June 29, 2014 Held



Cast Votes:268,920
Valid Votes:268,920
Invalid Votes:None

More Info:

At stake in this election:

  • Prohibit the sale of land to foreigners in Lithuania[1]

Description of government structure:

  • Chief of State: President Dalia GRYBAUSKAITE[2]
  • Head of Government: Prime Minister Algirdas BUTKEVICIUS
  • Assembly: Lithuania has a unicameral Parliament (Seimas) with 141 seats.

Main Provisions in the Referendum:

  • To prohibit the sale of land in Lithuania to foreigners
    • ​Result: Ballot measure failed.  
  • A motion to alter or supplement the Constitution of the Republic of Lithuania may be submitted to the Seimas by a group of not less than 1/4 of all the Members of the Seimas, or not less than by 100,000 voters**
    • ​Result: Ballot measure failed.  

Electoral Requirements:

  • Over 50 percent turnout is needed and more than half of the citizens, having the right to vote and having been registered on electoral rolls must approve proposed measure.[3]  
  • A motion to alter or supplement the Constitution of the Republic of Lithuania may be submitted to the Seimas by a group of not less than 1/4 of all the Members of the Seimas or not less than by 300,000 voters

Election Note:

  • The referendum vote will take place on 29 June 2014.[4] When Lithuania joined the European Union (EU) in 2004, the government promised to end the country’s ban on foreigners wanting to purchase land.[5] The EU and Lithuania agreed to a transitional period that allowed the ban to remain in place until May 2011 and was extended to May 2014.[6] But supporters of the ban want to keep it in place.  They were able to collect 300,000 signatures needed to call a vote.[7] The Lithuanian Nationalist Union and the Lithuanian Peasant and Green’s Union all supported the referendum effort.[8] It should be noted that two-thirds of Lithuanians are opposed to selling land to foreigners.[9] If the measure passes, the European Court of Justice could fine Lithuania and funding from the EU could be terminated.

Population and Voter Registration:

  • Population: 2,944,459 (January 2014)
  • Registered Voters: 2,554,532 (May 2014)

Gender Data:

·         Female Population: 1,582,061 (2014)

·         Is Lithuania a signatory to CEDAW: N/A

·         Has Lithuania ratified CEDAW: Yes, accession (18 January 1994)

·         Gender Quota: No

·         Female candidates in this election: N/A

·         Number of Female Parliamentarians: 34 (following the 2012 elections)

·         Human Development Index Position: 37 (2014)

·         Social Institutions and Gender Index (SIGI) Categorization: Low (2014)

Disability Data:

·         Is Lithuania a signatory to CRPD: Yes (30 March 2007)

·         Has Lithuania ratified CRPD: Yes (18 August 2010)

·         Population with a disability: 448,165 (est.)


**Lithuania’s Constitutional Court ruled on Friday July 11, 2014 that this provision is unconstitutional, stating, “the provision of the Referendum Law, which obligates the parliament to call a referendum, even if the proposal is possibly inconsistent with the Constitution, run counter to the country’s main law.”

*As of June 2014, the Lithuanian Constitution stipulates that in order to "alter or supplement" the Constitution, "1/4 of the Seimas" and "not less than 300,000 voters" need to support a proposed measure. A proposed motion on the 29 June 2014 referendum, seeks to change part of the requirement from 300,000 voters to 100,000 voters.  There has been no proposal to change the "1/4 of the Seimas support."

[1] http://www.vrk.lt/documents/10180/524841/english_Referendum_2014_06_29.pdf/8bf2f4d5-1d58-44f0-b1c8-589cd6162f07

[2] President GRYBAUSKAITE won a second term on 25 May 2014. http://www.bbc.com/news/world-europe-27571609

[3] http://www.reuters.com/article/2014/02/17/lithuania-land-idUSL6N0LM38T20140217

[4] http://www.baltic-course.com/eng/legislation/?doc=92759

[5] http://www.lithuaniatribune.com/62498/presidents-adviser-land-referendum-in-lithuania-could-be-aimed-at-exiting-eu-201462498/

[6] http://gbtimes.com/world/lithuania-hold-referendum-land-sales-foreigners

[7] http://www.lithuaniatribune.com/64130/seimas-speaker-sees-no-grounds-for-taking-referendum-to-constitutional-court-201464130/

[8] http://www.reuters.com/article/2014/02/17/lithuania-land-idUSL6N0LM38T20140217

[9] http://www.reuters.com/article/2014/02/17/lithuania-land-idUSL6N0LM38T20140217