|Latvijas lats (Latvian)|
The standard version of 1 lats coin bears a salmon
|ISO 4217 code||LVL|
|Central bank||Bank of Latvia|
|Source||ECB, April 2013|
|Since||2 May 2005|
|Fixed rate since||1 January 2005|
|Replaced by €, cash||1 January 2014|
|€ =||Ls 0.702804 (Irrevocable)|
|Symbol||Ls (before numerals)|
|santīms||s (after numerals)|
|Plural||lati (nom. pl.) or latu (gen. pl.)|
|santīms||santīmi (nom. pl.) or santīmu (gen. pl.)|
|Coins||1, 2, 5, 10, 20, 50 santīmu, 1, 2 lati|
|Banknotes||5, 10, 20, 50, 100, 500 latu|
The lats (plural: lati (2-9) latu (10 and more), ISO 4217 currency code: LVL or 428) is the currency of Latvia. It is abbreviated as Ls. The lats is sub-divided into 100 santīmi (singular: santīms; from French centime). In June 2013, Latvia was assessed to have met all the economic conditions for euro entry, and the lats will be replaced by the euro on 1 January 2014.
First lats, 1922–1940
Coins were issued in denominations of 1, 2, 5, 10, 20 & 50 santīmu, 1, 2 & 5 lati. The 1, 2 & 5 santīmu were in bronze, the 10, 20 & 50 santīmu were nickel, while coins of 1 lats & above were in silver.
The Latvian Bank issued notes from 1922 in denominations of 20, 25, 50, 100 and 500 latu. They also issued 10 latu notes which were 500 rubli notes overprinted with the new denomination. The government issued currency notes from 1925 in denominations of 5, 10 and 20 latu.
Second lats, 1993–2013
The lats was reintroduced in 1993, replacing the Latvian rublis, which was used for a short period after Latvia regained its independence, at a rate of 1 lats = 200 rubļu.
Coins are issued in denominations of 1 santīms, 2 and 5 santīmi, 10, 20 and 50 santīmu, 1 lats and 2 lati. Besides standard coins in the list below and coins for collectors, there are a number of coins that were issued only once and are rarely found in circulation - three commemorative circulation coins in denominations of 2, 10 and 100 latu (the later two of which are, respectively, silver and gold), a 100 lats gold bullion coin, a standard issue 2 lats coin that was gradually taken out of circulation starting from 1999 due to safety issues and series of limited design 1 lats coins that have been issued twice a year since 2004, and once in 2001 and 2003.
|Current standard series|
||1992, 1997, 2003, 2005, 2007, 2008||Obverse - The small coat of arms of Latvia, inscription LATVIJAS REPUBLIKA and the date of issue. Reverse - denomination, ethnographic sun ornaments joined by five arches symbolizing a day of work. Edge - plain.|
||1992, 2000, 2006, 2007, 2009|
||1992, 2006, 2007, 2009|
||1992, 2007, 2009|
||1992, 2007, 2009||Obverse - The small coat of arms of Latvia, inscription LATVIJAS REPUBLIKA and the date of issue. Reverse - pine sapling, which symbolizes Latvian forests and denomination, separated by a horizontal line. Edge - reeded.|
||1992, 2007, 2008||Obverse - The large coat of arms of Latvia, inscription LATVIJAS REPUBLIKA and the date of issue. Reverse - leaping salmon, which symbolizes the waters of Latvia, and denomination. Edge - inscription LATVIJAS REPUBLIKA repeated twice, separated by diamond shaped dots.|
Outer ring - copper and nickel alloy
(inner part - 18.21 mm)
(inner part - 4.50 g, ring - 5.00 g)
|1999, 2003, 2009||Obverse - The large coat of arms of Latvia, and on the ring inscription LATVIJAS REPUBLIKA and the date of issue. A cow, which symbolizes Latvian countryside, and denomination. Edge - reeded, inscription LATVIJAS REPUBLIKA repeated twice, separated by diamond shaped dots.|
All banknotes are 130 × 65 mm in size.
|5 lati||Green||Oak tree||Woodcarving - sun on a distaff|
|10 latu||Purple||River Daugava||Sakta|
|20 latu||Brown||Traditional house||Woven linen|
|50 latu||Blue||Sailing-ship||Keys (Historical seal of Riga)|
|100 latu||Red||Krišjānis Barons||Belt from Lielvārde|
|500 latu||Grey||Latvian folk-maid||Ornamental brass crowns|
Latvia has been a member of the European Union since 1 May 2004 and is a member of the Economic and Monetary Union of the European Union (EMU). The lats is in ERM II, and has now a fixed irrevocable rate of Ls 0.702804 = €1. Latvia had originally planned to implement the third stage of the EMU (i.e. adopt the euro) on 1 January 2008, but it didn't happen. The transition to euro will now occur on 1 January 2014.
The lats is the fourth-highest-valued currency unit after the Kuwaiti dinar, Bahraini dinar, and the Omani rial. The 500-Latu note is the world's third most valuable banknote next to the $10,000 Singapore note and 1,000 Swiss franc note.
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