Basque Country (autonomous community)

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**Geography and Climate**:
– Basque Country is an autonomous community in northern Spain, comprising provinces like Álava, Biscay, and Gipuzkoa.
– The region features valleys with rivers flowing into the Bay of Biscay and notable coastal features such as the Bilbao Abra Bay.
– Basque mountains create distinct climatic areas, with northern valleys having an oceanic climate, the middle section experiencing a mix of continental and oceanic climates, and the Ebro valley having a pure continental climate.
– The climate in the Ebro part of the Basque Country is moderated by oceanic influences.

**Government and Politics**:
– Basque Country was granted the status of nationality within Spain in 1978, governed based on the Statute of Autonomy of the Basque Country.
– Vitoria-Gasteiz is the de facto capital housing the Basque Parliament, with Bilbao being the largest municipality by population.
– The region is configured as a federation of three constituent provinces, each with its own provincial councils and relevant attributions, with the Basque Parliament electing the Lehendakari who forms the government.

**Demographics and Language**:
– Basque Autonomous Community has over 2 million inhabitants, with nearly half residing in the Bilbao metropolitan area.
– There is significant immigration from other parts of Spain and abroad, with 7% of the population comprising foreigners.
– The Basque language has seen a revival, with Gipuzkoa having the highest percentage of Basque speakers, and recent surveys indicating a growing number of speakers, especially among the younger population.

**Economy and Challenges**:
– Basque Country leads Spain in per capita GDP and has a surplus in public finances.
– The region has shifted from traditional industries to services and technologies, with strong sectors including manufacturing, aeronautics, and finance.
– Challenges include the Ibarretxe Plan, coalition formations in the government, and a complex system of autonomous and central government coordination.

**Culture, Education, and Infrastructure**:
– Basque culture is symbolized by the Historic Oak of Gernika, with a strong preference for further self-government and support for Catalan independence.
– The region has a robust education system, universal healthcare coverage, and high life expectancy and quality of life indices.
– Infrastructure developments include a new high-speed network (Basque Y) under construction, airports like Bilbao Airport, and seaports like the Port of Bilbao.

The Basque Country (/bæsk, bɑːsk/; Basque: Euskadi [eus̺kadi]; Spanish: País Vasco [paˈiz ˈβasko]), also called the Basque Autonomous Community, is an autonomous community in northern Spain. It includes the Basque provinces of Álava, Biscay, and Gipuzkoa. It also surrounds an enclave called Treviño, which belongs to the neighboring autonomous community of Castile and León.

Basque Country
Euskadi (in Basque)
País Vasco or Euskadi (in Spanish)
Autonomous Community of the Basque Country
Euskal Autonomia Erkidegoa (in Basque)
Comunidad Autónoma del País Vasco (in Spanish)
Anthem:
Eusko Abendaren Ereserkia "Anthem of the Basque ethnicity"
Location of the Basque Country community in Spain
Location of the Basque Country community in Spain
Coordinates: 42°50′N 2°41′W / 42.833°N 2.683°W / 42.833; -2.683
Country Spain
CapitalVitoria-Gasteiz
Largest cityBilbao
ProvincesÁlava,
Biscay,
Gipuzkoa
Government
 • TypeDevolved government under constitutional monarchy
 • BodyBasque Government
 • Lehendakari (Head of the government)Iñigo Urkullu (EAJ/PNV)
Area
 • Total7,234 km2 (2,793 sq mi)
 • Rank14th (1.4% of Spain)
Population
 (2023)
 • Total2,222,164
 • Density310/km2 (800/sq mi)
 • Rank
7th (4.9% of Spain)
DemonymsBasque
euskaldun, euskal herritar
vasco (m), vasca (f)
GDP
 • Total€79.350 billion (2022)
 • Per capita€35,832 (2022)
Area code+34 94-
ISO 3166 codeES-PV
Statute of Autonomy25 October 1979
Official languagesBasque
Spanish
ParliamentBasque Parliament
Congress18 deputies (of 350)
Senate15 senators (of 266)
HDI (2021)0.932
very high · 2nd
WebsiteBasque Government
Map
a. ^ Also Euskal Herria, according to the Basque Statute of Autonomy .
b. ^ Also Euskal Herriko Autonomia Erkidegoa, according to the Basque Statute of Autonomy.

The Basque Country or Basque Autonomous Community was granted the status of nationality within Spain, attributed by the Spanish Constitution of 1978. The autonomous community is based on the Statute of Autonomy of the Basque Country, a foundational legal document providing the framework for the development of the Basque people on Spanish soil. Navarre, which had narrowly rejected a joint statute of autonomy with Gipuzkoa, Álava and Biscay in 1932, was granted a separate statute in 1982.

Currently there is no official capital in the autonomous community, but the city of Vitoria-Gasteiz, in the province of Álava, is the de facto capital as the location of the Basque Parliament, the headquarters of the Basque Government, and the residence of the President of the Basque Autonomous Community (the Palace of Ajuria Enea). The High Court of Justice of the Basque Country has its headquarters in the city of Bilbao. Whilst Vitoria-Gasteiz is the largest municipality in area, with 277 km2 (107 sq mi), Bilbao is the largest in population, with 353,187 people, located in the province of Biscay within a conurbation of 875,552 people.

The term Basque Country may also refer to the larger cultural region (Basque: Euskal Herria), the home of the Basque people, which includes the autonomous community.

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