Austria is known for its numerous events and festivals as well as the magnificent Alps, hiking and skiing.
Official language: German
Passport and visa: A Finnish citizen needs a passport or identity card as a travel document.
Time difference to Finland: -1
Agriculture and fishing
The best agricultural lands lie along the Danube and on the plains to the east. Here you will find cereals, vegetables, fruit and vineyards, as well as stock of cattle. Animal care dominates in the alpine areas to the west.
- CountryAAH: Comprehensive import regulations of Austria. Covers import prohibitions and special documentation requirements for a list of prohibited items.
The production of meat and dairy products accounts for just over half of agricultural production. The most important crops are maize, wheat and barley and sugar beets. Grazing land occupies a larger portion of agricultural land than the cultivated land.
Large parts of agriculture are still small family farms, even though the trend is that agriculture is merged into larger units. For Austria defense and foreign policy, please check relationshipsplus.
Like other industrial nations, Austria has heavily subsidized its agriculture. EU membership has meant reduced subsidies for the country’s farmers and increased competition from other countries. To assert themselves, Austrian farmers have, among other things, invested in organic farming. One fifth of the land used is used for organic farming, not least livestock farming.
Almost half of Austria is covered by forest. The forestry industry is economically important and supplies the paper and wood products industry with raw materials. Much of the forest is privately owned.
FACTS – AGRICULTURE
Agriculture’s share of GDP
1.2 percent (2018)
Percentage of land used for agriculture
32.4 percent (2016)
- Abbreviationfinder.org: Offers how the 3-letter acronym of AUS stands for the state of Austria in geography.
Kurz: The government should counter anti-Semitism
In a speech to Parliament, the country’s new Chancellor Kurz says his government should give priority to reducing the immigration of paperless refugees to Austria and to strengthening the guarding of the EU’s external borders. Kurz also talks about Austria’s responsibility to remember its role as part of Nazi Germany during World War II and that the government will work to counter anti-Semitism.
Right-wing extremist FPÖ in office
The Conservative Party ÖVP forms a coalition government with the right-wing FPÖ. New Chancellor of the Exchequer will be ÖVP leader Sebastian Kurz, 31, who was foreign minister in the outgoing government. FPÖ leader Heinz-Christian Strache becomes Vice Chancellor. The FPÖ, which went strong and became the third largest party in the October 2017 elections, is also given the important posts as Minister of the Interior and Minister of Defense. Karin Kneissl, who is appointed new Foreign Minister, is not a member of the FPÖ but is nominated by them. ÖVP politician Hartwig Lögen becomes finance minister. The opposition expresses strong concern that FPÖ, through the Ministry of the Interior, will gain control of both the police and the security services. The bipartisan government gets approved by the president and sworn in. Around 6,000 people are demonstrating in central Vienna against the new government.
ÖVP wins in the Austrian elections
Young Sebastian Kurz and his conservative party ÖVP receive just over 31 percent of the vote in the election and 62 seats. The right-wing extremist FPÖ is also moving forward, receiving close to 26 percent of the vote and 51 seats, which is close to the record from 1999. SPÖ managed to take home second place with 26.9 percent of the votes and 52 seats.
FPÖ presents election programs
The FPÖ hopes that its plans to cut support for migrants, reduce immigration and fight against Islamism will help the party get into office after the October 15 parliamentary elections. Neither the Social Democrats nor conservative ÖVP have said no to a government cooperation with the FPÖ. The party has also stood for an EU hostile line, but before the election it has toned down its opposition to be able to gain wider support among the Austrians, where many are stated to want the country to remain in the EU.
ÖVP conducts opinion polls
ÖVP leads by about 33 percent in the polls before the parliamentary elections on October 15, while SPÖ and FPÖ both gather about 25 percent of the electorate.
Hamas member gets lifetime
A Palestinian suspected of being a member of the Islamist group Hamas is sentenced to life imprisonment for planning attacks against Jews in Israel. The 27-year-old has been incarcerated since being arrested in an asylum-seeking center in July 2016. He is convicted of contacting Palestinians in Israel via social media and ordering them to kill Jews in Jerusalem.
Visits by Turkish minister are stopped
Austria stops Turkey’s Economy Minister Nihat Zeibekci from entering the country to attend a manifesto with the aim of marking the one-year anniversary of the failed coup attempt in Turkey on July 15, 2016.
Vienna is trying to settle the dispute with Italy
The Austrian government fades the rhetoric of plans to deploy troops at the border with Italy to stop any possible refugee stream from the south. The Minister of Defense says that no troop movement is not relevant and that it is only an emergency plan in case the refugee stream would be too large.
Military ready to stop refugee stream from Italy
Diplomatic relations with Italy are strained when the Vienna government announces that 750 Austrian soldiers are on standby to help control the refugee flow from Italy across the Brenner Pass to Austria if necessary. Four armored vehicles have been deployed near Innsbruck.
New election decision
Chancellor Christian Kern announces that elections will be held in October, one year in advance. The decision comes after a long period of disagreement between the two government parties SPÖ and ÖVP about what policy the government should follow and after the ÖVP’s new leader Sebastian Kurz has demanded a new election.
New leader of ÖVP
The only 30-year-old Sebastian Kurz is elected new party leader for ÖVP since Reinhold Mitterlehner resigned a few days earlier. Kurz announces after his entry that he wants a new election to be held and that he will address this with Chancellor Christian Kern.