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Lithuania/ 4.2 Specific policy issues and recent debates  

4.2.5 Language issues and policies

According to the State Language Law (1995), Lithuanian is the official language of the country. The other most spoken languages are Russian (63%), English (30.4%) and Polish (8.5%) (data from 2012).The Lithuanian Language State Commission is responsible for setting objectives regarding the use of the official language including approving standards. It functions under and is responsible to the Seimas (Parliament). Control over the use of the state language is under the State Language Inspectorate, which functions under the Ministry of Culture. The Law on State Language Inspectorate was passed in 2001.

The Ministry of Culture programme "Preservation, Actualisation and Popularisation of Lithuanian Cultural Heritage, Protection of the State Language" comprises the protection of the state language from 2012-2014. The Seimas of Lithuania, accepting the EU position to keep local languages and dialects, declared 2013 as the Year of Lithuanian dialects.

Chapter published: 28-11-2014

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