Key indicator

Indicators characterising languages used by the population of Latvia

Mother tongue of population of Latvia

In 2017, Latvian was mother tongue of 60.8 % of the usually resident population of Latvia.

Mother tongue of population of Latvia
(as per cent of total population)

 

2017

External Migration Survey results

Latvian

60.8

Russian

36.0

Other

3.2

The largest share of population having Latvian mother tongue was recorded in Vidzeme region (89.2 %), while in Latgale and Riga those were less than 50 % (41.4 % and 43 %, respectively).

Language skills of the population of Latvia

Out of the total population of Latvia, 50 % indicated that know Russian, more than 37 % know English, while 28.8 % mentioned that know Latvian as foreign language.

Language skills of the population of Latvia
(as per cent of the total population)

 

2017

External Migration Survey results

Latvian

28.8

Russian

50.0

English

37.5

French

0.9

German

7.9

 

Refer to the table AMA4. Language skills by sex, age group and statistical region, 2017 (%)

 

Main language used at home

In 2017, the share of population at home mainly using Latvian accounted for 61.3 %, while that of people using Russian constituted 37.7 %.

Population of Latvia by ethnicity and main language used at home; 2017
(as per cent of the total respective ethnicity population)

 

Latvian

Russian

Total

61.3

37.7

Latvians

91.9

7.5

Russians

8.5

90.7

 

In 2017, the largest share of population at home mainly using Latvian was registered in Vidzeme region (90 %), followed by Kurzeme (78.4 %). The highest proportion of population at home mainly using Russian was recorded in Latgale (60.3 %) and Riga (56.1 %).