenes, Serbs, and Bosniaks), Turks 1.6%, German 0.9%, other or unspecified 2.4% (2001 census)
    German (official nationwide) 88.6%, Turkish 2.3%, Serbian 2.2%, Croatian (official in Burgenland) 1.6%, other (includes Slovene, official in South Carinthia, and Hungarian, official in Burgenland) 5.3% (2001 est.)
    Catholic 73.8% (includes Roman Catholic 73.6%, other Catholic .2%), Protestant 4.9%, Muslim 4.2%, Orthodox 2.2%, other 0.8% (includes other Christian), none 12%, unspecified 2% (2001 est.)
    8,223,062 (July 2014 est.)
    0-14 years: 13.6% (male 573,146/female 546,596)
    15-24 years: 11.6% (male 488,564/female 468,891)
    25-54 years: 42.9% (male 1,766,729/female 1,756,880)
    55-64 years: 12.7% (male 515,913/female 528,988)
    65 years and over: 19.2% (male 670,750/female 906,605) (2014 est.)
    population pyramid:
    total dependency ratio: 49.1%
    youth dependency ratio: 21.6%
    elderly dependency ratio: 27.6%
    potential support ratio: 3.6% (2014 est.)
    total: 44.3 years
    male: 43.2 years
    female: 45.3 years (2014 est.)
    0.01% (2014 est.)
    8.76 births/1,000 population (2014 est.)
    10.38 deaths/1,000 population (2014 est.)
    1.76 migrant(s)/1,000 population (2014 est.)
    urban population: 65.9% of total population (2014)
    rate of urbanization: 0.4% annual rate of change (2010-15 est.)
    VIENNA (capital) 1.743 million (2014)
    at birth: 1.05 male(s)/female
    0-14 years: 1.05 male(s)/female
    15-24 years: 1.04 male(s)/female
    25-54 years: 1.01 male(s)/female
    55-64 years: 0.95 male(s)/female
    65 years and over: 0.73 male(s)/female
    total population: 0.95 male(s)/female (2014 est.)
    28.5 (2011 est.)
    4 deaths/100,000 live births (2013 est.)
    total: 4.16 deaths/1,000 live births
    male: 5.01 deaths/1,000 live births
    female: 3.27 deaths/1,000 live births (2014 est.)
    total population: 80.17 years
    male: 77.25 years
    female: 83.24 years (2014 est.)
    1.43 children born/woman (2014 est.)
    note: percent of women aged 18-46 (2008/09)
    11% of GDP (2013)
    4.83 physicians/1,000 population (2011)
    7.6 beds/1,000 population (2011)
    urban: 100% of population
    rural: 100% of population
    total: 100% of population
    urban: 0% of population
    rural: 0% of population
    total: 0% of population (2012 est.)
    urban: 100% of population
    rural: 100% of population
    total: 100% of population
    urban: 0% of population
    rural: 0% of population
    total: 0% of population (2012 est.)
    20.1% (2014)
    5.8% of GDP (2011)
    total: 16 years
    male: 15 years
    female: 16 years (2012)
    total: 8.7%
    male: 8.8%
    female: 8.7% (2012 est.)
  • Government :: AUSTRIA

  • conventional long form: Republic of Austria
    conventional short form: Austria
    local long form: Republik Oesterreich
    local short form: Oesterreich
    note: the name Oesterreich means "eastern realm" or "eastern march" and dates back to the 10th century; the designation refers to the fact that Austria was the easternmost extension of Bavaria, and in fact of all the Germans; the word Austria is a Latinization of the German name
    federal republic
    name: Vienna
    geographic coordinates: 48 12 N, 16 22 E
    time difference: UTC+1 (6 hours ahead of Washington, DC, during Standard Time)
    daylight saving time: +1hr, begins last Sunday in March; ends last Sunday in October
    9 states (Bundeslaender, singular - Bundesland); Burgenland, Kaernten (Carinthia), Niederoesterreich (Lower Austria), Oberoesterreich (Upper Austria), Salzburg, Steiermark (Styria), Tirol (Tyrol), Vorarlberg, Wien (Vienna)
    12 November 1918 (republic proclaimed); notable earlier dates: 976 (Margravate of Austria established); 17 September 1156 (Duchy of Austria founded); 11 August 1804 (Austrian Empire proclaimed)
    National Day, 26 October (1955); note - commemorates the passage of the law on permanent neutrality
    several previous; latest adopted 1 October 1920, revised 1929, replaced May 1934 (authoritarian-corporate constitution), replaced by German Weimar constitution in 1938 following German annexation; latest reinstated 1 May 1945 (1920 constitution with 1929 revisions); amended many times, last in 2008 (2013)
    civil law system; judicial review of legislative acts by the Constitutional Court
    accepts compulsory ICJ jurisdiction; accepts ICCt jurisdiction
    16 years of age; universal
    chief of state: President Heinz FISCHER (SPOe) (since 8 July 2004)
    head of government: Chancellor Werner FAYMANN (SPOe) (since 2 December 2008); Vice Chancellor Reinhold MITTERLEHNER (since 1 September 2014)
    cabinet: Council of Ministers chosen by the president on the advice of the chancellor
    elections: president elected for a six-year term (eligible for a second term) by direct popular vote and formally sworn into office before the Federal Assembly or Bundesversammlung; presidential election last held on 25 April 2010 (next to be held on 25 April 2016); chancellor formally chosen by the president but determined by the coalition parties forming a parliamentary majority; vice chancellor chosen by the president on the advice of the chancellor
    election results: Heinz FISCHER reelected president; percent of vote - Heinz FISCHER 79.33%, Barbara ROSENKRANZ 15.24%, Rudolf GEHRING 5.43%
    note: government coalition - SPOe and OeVP
    description: bicameral Federal Assembly or Bundesversammlung consists of the Federal Council or Bundesrat (62 seats; members appointed by state parliaments with each state receiving 3 to 12 seats in proportion to its population; members serve 5- or 6-year terms) and the National Council or Nationalrat (183 seats; members directly elected in single-seat constituencies by proportional representation vote; members serve 5-year terms)
    elections: National Council - last held on 29 September 2013 (next to be held by September 2018)
    election results: National Council - percent of vote by party - SPOe 27.1%, OeVP 23.8%, FPOe 21.4%, Greens 11.5%, Team Stronach 5.8%, NEOS 4.8%, other 5.6%; seats by party - SPOe 53, OeVP 46, FPOe 42, Greens 22; Team Stronach 11, NEOS 9
    highest court(s): Supreme Court of Justice or Oberster Gerichtshof (consists of 85 judges organized into 17 senates or panels of five judges each); Constitutional Court or Verfassungsgerichtshof (consists of 20 judges including 6 substitutes; Administrative Court or Verwaltungsgerichtshof - 2 judges plus other members depending on the importance of the case)
    judge selection and term of office: Supreme Court judges nominated by executive branch departments and appointed by the president; judges serve for life; Constitutional Court judges nominated by several executive branch departments and approved by the president; judges serve for life; Administrative Court judges recommended by executive branch departments and appointed by the president; terms of judges and members determined by the president
    subordinate courts: Courts of Appeal (4); Regional Courts (20); district courts (120); county courts
    Alliance for the Future of Austria or BZOe [Josef BUCHER]
    Austrian People's Party or OeVP [Reinhold MITTERLEHNER]
    Communist Party of Austria or KPOe [Mirko MESSNER]
    Freedom Party of Austria or FPOe [Heinz Christian STRACHE]
    The Greens [Eva GLAWISCHNIG]
    NEOS - The New Austria [Matthias STROLZ]
    Social Democratic Party of Austria or SPOe [Werner FAYMANN]
    "Team Stronach" [Frank STRONACH]
    Austrian Trade Union Federation or OeGB (nominally independent but primarily Social Democratic)
    Federal Economic Chamber (OeVP-dominated)
    Labor Chamber or AK (Social Democratic-leaning think tank)
    OeVP-oriented Association of Austrian Industrialists or IV
    Roman Catholic Church, including its chief lay organization, Catholic Action
    other: three composite leagues of the Austrian People's Party or OeVP representing business, labor, farmers, and other nongovernment organizations in the areas of environment and human rights
    ADB (nonregional member), AfDB (nonregional member), Australia Group, BIS, BSEC (observer), CD, CE, CEI, CERN, EAPC, EBRD, ECB, EIB, EMU, ESA, EU, FAO, FATF, G-9, IADB, IAEA, IBRD, ICAO, ICC (national committees), ICCt, ICRM, IDA, IEA, IFAD, IFC, IFRCS, IGAD (partners), ILO, IMF, IMO, Interpol, IOC, IOM, IPU, ISO, ITSO, ITU, ITUC (NGOs), MIGA, MINURSO, NEA, NSG, OAS (observer), OECD, OIF (observer), OPCW, OSCE, Paris Club, PCA, PFP, Schengen Convention, SELEC (observer), UN, UNCTAD, UNESCO, UNFICYP, UNHCR, UNIDO, UNIFIL, UNTSO, UNWTO, UPU, WCO, WFTU (NGOs), WHO, WIPO, WMO, WTO, ZC
    chief of mission: Ambassador Hans Peter MANZ (since 2 December 2011)
    chancery: 3524 International Court NW, Washington, DC 20008-3035
    telephone: [1] (202) 895-6700
    FAX: [1] (202) 895-6750
    consulate(s) general: Chicago, Los Angeles, New York
    chief of mission: Ambassador Alexa Lange WESNER (since 22 October 2013)
    embassy: Boltzmanngasse 16, A-1090, Vienna
    mailing address: use embassy street address
    telephone: [43] (1) 31339-0
    FAX: [43] (1) 3100682
    three equal horizontal bands of red (top), white, and red; the flag design is certainly one of the oldest - if not the oldest - national banners in the world; according to tradition, in 1191, following a fierce battle in the Third Crusade, Duke Leopold V of Austria's white tunic became completely blood-spattered; upon removal of his wide belt or sash, a white band was revealed; the red-white-red color combination was subsequently adopted as his banner
    golden eagle, edelweiss, Alpine gentian; national colors: red, white
    name: "Bundeshymne" (Federal Hymn)
    lyrics/music: Paula von PRERADOVIC/Wolfgang Amadeus MOZART or Johann HOLZER (disputed)
    note: adopted 1947; the anthem is also known as "Land der Berge, Land am Strome" (Land of the Mountains, Land on the River); Austria adopted a new national anthem after World War II to replace the former imperial anthem composed by Franz Josef HAYDN, which had been appropriated by Germany in 1922 and was thereafter associated with the Nazi regime; a gendered version of the lyrics was adopted by the Austrian Parliament in fall 2011 and became effective 1 January 2012
  • Economy :: AUSTRIA

  • Austria, with its well-developed market economy, skilled labor force, and high standard of living, is closely tied to other EU economies, especially Germany's. Its economy features a large service sector, a relatively sound industrial sector, and a small, but highly developed agricultural sector. Economic growth was anemic at less than 0.5% in 2013 and 2014, and; growth in 2015 is not expected to exceed 0.5%. Austria’s 5.6% unemployment rate, while low by European standards, is at an historic high for Austria. Without extensive vocational training programs and generous early retirement, the unemployment rate would be even higher. Public finances have not stabilized even after a 2012 austerity package of expenditure cuts and new revenues. On the contrary, in 2014, the government created a “bad bank” for the troubled nationalized “Hypo Alpe Adria” bank, pushing the budget deficit up by 0.9% of GDP to 2.4% and public debt to 84.5% of the GDP. Although Austria's fiscal position compares favorably with other euro-zone countries, it faces several external risks, such as Austrian banks' continued exposure to Central and Eastern Europe, repercussions from the Hypo Alpe Adria bank collapse, political and economic uncertainties caused by the European sovereign debt crisis, the current crisis in Russia/Ukraine, the recent appreciation of the Swiss Franc, and political developments in Hungary.
    $383.9 billion (2014 est.)
    $382.8 billion (2013 est.)
    $382 billion (2012 est.)
    note: data are in 2014 US dollars
    $436.1 billion (2014 est.)
    0.3% (2014 est.)
    0.2% (2013 est.)
    0.9% (2012 est.)
    $45,400 (2014 est.)
    $45,100 (2013 est.)
    $45,100 (2012 est.)
    note: data are in 2013 US dollars
    country comparison to the world: 25
    13.1% of GDP (2014 est.)
    12.8% of GDP (2013 est.)
    14.4% of GDP (2012 est.)
    household consumption: 55%
    government consumption: 19.5%
    investment in fixed capital: 21.1%
    investment in inventories: 0.2%
    exports of goods and services: 56.4%
    imports of goods and services: -52.1%
    (2014 est.)
    agriculture: 1.3%
    industry: 28.4%
    services: 70.2% (2014 est.)
    grains, potatoes, wine, fruit; dairy products, cattle, pigs, poultry; lumber
    construction, machinery, vehicles and parts, food, metals, chemicals, lumber and wood, paper and paperboard, communications equipment, tourism
    1.8% (2014 est.)
    3.86 million (2014 est.)
    agriculture: 5.5%
    industry: 26%
    services: 68.5% (2012 est.)
    5.6% (2014 est.)
    5.4% (2013 est.)
    4.2% (2013 est.)
    lowest 10%: 4%
    highest 10%: 22% (2011 est.)
    26.3 (2007)
    31 (1995)
    revenues: $218.1 billion
    expenditures: $228.6 billion (2014 est.)
    50% of GDP (2014 est.)
    -2.4% of GDP (2014 est.)
    84.5% of GDP (2014 est.)
    80.9% of GDP (2013 est.)
    note: this is general government gross debt, defined in the Maastricht Treaty as consolidated general government gross debt at nominal value, outstanding at the end of the year; it covers the following categories of government liabilities (as defined in ESA95): currency and deposits (AF.2), securities other than shares excluding financial derivatives (AF.3, excluding AF.34), and loans (AF.4); the general government sector comprises the sub-sectors of central government, state government, local government and social security funds; as a percentage of GDP, the GDP used as a denominator is the gross domestic product in current year prices
    calendar year
    1.6% (2014 est.)
    2% (2013 est.)
    2.1% (31 December 2014 est.)
    2.21% (31 December 2013 est.)
    $222.6 billion (31 December 2014 est.)
    $225.8 billion (31 December 2013 est.)
    note: see entry for the European Union for money supply for the entire euro area; the European Central Bank (ECB) controls monetary policy for the 18 members of the Economic and Monetary Union (EMU); individual members of the EMU do not control the quantity of money circulating within their own borders
    $428.9 billion (31 December 2014 est.)
    $439.3 billion (31 December 2013 est.)
    $539.7 billion (31 December 2014 est.)
    $559.3 billion (31 December 2013 est.)
    $106 billion (31 December 2012 est.)
    $82.37 billion (31 December 2011)
    $67.68 billion (31 December 2010 est.)
    $4.5 billion (2014 est.)
    $11.25 billion (2013 est.)
    $170.1 billion (2014 est.)
    $167.3 billion (2013 est.)
    machinery and equipment, motor vehicles and parts, paper and paperboard, metal goods, chemicals, iron and steel, textiles, foodstuffs
    Germany 30.7%, Italy 6.6%, France 4.8%, US 4.4%, Switzerland 4.3%, Slovakia 4.2% (2013)
    $172.5 billion (2014 est.)
    $173.8 billion (2013 est.)
    machinery and equipment, motor vehicles, chemicals, metal goods, oil and oil products; foodstuffs
    Germany 41.7%, Italy 6.4%, Switzerland 4.8%, Czech Republic 4.2% (2013)
    $23.29 billion (31 December 2013 est.)
    $23.29 billion (31 December 2013 est.)
    $820 billion (31 December 2013 est.)
    $812 billion (31 December 2012 est.)
    $300.7 billion (31 December 2014 est.)
    $286.3 billion (31 December 2013 est.)
    $365.7 billion (31 December 2014 est.)
    $346.5 billion (31 December 2013 est.)
    euros (EUR) per US dollar -
    0.75 (2014 est.)
    0.76 (2013 est.)
    0.78 (2012 est.)
    0.72 (2011 est.)
    0.76 (2010 est.)
  • Energy :: AUSTRIA

  • 68.02 billion kWh (2013 est.)
    69.01 billion kWh (2013 est.)
    17.69 billion kWh (2013 est.)
    24.96 billion kWh (2013 est.)
    22.36 million kW (2011 est.)
    20.8% of total installed capacity (2013 est.)
    0% of total installed capacity (2013 est.)
    67.2% of total installed capacity (2013 est.)
    12% of total installed capacity (2013 est.)
    20,240 bbl/day (2013 est.)
    0 bbl/day (2013 est.)
    157,000 bbl/day (2013 est.)
    48.5 million bbl (1 January 2014 est.)
    191,900 bbl/day (2012 est.)
    263,300 bbl/day (2013 est.)
    50,000 bbl/day (2013 est.)
    117,000 bbl/day (2013 est.)
    1.297 billion cu m (2013 est.)
    8.2 billion cu m (2014 est.)
    3.973 billion cu m (2013 est.)
    10.41 billion cu m (2013 est.)
    9.656 billion cu m (1 January 2014 est.)
    66.68 million Mt (2012 est.)
  • Communications :: AUSTRIA

  • 3.342 million (2012)
    13.59 million (2012)
    general assessment: highly developed and efficient
    domestic: fixed-line subscribership has been in decline since the mid-1990s with mobile-cellular subscribership eclipsing it by the late 1990s; the fiber-optic net is very extensive; all telephone applications and Internet services are available
    international: country code - 43; satellite earth stations - 15; in addition, there are about 600 VSATs (very small aperture terminals) (2007)
    Austria's public broadcaster, Osterreichischer Rundfunk (ORF), was the main broadcast source until commercial radio and TV service was introduced in the 1990s; cable and satellite TV are available, including German TV stations (2008)
    FM 65 (plus several hundred repeaters), shortwave 1 (2009)
    9 (2010)
    3.512 million (2012)
    6.143 million (2009)
  • Transportation :: AUSTRIA

  • 52 (2013)
    total: 24
    over 3,047 m: 1
    2,438 to 3,047 m: 5
    1,524 to 2,437 m: 1
    914 to 1,523 m: 4
    under 914 m: 13 (2013)
    total: 28
    1,524 to 2,437 m: 1
    914 to 1,523 m: 3
    under 914 m:
    24 (2013)
    1 (2013)
    gas 4,736 km; oil 663 km; refined products 157 km (2013)
    total: 6,399 km
    standard gauge: 5,927 km 1.435-m gauge (3,853 km electrified)
    narrow gauge: 384 km 1.000-m gauge (15 km electrified); 88 km 0.760-m gauge (10 km electrified) (2008)
    total: 124,508 km
    paved: 124,508 km (includes 1,719 km of expressways) (2012)
    358 km (2011)
    registered in other countries: 3 (Cyprus 1, Kazakhstan 1, Saint Vincent and the Grenadines 1) (2010)
    river port(s): Enns, Krems, Linz, Vienna (Danube)
  • Military :: AUSTRIA

  • Land Forces (KdoLdSK), Air Forces (KdoLuSK)
    registration requirement at age 17, the legal minimum age for voluntary military service; 18 is the legal minimum age for compulsory military service (6 months), or optionally, alternative civil/community service (9-12 months); males 18 to 50 years old in the militia or inactive reserve are subject to compulsory service; in a January 2012 referendum, a majority of Austrians voted in favor of retaining the system of compulsory military service (with the option of alternative/non-military service) instead of switching to a professional army system (2015)
    males age 16-49: 1,941,110
    females age 16-49: 1,910,434 (2010 est.)
    males age 16-49: 1,579,862
    females age 16-49: 1,554,130 (2010 est.)
    male: 48,108
    female: 45,752 (2010 est.)
    0.55% of GDP (2015 projected)
    0.62% of GDP (2014)
    0.63% of GDP (2013)
    0.68% of GDP (2012)
    0.7% of GDP (2011)
  • Transnational Issues :: AUSTRIA

  • none
    refugees (country of origin): 11,906 (Afghanistan); 19,577 (Russia) (2014)
    stateless persons: 570 (2014)
    transshipment point for Southwest Asian heroin and South American cocaine destined for Western Europe; increasing consumption of European-produced synthetic drugs