The Principality of Liechtenstein is a small country in Central Europe, bordered by Switzerland to the west and south and by Austria to the east and north.
Total area of Liechtenstein is 160.475 sq. km. Population of Liechtenstein is 38.590 people (2020). According to the census of 2000, most of the population is Liechtensteiners (65.6%), the other ethnic groups include Italians, Swiss and Austrian.
The capital of Liechtenstein is Vaduz.
The official language of Liechtenstein is German.
The official currency is Swiss franc. 1 USD is equal to 0.93 CHF.
The climate of Liechtenstein is сontinental; cold, cloudy winters with frequent snow or rain; cool to moderately warm, cloudy, humid summers; avg. maximum temperature (July) +27°; avg. minimum temperature (January) +13°.
Time difference with Moscow is -1 hours.
Literacy rate is 100%.
Calling code of Liechtenstein is +423.
Liechtenstein is a constitutional monarchy.
The head of state is the Prince, who represents Liechtenstein in its international relations (although Switzerland has taken responsibility for much of Liechtenstein's diplomatic relations). The Prince may veto laws adopted by parliament. The Prince can call referenda, propose new legislation, and dissolve parliament, although dissolution of parliament may be subject to a referendum.
Executive power is vested in a collegiate government comprising the head of government (prime minister) and four government councilors (ministers). The head of government and the other ministers are appointed by the Prince upon the proposal and concurrence of parliament. The constitution stipulates that at least two members of the government be chosen from each of the two regions. The members of the government are collectively and individually responsible to parliament; parliament may ask the Prince to remove an individual minister or the entire government.
Legislative power is vested in the unicameral Landtag made up of 25 members elected for maximum four-year terms according to a proportional representation formula. Fifteen members are elected from the "Oberland" (Upper Country or region) and ten members are elected from the "Unterland" (Lower Country or region). Parliament proposes and approves a government, which is formally appointed by the Prince.
Judiciary power is vested in the Regional Court at Vaduz, the Princely High Court of Appeal at Vaduz, the Princely Supreme Court, the Administrative Court, and the State Court.
Despite its limited natural resources, Liechtenstein is one of the few countries in the world with more registered companies than citizens; it has developed a prosperous, highly industrialized free-enterprise economy and boasts a financial service sector as well as a living standard which compares favorably with those of the urban areas of Liechtenstein's large European neighbours.
Very low business taxes (lowest in Europe after Andorra's 10% maximum tax rate) - the corporate tax rate is a flat 12.5% - as well as easy Rules of Incorporation have induced about 73,700 holding (or so-called 'letter box') companies to establish registered offices in Liechtenstein. This provides about 30% of Liechtenstein's state revenue. Liechtenstein also generates revenue from Stiftungen ("foundations"), which are financial entities created to hide the true owner of nonresident foreigners' financial holdings. The foundation is registered in the name of a Liechtensteiner, often a lawyer.
Recently, Liechtenstein has displayed stronger determination to prosecute international money-launderers and has worked to promote the country's image as a legitimate finance center.
Liechtenstein participates in a customs union with Switzerland and employs the Swiss franc as national currency. The country imports about 85% of its energy. Liechtenstein has been a member of the European Economic Area since May 1995. The government is working to harmonize its economic policies with those of an integrated Europe.
Liechtenstein is a large producer of ceramics and is the world's largest producer of sausage casings and false teeth. Other industries include electronics, textiles, precision instruments, metal manufacturing, power tools, anchor bolts, calculators, pharmaceuticals, and food products. Liechtenstein produces wheat, barley, corn, potatoes, dairy products, livestock, and wine. Tourism accounts for a large portion of the country's economy.
Liechtenstein is a civil law jurisdiction, whose national law was formed under the influence of Swiss and Austrian law with local adaptations. Civil and criminal codes are of Austrian origin, whereas Swiss law was adopted to regulate commerce. Liechtenstein accepts compulsory International Court of Justice jurisdiction with reservations.
The principal forms of business organization in Liechtenstein are:
The most common structure is the Сompany Limited by Shares.