CHARACTERISTICS OF LAND RESOURCES IN LATVIA

Katerina Melfou, Irina Pilvere

CHARACTERISTICS OF LAND RESOURCES IN LATVIA

In Latvia, 98% of land is situated in the countryside. From the total area of Latvia, 46% of it comprises woodland and 38% is agricultural land. In 2006, 73% of agricultural land was arable land. Having investigated information from different state institutions’ data bases, such as State Land Service, State Forest Service, Rural Support Service and scientists’ data base, the essential quantitative differences were found. In Latvia, different institutions measure and record land areas differently. In this research paper, the author performs a comparative analysis of agricultural land and woodland in the four above-mentioned institutions’ data bases. Various quantitative and qualitative measurements were applied in the analysis of land. For example, the measurements for agricultural land were cadastral value and the estimate in points of land quality, for woodland – cadastral value and the price of land and their changes in the years 2000 – 2006. The price of land has substantially increased in Latvia – it increased twice for woodland and 3.4 times for agricultural land and it still continues to grow.
The method of net income (revenues minus possible expenses in managing cycle) was used to evaluate the efficiency of forest growth, while gross discharge was used for crops. The author states that forest growth can successfully compete with agricultural crop cultivation on the circumstances of extensive management.

Keywords: agricultural land, woodland, efficiency, information.
JEL Classification System: Q23, Q24.

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