Our relationship with Latvia

New Zealand’s relationship with Latvia is friendly and, to the extent that constraints of size and distance allow, we are working towards to strengthening our political and economic ties.  

During the 1940s, a few hundred Latvians settled in New Zealand.  The photographer Andris Apse is possibly the best-known Latvian New Zealander.  Our modern people-to-people links are underpinned by a Working Holiday Scheme that was signed in 2008, with strong uptake by Latvians. 

Latvia joined the United Nations in September 1991 and was the first Baltic state to join the World Trade Organisation. New Zealand regularly interacts with Latvia in these fora, and values its relationship with Latvia as a member state of the European Union.


2017 statistics

Total trade in goods 

NZ$24.4 million


Exports to Latvia

NZ$14.1 million 

Top exports: Wine, wool and machinery

Imports from Latvia

NZ$10.2 million

Top imports: Wood, electrical machinery and equipment


US$30 billion


Working Holiday Scheme

New Zealanders aged between 18 and 30 can apply for a 12-month working holiday visa for Latvia.

To apply in advance, you can contact the Embassy of Latvia in Japan and submit documents in person. To apply on arrival, you can go to the Office of Citizenship and Migration Affairs (OCMA) in Latvia.

For more information, read the Latvian OCMA website (external link).


Recent official visits

Latvian visits to New Zealand

  • Edgars Rinkēvičs, Minister of Foreign Affairs, visited New Zealand in June 2015
  • Indulis Emsis, Speaker of the Saeima, August 2007.

News & Events

Centenary of the Liberation of Le Quesnoy


The official commemoration to mark the centenary of the liberation of Le Quesnoy by the New Zealand Division will be held in the township on 4 November 2018.