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Austria, See : Flags, Maps


Austria, Lonely Planet, Anthony Haywood, Kerry Walker
Daytrips Austria, Earl Steinbicker
Modern Austria: empire and republic, 1815-1986, Barbara Jelavich
Nachrichten aus dem mittelalterlichen Wien: Zeitgenossen berichten, Ferdinand Opll
Walking in Austria, Kev Reynolds
Wien: Von den Anfängen bis zur ersten Wiener Türkenbelagerung (1529), Péter Csendes

Graz : Images

Salzburg : Images

Frommer's Salzburg Day By Day
Salzburg, Robert Hoffmann, Robert Kriechbaumer
Salzburg: Stadt, Land, Salzkammergut ; [mit Atlas], Walter M. Weiss

Vienna : Images

Frommer's Vienna Day by Day, Teresa Fisher, Wolfgang Regal, Michael Nanut
Rethinking Vienna 1900, Steven Beller
The Siege of Vienna: The Last Great Trial Between Cross & Crescent, John Stoye
Vienna, Elena Rossi
Vienna: a doctor's guide : 15 walking tours through Vienna's medical history

Arthur Schnitzler : Casanovas Heimfahrt, Der Schleier der Pierrette, Reigen,

Artists from Austria

Austria (Europe)

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

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Central Europe, north of Italy and Slovenia

Geographic coordinates:
47 20 N, 13 20 E

Map references:



total: 83,871 sq km country comparison to the world: 113 land: 82,445 sq km

water: 1,426 sq km

Area - comparative:

slightly smaller than Maine

Land boundaries:

total: 2,562 km

border countries: Czech Republic 362 km, Germany 784 km, Hungary 366 km, Italy 430 km, Liechtenstein 35 km, Slovakia 91 km, Slovenia 330 km, Switzerland 164 km


0 km (landlocked)

Maritime claims:

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

Elevation extremes:

lowest point: Neusiedler See 115 m

highest point: Grossglockner 3,798 m

Natural resources:

oil, coal, lignite, timber, iron ore, copper, zinc, antimony, magnesite, tungsten, graphite, salt, hydropower

Land use:

arable land: 16.59%

permanent crops: 0.85%

other: 82.56% (2005)

Irrigated land:

40 sq km (2003)

Total renewable water resources:

84 cu km (2005)

Freshwater withdrawal (domestic/industrial/agricultural):

total: 3.67 cu km/yr (35%/64%/1%)

per capita: 448 cu m/yr (1999)

Natural hazards:

landslides; avalanches; earthquakes

Environment - current issues:

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

Environment - international agreements:

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

Geography - note:

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 ::Austria


8,214,160 (July 2010 est.) country comparison to the world: 92

Age structure:

0-14 years: 14.5% (male 609,748/female 581,144)

15-64 years: 67.5% (male 2,785,091/female 2,756,402)

65 years and over: 18% (male 612,613/female 865,283) (2010 est.)

Median age:

total: 42.6 years

male: 41.5 years

female: 43.6 years (2010 est.)

Population growth rate:

0.042% (2010 est.) country comparison to the world: 190

Birth rate:

8.65 births/1,000 population (2010 est.) country comparison to the world: 216

Death rate:

10.05 deaths/1,000 population (July 2010 est.) country comparison to the world: 57

Net migration rate:

1.83 migrant(s)/1,000 population (2010 est.) country comparison to the world: 43


urban population: 67% of total population (2008)

rate of urbanization: 0.7% annual rate of change (2005-10 est.)

Sex ratio:

at birth: 1.051 male(s)/female

under 15 years: 1.05 male(s)/female

15-64 years: 1.01 male(s)/female

65 years and over: 0.71 male(s)/female

total population: 0.95 male(s)/female (2010 est.)

Infant mortality rate:

total: 4.37 deaths/1,000 live births country comparison to the world: 197 male: 5.31 deaths/1,000 live births

female: 3.38 deaths/1,000 live births (2010 est.)

Life expectancy at birth:

total population: 79.65 years country comparison to the world: 31 male: 76.74 years

female: 82.71 years (2010 est.)

Total fertility rate:

1.39 children born/woman (2010 est.) country comparison to the world: 200

HIV/AIDS - adult prevalence rate:

0.2% (2007 est.) country comparison to the world: 93

HIV/AIDS - people living with HIV/AIDS:

9,800 (2007 est.) country comparison to the world: 105

HIV/AIDS - deaths:

fewer than 100 (2003 est.) country comparison to the world: 128


noun: Austrian(s)

adjective: Austrian

Ethnic groups:

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)


Roman Catholic 73.6%, Protestant 4.7%, Muslim 4.2%, other 3.5%, unspecified 2%, none 12% (2001 census)


German (official nationwide) 88.6%, Turkish 2.3%, Serbian 2.2%, Croatian (official in Burgenland) 1.6%, other (includes Slovene, official in Carinthia, and Hungarian, official in Burgenland) 5.3% (2001 census)


definition: age 15 and over can read and write

total population: 98%

male: NA

female: NA

School life expectancy (primary to tertiary education):

total: 15 years

male: 15 years

female: 15 years (2008)

Education expenditures:

5.4% of GDP (2007) country comparison to the world: 47

Government ::Austria

Country name:

conventional long form: Republic of Austria

conventional short form: Austria

local long form: Republik Oesterreich

local short form: Oesterreich

Government type:

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

Administrative divisions:

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 holiday:

National Day, 26 October (1955); note - commemorates the passage of the law on permanent neutrality


1920; revised 1929; reinstated 1 May 1945; note - during the period 1 May 1934-1 May 1945 there was a fascist (corporative) constitution in place

Legal system:

civil law system with Roman law origin; judicial review of legislative acts by the Constitutional Court; separate administrative and civil/penal supreme courts; accepts compulsory ICJ jurisdiction


16 years of age; universal; note - reduced from 18 years of age in 2007

Executive branch:

chief of state: President Heinz FISCHER (SPOe) (since 8 July 2004)

head of government: Chancellor Werner FAYMANN (SPOe) (since 2 December 2008); Vice Chancellor Josef PROELL (OeVP) (since 2 December 2008)

cabinet: Council of Ministers chosen by the president on the advice of the chancellor (For more information visit the World Leaders website ) 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 with 79.3% of the vote

note: government coalition - SPOe and OeVP

Legislative branch:

bicameral Federal Assembly or Bundesversammlung consists of Federal Council or Bundesrat (62 seats; delegates appointed by state parliaments with each state receiving 3 to 12 seats in proportion to its population; members serve five- or six-year terms) and the National Council or Nationalrat (183 seats; members elected by popular vote for a five-year term under a system of proportional representation with partially-open party lists)

elections: National Council - last held on 28 September 2008 (next to be held by September 2013)

election results: National Council - percent of vote by party - SPOe 29.3%, OeVP 26%, FPOe 17.5%, BZOe 10.7%, Greens 10.4%, other 6.1%; seats by party - SPOe 57, OeVP 51, FPOe 34, BZOe 21, Greens 20

Judicial branch:

Supreme Judicial Court or Oberster Gerichtshof; Administrative Court or Verwaltungsgerichtshof; Constitutional Court or Verfassungsgerichtshof

Political parties and leaders:

Alliance for the Future of Austria or BZOe [Josef BUCHER]; Austrian
People's Party or OeVP [Josef PROELL]; Freedom Party of Austria or
FPOe [Heinz Christian STRACHE]; Social Democratic Party of Austria
or SPOe [Werner FAYMANN]; The Greens [Eva GLAWISCHNIG]

Political pressure groups and leaders:

Austrian Trade Union Federation or OeGB (nominally independent but
primarily Social Democratic); Federal Economic Chamber;
OeVP-oriented Association of Austrian Industrialists or IV; Roman
Catholic Church, including its chief lay organization, Catholic

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

International organization participation:

ADB (nonregional member), AfDB (nonregional member), Australia
Group, BIS, BSEC (observer), CE, CEI, CERN, EAPC, EBRD, EIB, EMU,
OIF (observer), OPCW, OSCE, Paris Club, PCA, PFP, Schengen
Convention, SECI (observer), UN, UNCTAD, UNDOF, UNESCO, UNFICYP,

Diplomatic representation in the US:

chief of mission: Ambassador Christian PROSL

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

Diplomatic representation from the US:

chief of mission: Ambassador William C. EACHO III

embassy: Boltzmanngasse 16, A-1090, Vienna

mailing address: use embassy street address

telephone: [43] (1) 31339-0
FAX: [43] (1) 3100682

Flag description:

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

National anthem:

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 now associated with the Nazi regime

Economy ::Austria

Economy - overview:

Austria, with its well-developed market economy and high standard of living, is closely tied to other EU economies, especially Germany's. Its economy features a large service sector, a sound industrial sector, and a small, but highly developed agricultural sector. Following several years of solid foreign demand for Austrian exports and record employment growth, the international financial crisis and global economic downturn in 2008 led to a recession that persisted until the third quarter of 2009. Austrian GDP contracted 3.8% in 2009 but saw positive growth of about 2% in 2010. Unemployment has not risen as steeply in Austria as elsewhere in Europe, partly because its government has subsidized reduced working hour schemes to allow companies to retain employees. Such stabilization measures, stimulus initiatives, and the government's income tax reforms pushed the budget deficit to 3.5% of GDP in 2009 and about 5% in 2010, from only about 1.3% in 2008. The international financial crisis caused difficulties for some of Austria's largest banks whose extensive operations in central, eastern, and southeastern Europe faced large losses. The government provided bank support - including in some instances, nationalization - to prevent insolvency and possible regional contagion. In the medium-term all large Austrian banks will need additional capital. Even after the global economic outlook improves, Austria will need to continue restructuring, emphasizing knowledge-based sectors of the economy, and encouraging greater labor flexibility and greater labor participation to offset growing unemployment and Austria's aging population and exceedingly low fertility rate.

GDP (purchasing power parity):

$332.9 billion (2010 est.) country comparison to the world: 36 $326.4 billion (2009 est.)

$339.3 billion (2008 est.)

note: data are in 2010 US dollars

GDP (official exchange rate):

$366.3 billion (2010 est.)

GDP - real growth rate:

2% (2010 est.) country comparison to the world: 147 -3.8% (2009 est.)

1.9% (2008 est.)

GDP - per capita (PPP):

$40,300 (2010 est.) country comparison to the world: 20 $39,800 (2009 est.)

$41,300 (2008 est.)

note: data are in 2010 US dollars

GDP - composition by sector:

agriculture: 1.5%

industry: 29.4%

services: 69.1% (2010 est.)

Labor force:

3.63 million (2010 est.) country comparison to the world: 96

Labor force - by occupation:

agriculture: 5.5%

industry: 27.5%

services: 67% (2005 est.)

Unemployment rate:

4.6% (2010 est.) country comparison to the world: 43 4.8% (2009 est.)

Population below poverty line:

6% (2008)

Household income or consumption by percentage share:

lowest 10%: 4%

highest 10%: 22% (2007)

Distribution of family income - Gini index:

26 (2007) country comparison to the world: 127 31 (1995)

Investment (gross fixed):

21% of GDP (2010 est.) country comparison to the world: 75

Public debt:

68.6% of GDP (2010 est.) country comparison to the world: 25 66.4% of GDP (2009 est.)

Inflation rate (consumer prices):

1.5% (2010 est.) country comparison to the world: 40 0.4% (2009 est.)

Commercial bank prime lending rate:

5.03% (31 December 2009 est.) country comparison to the world: 132 6.82% (31 December 2008 est.)

Stock of narrow money:

$173.4 billion (31 December 2010 est) country comparison to the world: 18 $175.6 billion (31 December 2009 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 16 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

Stock of broad money:

$402.8 billion (31 December 2010 est.) country comparison to the world: 23 $402.2 billion (31 December 2009 est.)

Stock of domestic credit:

$659.2 billion (31 December 2009 est.) country comparison to the world: 20 $606.2 billion (31 December 2008 est.)

Market value of publicly traded shares:

$53.58 billion (31 December 2009) country comparison to the world: 43 $72.3 billion (31 December 2008)

$228.7 billion (31 December 2007)

Agriculture - products:

grains, potatoes, sugar beets, wine, fruit; dairy products, cattle, pigs, poultry; lumber


construction, machinery, vehicles and parts, food, metals, chemicals, lumber and wood processing, paper and paperboard, communications equipment, tourism

Industrial production growth rate:

3% (2010 est.) country comparison to the world: 106

Electricity - production:

66.78 billion kWh (2008 est.) country comparison to the world: 40

Electricity - consumption:

68.37 billion kWh (2008 est.) country comparison to the world: 38

Electricity - exports:

14.93 billion kWh (2008 est.)

Electricity - imports:

19.8 billion kWh (2008 est.)

Oil - production:

25,410 bbl/day (2009 est.) country comparison to the world: 72

Oil - consumption:

273,700 bbl/day (2009 est.) country comparison to the world: 48

Oil - exports:

52,970 bbl/day (2008 est.) country comparison to the world: 78

Oil - imports:

298,400 bbl/day (2008 est.) country comparison to the world: 37

Oil - proved reserves:

50 million bbl (1 January 2010 est.) country comparison to the world: 77

Natural gas - production:

1.668 billion cu m (2009) country comparison to the world: 59

Natural gas - consumption:

8.232 billion cu m (2009) country comparison to the world: 50

Natural gas - exports:

3.961 billion cu m (2009 est.) country comparison to the world: 30

Natural gas - imports:

10.96 billion cu m (2009) country comparison to the world: 20

Natural gas - proved reserves:

16.14 billion cu m (1 January 2010 est.) country comparison to the world: 77

Current account balance:

$8.012 billion (2010 est.) country comparison to the world: 26 $8.73 billion (2009 est.)


$157.4 billion (2010 est.) country comparison to the world: 29 $135.7 billion (2009 est.)

Exports - commodities:

machinery and equipment, motor vehicles and parts, paper and paperboard, metal goods, chemicals, iron and steel, textiles, foodstuffs

Exports - partners:

Germany 30.96%, Italy 8.17%, Switzerland 4.99%, US 3.99% (2009)


$156 billion (2010 est.) country comparison to the world: 28 $138.7 billion (2009 est.)

Imports - commodities:

machinery and equipment, motor vehicles, chemicals, metal goods, oil and oil products; foodstuffs

Imports - partners:

Germany 45.07%, Switzerland 6.76%, Italy 6.66%, Netherlands 4.03% (2009)

Reserves of foreign exchange and gold:

$NA (31 December 2010 est.)

$18.05 billion (31 December 2009 est.)

Debt - external:

$755 billion (30 June 2010) country comparison to the world: 17 $864.2 billion (31 December 2008)

Stock of direct foreign investment - at home:

$290.7 billion (31 December 2010 est.) country comparison to the world: 18 $286.4 billion (31 December 2009 est.)

Stock of direct foreign investment - abroad:

$297.2 billion (31 December 2010 est.) country comparison to the world: 14 $290.5 billion (31 December 2009 est.)

Exchange rates:

euros (EUR) per US dollar - 0.7715 (2010), 0.7179 (2009), 0.6827 (2008), 0.7345 (2007), 0.7964 (2006)

Communications ::Austria

Telephones - main lines in use:

3.253 million (2009) country comparison to the world: 46

Telephones - mobile cellular:

11.773 million (2009) country comparison to the world: 59

Telephone system:

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)

Broadcast media:

Austria's public broadcaster, ORF, was the main broadcast source until commercial radio and television service was introduced in the 1990s; cable and satellite TV are available, including German TV stations (2008)

Internet country code:


Internet hosts:

3.266 million (2010) country comparison to the world: 29

Internet users:

6.143 million (2009) country comparison to the world: 43

Transportation ::Austria


55 (2010) country comparison to the world: 84

Airports - with paved runways:

total: 25

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: 14 (2010)

Airports - with unpaved runways:

total: 30

1,524 to 2,437 m: 1

914 to 1,523 m: 3

under 914 m: 26 (2010)


1 (2010)


gas 2,721 km; oil 663 km; refined products 157 km (2009)


total: 6,399 km country comparison to the world: 29 standard gauge: 5,927 km 1.435-m gauge (3,688 km electrified)

narrow gauge: 384 km 1.000-m gauge (15 km electrified); 88 km 0.760-m gauge (10 km electrified) (2008)


total: 107,262 km country comparison to the world: 40 paved: 107,262 km (includes 1,696 km of expressways) (2006)


358 km (2007) country comparison to the world: 91

Merchant marine:

total: 2 country comparison to the world: 141 by type: cargo 2

registered in other countries: 4 (Cyprus 1, Malta 1, Saint Vincent and the Grenadines 2) (2010)

Ports and terminals:

Enns, Krems, Linz, Vienna

Military ::Austria

Military branches:

Land Forces (KdoLdSK), Air Forces (KdoLuSK)

Military service age and obligation:

18-35 years of age for compulsory military service; 16 years of age for male or female voluntary service; service obligation 6 months of training, followed by an 8-year reserve obligation; conscripts cannot be deployed in military operations outside Austria (2009)

Manpower available for military service:

males age 16-49: 1,960,781

females age 16-49: 1,926,134 (2010 est.)

Manpower fit for military service:

males age 16-49: 1,595,379

females age 16-49: 1,566,884 (2010 est.)

Manpower reaching militarily significant age annually:

male: 49,455

female: 47,046 (2010 est.)

Military expenditures:

0.8% of GDP (2009) country comparison to the world: 150

Transnational Issues ::Austria

Disputes - international:

while threats of international legal action never materialized in 2007, 915,220 Austrians, with the support of the newly elected Freedom Party, signed a petition in January 2008, demanding that Austria block the Czech Republic's accession to the EU unless Prague closed its nuclear power plant in Temelin, bordering Austria

Illicit drugs:

transshipment point for Southwest Asian heroin and South American cocaine destined for Western Europe; increasing consumption of European-produced synthetic drugs

page last updated on January 20, 2011


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