Unity (Latvia)

Unity[4] (Latvian: Vienotība, V) is a liberal-conservative political party in Latvia.[5][6] It is a member of the New Unity alliance and is positioned on the centre-right on the political spectrum.[7]

LeaderArvils Ašeradens
General SecretaryArtis Kampars
FounderValdis Dombrovskis
Founded6 March 2010 (2010-03-06) (electoral alliance)
6 August 2011 (2011-08-06) (party)
Merger of
HeadquartersZigfrīds Anna Meierovics Boulevard 12-3, Riga LV-1050
Youth wingVienotības Jaunatnes organizācija[1]
Membership (2017)2,397[2]
Political positionCentre-right
National affiliationNew Unity
European affiliationEuropean People's Party
European Parliament groupEuropean People's Party
Colours  Green
23 / 100
European Parliament
2 / 8
Riga City Council
9 / 60
3 / 43

It was formed in 2010 as an electoral alliance and in 2011, it was registered as a political party. It was the leading party in the Dombrovskis and Straujuma cabinets from its inception in 2010 until February 2016; it is a member of the current coalition since January 2019 with its member Krišjānis Kariņš as Prime Minister. Unity is a member of the European People's Party (EPP).[8] Since 2017, its chairman of the Main Board has been the former Minister for Economics of Latvia, Arvils Ašeradens,[9] who succeeded former European Commissioner Andris Piebalgs.[10]


Origins, governing and coalition party (2010–2018)Edit

The party was founded as an electoral alliance of the New Era Party, Civic Union, and the Society for Political Change on 6 March 2010. It was reportedly founded in a bid to form a counterweight to the left-wing Harmony Centre alliance,[11] which had been strengthening in polls and elections, while the other right-wing parties (People's Party, For Fatherland and Freedom/LNNK and LPP/LC) were below the electoral threshold of 5%.[12]

The alliance, led by incumbent Prime Minister Valdis Dombrovskis from New Era, achieved a victory in the 2010 parliamentary election, despite the austerity measures enacted by his cabinet during the Great Recession of the late 2000s. Unity led the coalition with ZZS as junior partner until 2011.[13][14]

On 6 August 2011 the alliance was transformed into a single political party.[15] In the 2011 snap elections, the party came in third, but held on to the PM post in a coalition with the Zatlers' Reform Party and the National Alliance.

After five years in office, Valdis Dombrovskis resigned as PM after the Zolitūde tragedy in early 2014. He was succeeded by party colleague Laimdota Straujuma, who brought ZZS back into her coalition. For the 2014 general election, Unity announced an electoral pact with the Reform Party, which was later followed by a full absorption in March 2015.[16] The party improved on its previous result, coming in second at the polls and gaining 3 extra seats.

The second Straujuma cabinet, however, lasted only for about a year. After the demise of the Straujuma cabinet in late 2015, the party suffered from internal conflicts (e.g. the polarising actions and statements of then party board chair Solvita Āboltiņa) and defections of MPs to other political parties, undermining its ratings.[17][18][19][20] Nevertheless, it remained as the largest parliamentary party in the ZZS-led Kučinskis cabinet and it held 5 ministerial portfolios from early 2016 to 2018.

New Unity alliance, Kariņš government (2018–present)Edit

After the October 2018 parliamentary elections, New Unity – an alliance formed in April between Unity and five regional parties – became the smallest faction in the parliament with 8 seats out of 100. The subsequent failure of the candidates for PM from the New Conservative Party and KPV LV to form a government by early January 2019 urged the President of Latvia, Raimonds Vējonis, to offer the opportunity to JV's candidate, former MEP Krišjānis Kariņš.[21] The Kariņš cabinet consisting of JV, the New Conservatives, KPV LV, Development/For!, the National Alliance was approved by the Saeima on 23 January 2019.[22][23][24]

Election resultsEdit

Legislative electionsEdit

Election Leader Performance Rank Government
Votes % ± pp Seats +/–
2010 Valdis Dombrovskis 301,429 31.90 New
33 / 100
New 1st Coalition
2011 172,563 19.00   22.90
20 / 100
  13   3rd Coalition
2014 Laimdota Straujuma 199,535 22.01   3.01
23 / 100
  3   2nd Coalition
2018[a] Krišjānis Kariņš 56,542 6.74   15.27
7 / 100
  16   7th Coalition
2022[b] 173,425 19.19   12.45
23 / 100
  16   1st Coalition
  1. ^ The New Unity list won 8 seats; 7 went to Unity and 1 to the Latgale Party
  2. ^ The New Unity list won 26 seats; 23 went to Unity, 1 to For Kuldīga Municipality, 1 to For Valmiera and Vidzeme and 1 to an independent

European ParliamentEdit

Election Leader Votes % Seats +/–
2014 Valdis Dombrovskis 204,979 46.56 (#1)
4 / 8
2019[a] 124,193 26.40 (#1)
2 / 8
  1. ^ The New Unity list won 2 seats, both of which went to Unity

Symbols and logosEdit

See alsoEdit


  1. ^ "Vienotiba/Youth". www.jaunavienotiba.lv. Unity. 13 March 2015.
  2. ^ "What's up with Latvia's feeble civic engagement?". Public Broadcasting of Latvia. 3 January 2018. Retrieved 1 July 2018.
  3. ^ Nordsieck, Wolfram. "Parties and elections in Europe - Latvia". Retrieved 1 January 2023.
  4. ^ "Legal entity". Register of Enterprises of the Republic of Latvia. Retrieved 2 April 2019.
  5. ^ Kjetil Duvold (2017). "When Left and Right is a Matter of Identity: Overlapping Political Dimensions in Estonia and Latvia". In Andrey Makarychev; Alexandra Yatsyk (eds.). Borders in the Baltic Sea Region: Suturing the Ruptures. Springer. p. 132. ISBN 978-1-352-00014-6.
  6. ^ Nordsieck, Wolfram (2018). "Latvia". Parties and Elections in Europe. Retrieved 6 April 2019.
  7. ^ "13th Saeima elections: The parties (Part 4)". Public Broadcasting of Latvia. 17 August 2018. Retrieved 18 August 2018.
  8. ^ "Latvia: PM Krisjanis Karins delivers a stable government for the Latvian people". European People's Party. 23 January 2019.
  9. ^ "New leader at the helm of Unity party". Public Broadcasting of Latvia. Retrieved 30 June 2018.
  10. ^ "New leader of Latvia's Unity party calls for reconciliation among members, fresh start". The Baltic Times. 5 June 2016. Retrieved 5 June 2016.
  11. ^ Unity has potential, but faces rocky road Archived 17 March 2010 at the Wayback Machine. Latviansonline.com (14 March 2010). Retrieved on 19 September 2011.
  12. ^ Harmony Centre is Most Popular Latvian Party | Angus Reid Public Opinion Archived 9 February 2010 at the Wayback Machine. Angus-reid.com. Retrieved on 19 September 2011.
  13. ^ ""Unity" tops Latvian elections". The Baltic Times. 3 October 2010. Retrieved 20 May 2020.
  14. ^ Kolyako, Nina (3 October 2010). "Unity wins elections in Latvia". The Baltic Course | Baltic States news & analytics. Retrieved 20 May 2020.
  15. ^ Apollo – Ziņas: Izveidota partija «Vienotība» Archived 8 August 2011 at the Wayback Machine. Apollo.lv. Retrieved on 19 September 2011.
  16. ^ 'Vienotība' un RP vienojas par kopīgu startu 12.Saeimas vēlēšanās, LETA, 27 December 2013, accessed 21 September 2014
  17. ^ "Kampars: Unity is accused of not taking interest in society's woes aka the arrogance created by Āboltiņa's symbol". Baltic News Network. 10 November 2017. Retrieved 30 June 2018.
  18. ^ "Unpopular MP booted from Unity party". Public Broadcasting of Latvia. 6 November 2017. Retrieved 30 June 2018.
  19. ^ "Political expert: Unity will not disappear just yet". Public Broadcasting of Latvia. Retrieved 30 June 2018.
  20. ^ Kaža, Juris (14 August 2018). "Who is who in upcoming Latvian parliamentary elections". Re:Baltica. Retrieved 17 August 2018.
  21. ^ "Latvia gets a new government led by Krišjānis Kariņš". Public Broadcasting of Latvia. 23 January 2019. Retrieved 24 May 2019.
  22. ^ "The Saeima approves the government formed by Arturs Krišjānis Kariņš". The Saeima of the Republic of Latvia. 23 January 2019. Retrieved 24 May 2019.
  23. ^ "Parliament approves Latvia's new coalition government". Xinhua News Agency. 23 January 2019. Retrieved 24 May 2019.
  24. ^ Reuters Staff (23 January 2019). "Latvia's Karins confirmed as PM, ending lengthy political deadlock". Reuters. Retrieved 15 April 2021. {{cite news}}: |author= has generic name (help)

External linksEdit