Liberalism by country
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This article gives information on liberalism in diverse countries around the world. It is an overview of parties that adhere more or less (explicitly) to the ideas of political liberalism and is therefore a list of liberal parties around the world.
The definition of liberal party is highly debatable. In the list below, a liberal party is defined as a political party that adheres to the basic principles of political liberalism. This is a broad political current, that includes both right of center (or free market) liberals and left of center liberals (or mixed economy). All liberal parties emphasize individual rights, but they differ in their opinion on an active role for the state.
After liberals have gained power and realized their first reforms, one often sees a divergence within their ranks:
- Some are satisfied and rest apart with these reforms, developing into liberal conservatives or simply becoming conservatives, mostly still adhering to free market policies. An example is the Liberal Democratic Party (Japan). These parties are not included in the overview.
- The mainstream of liberalism continues on the path of gradual reforms, embraces electoral democracy as a basic liberal position and organizes itself in the form of the traditional liberal parties. These parties are included in the overview.
- Part of this mainstream is more right-wing, emphasizing classical liberal issues and concentrating on economic liberalism. This is, for example, the origin of libertarianism. Many people consider this a separate political theory/current. Others argue that these parties are still liberal parties. Therefore they are included in the overview.
- Another part of the mainstream is more left-wing. It embraces and emphasizes democratic reforms and often strives for social reforms. These parties sometimes prefer to name themselves radical or progressive liberal and are generally quite positive about the role of the state in the economy, by advocating Keynesianism for example, while continuing to support a market economy. United States liberalism developed out of this tradition, also referred to as social liberalism. Progressive liberals tend to use labels such as "Radical", "Progressive", "Free-thinking" or simply "Democratic" instead of "Liberal". These parties are included in the overview.
- For some liberals this does not go far enough: they joined social democratic parties. They are not included in the list.
- Next to these development one sees the rise of new centrist or pragmatic parties that share liberal values and develop into liberal or similar parties. These parties are included in the overview too.
- Finally one sees liberals joining parties with a broader political range. This happens especially in countries where the electoral system favors a two-party system.
- Note: In some cases the liberal current has steered into a populist direction (e.g. the Freedom Party of Austria), while in other cases populist parties have adopted the word "liberal" in their names (e.g. the Liberal Democratic Party of Russia and the Lithuanian Liberal Democratic Party. These parties have only a tenuous connection - if any - to liberalism.
Many liberal or similar parties are members of the Liberal International and/or of its regional partners, like the European Liberal Democrat and Reform Party and the Council of Asian Liberals and Democrats. Generally, membership in these international organizations is an indication that a party is indeed liberal. Therefore, all members are listed. However, some of them are quite centrist parties whose liberal character is disputed by some.
International organizations of parties
- Liberal International
- ELDR (ALDE)
- Africa Liberal Network
- Liberal Network for Latin America
Parliamentary parties and other parties with substantial support
- This list includes also parties which were represented in the last previous legislature and still exists as well as some banned or exiles parties (Burma, Cuba). Liberals might be active in other parties, but that is no reason to include a party.
- See the remarks above about the criteria. Minor parties are listed below
- There are very few liberal political parties in Algeria. Ahd 54 and the Algerian Natural Law Party may be considered liberal. The main Berber party, the Rally for Culture and Democracy (Rassemblement pour la Culture et la Démocratie) could be considered to embrace some liberal values.
- In Angola, the liberal Liberal Democratic Party (Partido Liberal Democratico, member LI) is a small liberal party.
- In Benin, the Rebirth Party of Benin (Parti de la renaissance du Bénin), might be considered a liberal party, but its exact profile is not available.
- In Burkina Faso, the Alliance for Democracy and Federation (Alliance pour la Démocratie et la Fédération), might be considered a liberal party, but it exact profile is not available.
- In Cape Verde, the Movement for Democracy (Movimento para a Democracia), might be considered a liberal party, but its exact profile is not available.
- In Côte d'Ivoire, the Rally of the Republicans (Rassemblement des Republicains, member LI) is the liberal, main opposition party.
- In Egypt, the Democratic Front Party (Hizb al-Gabha Al-dimocratia) and the New Delegation Party (Hizb al-Wafd-al-Jadid) could be considered "liberal parties". The newest liberal party in Egypt is El-Ghad Party (Tomorrow's Party) led by the opposition leader Ayman Nour . Also, the newly established Free Egyptians Party. See for more information: Liberalism in Egypt.
- In Equatorial Guinea, the National Democratic Union of Equatorial Guinea (Unión Democratica Nacional de Guinea Ecuatorial, member LI) claims to be a liberal party.
- In Gambia, the United Democratic Party, might be considered a liberal party, but it exact profile is not available.
- In Ghana, the New Patriotic Party is a right of center liberal party that is unclear about its international affiliations.
- In Kenya, the Liberal Democratic Party might be considered a liberal party.
- In Malawi, the liberal character of the United Democratic Front is despite its membership of the LI disputable. The Democratic Progressive Party was formed in 2005 by President Bingu wa Mutharika after a dispute with the UDF. There were allegations that members of the former governing UDF did not adequately tackle corruption. It is unclear if the party will be ideological or personalist in style.
- In Morocco, two center-right parties, the Constitutional Union (Union Constitutionnelle) and the Popular Movement (Mouvement Populaire) are both member of the LI. However both are conservative in social issues, something abnormal for a true liberal party.
- In Mozambique, the Liberal Democratic Party of Mozambique (Partido Liberal e Democrático de Moçambique) and the Social Liberal and Democratic Party (Partido Social-Liberal e Democrático) claim to be liberal parties, but both lost parliamentary representation.
- In Senegal, the Senegalese Democratic Party (Parti Démocratique Sénégalais, member LI) is a liberal party with a strong personalist character. See for more information: Liberalism in Senegal.
- In Seychelles, the Seychelles National Party (observer LI) is a liberal party.
- In South Africa, the Democratic Alliance (member LI) is a liberal party. See for more information: Liberalism in South Africa.
- In Sudan, the United Democratic Liberal Party which is not (member LI) is a social-liberal party.
- In Tanzania, the Civic United Front (Chama Cha Wananchi), member LI) and the United Democratic Party, observer LI are liberal parties.
- In Tunisia, the Social Liberal Party (Parti Social Libéral, observer LI) is a more or less liberal party.
- In Zambia, the main opposition party, the United Party for National Development (observer LI) takes a liberal position in the political spectrum.
- In Zimbabwe, liberalism is not organized, but the left-leaning opposition Movement for Democratic Change includes liberals and social democrats opposed to President Robert Mugabe.
In many Latin American countries, liberalism and radicalism have been associated with generally left-of-center political movements such as Colombia's Liberal Party, historically concerned mostly with effecting government decentralization and regional autonomy (liberals were influential in the total dissolution of at least two defunct countries, the United Provinces of Central America and Gran Colombia) and separation of church and state. At times, the anti-clerical and secularist stances promoted by Latin American liberals have resulted in limitations on the civil rights of clergy or others associated with the Church (as in Mexico, where law still prohibits priests from public office). Liberalism in North America has a different background.
- In Argentina, the Radical Civic Union (Unión Civica Radical) historically was a progressive-liberal party, while nowadays it adheres to the Socialist International and its platform is a combination of liberal and social democratic ideas. Recreate for Growth (Recrear para el Crecimiento) had been a short lived attempt to form a market liberal party and has observer status in the Liberal International. This party was in alliance with conservative-liberal Republican Proposal (Propuesta Republicana). Also smaller parties, such as the Union of the Democratic Centre (Unión del Centro Democrático), the Progressive Democratic Party (Partito Democrata Progresista), the Liberal Party of Corrientes (Partito Liberal de Corrientes) and the Democratic Party of Mendoza (Partido Demócrata Mendoza), adhere to conservative-liberal priciples. On the libertarian side, stands the Liberal Libertarian Party (Partido Liberal Libertario), whose focus is on free markets and individual rights.
- In Aruba, the character of the Aruban Liberal Organization (Organisacion Liberal Arubiano) is not clear. The party lost parliamentary representation in the 2005 election.
- In Bahamas, the dominant party is the left of center liberal Progressive Liberal Party.
- In Bolivia, the Liberal Party was dominant until 1952.(Main article: Liberalism in Bolivia).
- In Brazil, Liberalism (in a general, international acceptance) is currently unrepresented, and there are no mainstream parties currently holding unambiguous liberal principles nor any members of the Liberal International. While at least three parties label themselves as "liberal", the Party of the Liberal Front (Partido da Frente Liberal), re-named Democrats (Democratas) in 2007, is actually a conservative party. The Liberal party (Partido Liberal), re-named Republic Party (Partido da Republica) in 2006, is a populist-conservative party with links to religious organizations, and the Social Liberal Party (Partido Social Liberal) can be considered a liberal party in the US sense.(Main article: Liberalism in Brazil).
- In Canada, Liberal refers mainly to the policies and ideas of the Liberal Party of Canada/Parti Libéral du Canada (member LI), the most frequent governing party of Canada for the last century and one of the largest liberal parties in the world. The Liberal Party of Canada has in the past generally supported a welfare state, but now is most simply regarded as a party of the centre-left. The Quebec Liberal Party and British Columbia Liberal Party combine liberalism with more neo-liberal ideas. The Libertarian Party of Canada centres itself on free markets and individual liberty. (Main article: Liberalism in Canada).
- In Chile, originally the Social Democrat Radical Party (Partido Radical Social-Democráta, member SI) was a left of center liberal party, but nowadays it is a social democratic party. (Main article: Liberalism and radicalism in Chile).
- In Colombia, the liberal current developed into the Colombian Liberal Party (Partido Liberal Colombiano, despite its name an active member of the SI), which is a left of center, somewhat populist party, somewhere between liberalism and social democracy. Newer parties like Partido Cambio Radical and Social National Unity Party have taken classical liberal ideas. (Main article: Liberalism in Colombia).
- In Costa Rica, the Libertarian Movement Party (Partido Movimiento Libertario, observer LI) is a classical liberal (libertarian) party.
- In Cuba, it have been legal to form political parties since 1992, but only the Communist Party of Cuba is allowed to be the ruling party. The three liberal parties Liberal Democratic Party (Partido Liberal Democratico, observer LI), Democratic Solidarity Party (Partido Solidaridad Democratica, observer LI), Cuban Liberal Union (Unión Liberal Cubana, member of the Liberal International) and the Cuban Liberal Movement (Movimiento Liberal Cubano) is are existing and got their location in Havana, but they are not allowed to get in elections.
- In Dominican Republic, the originally left-wing Dominican Liberation Party (Partido de la Liberacíon Dominicana) developed into a center liberal party.
- In Ecuador, the Alfarista Radical Front (Frente Radical Alfarista) and the Ecuadorian Radical Liberal Party (Partido Liberal Radical Ecuatoriana) are two small remainders of the traditional liberal current. (Main article: Liberalism and radicalism in Ecuador).
- In Greenland, the Feeling of Community Party (Atássut) is a right of center liberal party, as are the Democrats.
- In Grenada, the National Democratic Congress is a center liberal party.
- In Honduras, the Liberal Party of Honduras (Partido Liberal de Honduras, member LI) is the traditional center liberal party. (Main article: Liberalism in Honduras).
- In Mexico, liberalism is represented by the Partido Nueva Alianza (New Alliance Party, member LI and Liberal Network for Latin America). "(Main article: Liberalism in Mexico)."
- In Nicaragua, the liberal character of the right-wing Constitutional Liberal Party (Partido Liberal Constitucionalista, former member LI) is disputable. (Main article: Liberalism in Nicaragua).
- In Panama, the National Liberal Party (Partido Liberal Nacional), observer LI is a right of center liberal party, as is the Nationalist Republican Liberal Movement (Partido Movimiento Liberal Republicano Nacionalista). (Main article: Liberalism in Panama).
- In Paraguay, the Authentic Radical Liberal Party (Partido Liberal Radical Auténtico, member LI) is a left of center liberal party. (Main article: Liberalism and radicalism in Paraguay).
- In Peru, the only political party from classical liberalism roots is Liberal Party of Peru, founded in April 2003. Other parties as the Popular Action (Acción Popular) and the Union for Peru (Unión por el Perú) are more or less liberal parties. (Main article: Liberalism in Peru).
- In Puerto Rico, the Popular Democratic Party (Partido Popular Democrático) is a left of center liberal party.
- In Suriname, the Democratic Alternative '91 (Democratisch Alternatief '91) is a center liberal party.
- In the United States, the primary use of the term liberal is at some variance with European and worldwide usage. In the United States today it is most associated with the definition of modern liberalism which is a combination of social liberalism, public welfare and a mixed economy, which is in contrast to classical liberalism. In the 19th century it was not a common term in American philosophy or politics, partially because the two main parties were a mixture of populist and nationalist elements (indeed, conservatism was not a common term until the mid-20th century as well). The Democratic Party was the party of free trade, low tariffs and laissez-faire entrepreneurialism, while the Republican Party advocated national citizenship, transparency and government efforts to stabilize the currency. Liberalism in the United States was primarily defined by the self-proclaimed liberal presidents Woodrow Wilson and Franklin Roosevelt. While the emphasis on mutual collaboration through liberal institutions as an alternative to the threat and use of force remained consistent with international liberalism, United States liberals also claimed that individuals have a right to expect the government to guarantee social justice. This was in part a consequence of the influence of the ideas of British economist John Maynard Keynes on Franklin D. Roosevelt's New Deal. The New Deal had the effect of stealing the thunder of social democratic forces and the necessity to prevent social unrest strengthened this development. As McCarthyism gave the terms socialism and even social democracy a meaning synonymous with communism in the U.S., many to the left of center moderated their views, aligning with the New Deal liberals. The Democratic Party is identified as the liberal party within the broader definition of liberalism thus putting it in contrast with most other parties listed here. Democrats advocate more social freedoms, affirmative action, and a mixed economy (and therefore modern liberalism). The Republican Party supports strong free-market and libertarian views on the economy (and therefore economic liberalism) mixed with strong aspects of social conservatism. The Libertarian Party is the third largest political party in the United States, (though still only getting 1-2% of the vote in congressional elections), and particularly centers itself on free markets and individual liberty, which is more in line with classical liberalism. (Main article: Liberalism in the United States)
- In Uruguay, liberalism organized itself in the nineteenth century in the Colorado (or Red) Party, (Partido Colorado) nowadays an heterogonous party, divided in factions ranging from conservatism to social democracy. Its general profile is more or less liberal. (Main article: Liberalism in Uruguay).
- In Venezuela, liberalism was a strong force in the nineteenth and beginning of the twentieth century. Nowadays there are three important classical liberal movements (still no parties): Organization for the Liberal Democracy in Venezuela (Organización por la Democracia Liberal en Venezuela), a classical liberal, pro-capitalism think-tank; Liberal Democratic Movement (Movimiento Demócrata Liberal) and "Rumbo Propio para el Zulia" from Maracaibo, Zulia, a classical liberal autonomist movement. They are going to create together a political party in the next years. (Main article: Liberalism in Venezuela).
Liberalism has or had some tradition in some countries. Nowadays it is a growing current in East Asia, but in many of these countries liberals tend not to use the label liberal.
- Armenia, Azerbaijan, Cyprus, Georgia, Russia, and Turkey are listed under Europe.
- In Bangladesh, the Bangladesh Liberal Democratic Party is a small liberal democratic party.
- In Burma, the National Council of the Union of Burma, member CALD, is active in exile.
- In Cambodia, the Kanapak Sam Rainsy (Sam Rainsy Party, member CALD, claims to be a more or less liberal party, though some dispute this and consider it a xenophobic party.
- In Hong Kong, the Democratic Party is a liberal party, strongly emphasizing the need of democratic reforms. The Civic Party is also a liberal party. The Liberal Party is often considered to be a conservative, pro-business party.
- In India, liberalism has became a strong current and nowadays it is unrepresented. (Main article: Liberalism in India).
- In Iran, liberalism is forbidden and its members have been killed in the past. The Liberal Democratic Party of Iran is forced to exist in exile (based in Sweden). (Main article: Liberalism in Iran).
- In Israel, Shinui (שינוי, in English Change, member LI) is a strongly anti-clerical, market liberal party without parliamentary representation since 2006. One of its founders, some of its members, and many of its voters joined the new Kadima Party. The center-right Likud calls itself a "National-Liberal Party."
- In Japan, the word liberal is used by the main conservative party, the Liberal Democratic Party (Jiyu Minshuto). The Democratic Party (Minshu-to) is a social-liberal/social-democratic party. The Liberal League (Jiyu Rengo) was considered to be a free-market liberal party. (Main article: Liberalism in Japan).
- In Korea, South, the disbanded Uri Party (Yeollin Uri Dang), the UNDP (Daetonghap Minju Sindang) and the Democratic Party (Min-ju-dang) and Korea Creative Party are left of center liberal parties. (Main article: Liberalism in South Korea).
- In Lebanon, the National Liberal Party (Hizb al-Ahrar al-Watani) is a liberal pro-independence party.
- In Malaysia, the Malaysian People's Movement Party (Parti Gerakan Rakyat Malaysia, member CALD) seems to be a more or less liberal party.
- In Philippines, the Liberal Party, member LI, CALD) is a center liberal party. (Main article: Liberalism in the Philippines).
- In Singapore, due to the electoral system the liberal Singapore Democratic Party (member CALD) is not represented in parliament. The less intransigent liberal Singapore People's Party is represented in parliament.
- In Sri Lanka, the Liberal Party of Sri Lanka is a small liberal party.
- In Taiwan (Republic of China), the Democratic Progressive Party (Min-chu Chin-pu Tang, member LI, CALD) is a left-of-center liberal party. The Taiwan Solidarity Union is a progressive-centrist party characterised primarily by its Taiwanese nationalism and derives its membership from both the Chinese Nationalist Party's former moderate and Taiwan-oriented fringe and DPP supporters disgruntled by the party's moderation on the question of Taiwanese sovereignty. Its liberal character is questionable, although it its part of the DPP's left-of-centre and pro-Taiwanese Independence Pan-Green alliance (in contrast with the conservative Chinese Nationalist Party (Kuomintang) and People First Party.) (Main article: Liberalism in Taiwan).
- In Thailand, the Democratic Party (Pak Prachatipat, a member of CALD) is the liberal party. (Main article: Liberalism in Thailand).
In general, liberalism in Europe is a political movement that supports a broad tradition of individual liberties and constitutionally-limited and democratically accountable government. This usually encompasses the belief that government should act to alleviate poverty and other social problems, but not through radical changes to the structure of society. European liberals are divided on the degree of government intervention in economy, but generally they favor limited intervention.
In most European countries, particularly in northern European countries, Liberalism refers to somebody who emphasizes individual liberty in economical, social, cultural and ethical topics and a free market policy with some degree of government intervention. It generally does not have the particular connotations of radicalism that the word carries in the United States, though it does not exclude them either.
In France and in some southern European countries, the word is used either to refer to the traditional liberal anti-clericalism or to economic liberalism. However, in recent years in France, the word is being increasingly used by proponents of laissez-faire capitalism and minarchists to describe themselves; in reaction, ultra-libéral is a pejorative term aimed by a large section of the French left-wing against those whom they regard as having extreme capitalist views. The more moderate form of political liberalism in France was long associated more with the Radical Party, leading to the use of the term radicals to refer to political liberals. The French Radicals tend to be more statist than most European liberals, but share the liberal values on other issues.
In France and in some southern European countries, the word liberal does not always include the suggestion of general support for individual rights that it carries in northern Europe due to its historic matters. More, in those countries liberalism is associated with the right-wing, as it is also in Germany, the Netherlands, Denmark and Switzerland, while it is more closely associated with the left-wing in the United Kingdom, which has a political history in some ways similar with that of the United States, and in some Scandinavian countries. Anyway it is to remember that, before the rise of democratic socialism and of social democracy, liberals were the left-wing opposed to the right-wing conservatives. In many countries liberals were replaced by social-democrats or pulled towards the centre or the right-wing. Liberal ideas were absorbed by the conservatives concerning the economy and the individualist vision of men and society, especially in those countries in which liberals disappeared as an independent political force.
In general European liberals are divided between conservative liberals, social liberals and liberals combining both elements of conservative liberalism (especially on economic issues) and social liberalism (especially on moral issues). In European countries, liberals tend to label themselves either as liberals, or as radicals, centrists or democrats (though some would dispute the liberal character of the Northern European centrist parties). The European Liberal Democrat and Reform Party (ELDR) is a mixture of all these brands of liberalism.
- In Albania, liberalism is weak. Two parties could be considered to embrace liberal values: the Democratic Alliance Party (Partia Aleanca Demokratike, member LI, ELDR) and the Unity for Human Rights Party (Partia Bashkimi për të Drejtat e Njeriut), which is the party of the ethnic minorities. (Main article: Liberalism in Albania.)
- In Andorra, the Liberal Party of Andorra (Partit Liberal d'Andorra, member LI, ELDR) is a right of center liberal party and became the dominant political party.
- In Armenia, traditional liberalism does not play a role any more, but the Republican Party of Armenia (Hayastani Hanrapetakan Kusaktsutyun) joined the ELDR group in the Council of Europe. (Main article: Liberalism in Armenia.)
- In Austria, liberalism almost disappeared, when the Liberal Forum (Liberales Forum, member LI, ELDR) became a micro-party. Sometimes the name of the main right-wing populist party, the Freedom Party of Austria, a former member of the LI until 1993, is wrongly translated as Liberal party of Austria. (Main article: Liberalism in Austria.)
- In Belarus, liberalism is under threat. One of the main opposition parties is the liberal United Civil Party of Belarus (Abjadnanaja Hramadzianskaja Partyja Biełarusi).
- The Belgian party system is divided by language. In Flanders the liberal Open Flemish Liberals and Democrats (member LI, ELDR), comprising both market and social liberals, is one of the dominant parties. Smaller liberal parties are the Social Liberal Party, now part of Groen!, and the recent more populist right List Dedecker. In the French speaking part of the country the nowadays center-liberal Reformist Movement (member LI, ELDR) is one of the mayor parties. Affiliated with this party is the German speaking Party for Freedom and Progress. (Main article: Liberalism in Belgium.)
- In Bosnia-Herzegovina, liberalism is weak, because of the domination by ethnic parties. A small and rather unsuccessful liberal party is the Liberal Democratic Party (Liberalno demokratska stranka, member ELDR).
- In Bulgaria, organized liberalism was initially quite unsuccessful. Liberalism is now represented by the mainly Turkish minority party Movement for Rights and Freedoms (Dviženie za prava i svobodi, observer LI, member ELDR) and the National Movement for Stability and Progress (Nacionalno Dviženie za Stabilnost i Vazhod, member LI, ELDR), both taking a more or less liberal position. (Main article: Liberalism and radicalism in Bulgaria.)
- In Croatia, liberalism is very divided. One could distinguish three parties: the center Croatian People's Party-Liberal Democrats (Croatian Hrvatska narodna stranka - Liberalni Demokrati, member ELDR), the left of center Liberal Party (Liberalna stranka, member ELDR, observer LI) and the right of center Croatian Social Liberal Party (Hrvatska socijalno liberalna stranka, member LI, ELDR). (Main article: Liberalism in Croatia).
- In Cyprus, the United Democrats (Enomeni Dimokrates, member ELDR) are a left of center liberal party. In North Cyprus the left of center Peace and Democracy Movement (Bariş ve Demokrasi Hareketi), might be considered a liberal party, but it exact profile is not available. See also Liberalism in Cyprus.
- In the Czech Republic, liberalism is clearly unsuccessful. . Four parliamentary liberal parties work together, the Civic Democratic Alliance (Obcanska demokraticka alliance, member ELDR), the Freedom Union-Democratic Union (Unie Svobody - Demokratická unie) and the Liberal Reform Party (Liberální Reformní Strana) and the Path of Change (Cesta zmeny, member of EDP). They were unsuccessful at the last European elections, obtained only 1,69%. At these elections the European Democrats (Evropští demokraté) proved to be a liberal alternative, but it joined the EPP. (Main article: Liberalism in the Czech lands).
- In Denmark, all major parties support liberalism in one form or another, and three parties market themselves as liberal: The left of center Danish Social Liberal Party (Det Radikale Venstre, member LI, ELDR), the right of center social liberal/market liberal Venstre and the right-wing market liberals Liberal Alliance (member LI, ELDR). (Main article: Liberalism and radicalism in Denmark).
- In Estonia, the Estonian Reform Party (Eesti Reformierakond, member LI), ELDR is a free market liberal party. The liberal character of the centrist (centre-left) Estonian Centre Party (Eesti Keskerakond, member LI), ELDR) can be disputed. (Main article: Liberalism in Estonia).
- In Faroe Islands, the Union Party (Sambandsflokkurin) and the Self-Government Party (Sjálvstýrisflokkurin) were or are aligned with the Danish liberal parties.
- In Finland, the dominant LI and ELDR member party is the original agrarian Finnish Center (Suomen Keskusta), however the liberal character of this party is disputed. The Swedish minority party Swedish People's Party (Svenska Folkpartiet i Finland, member LI, ELDR) has a more clear liberal profile. The original liberal current is now organized in the Liberals (Liberaalit), a very small extra-parliamentary party. At the autonomous islands of Åland the Liberals for Åland (Liberalerna på Åland) are a dominant force. (Main article: Liberalism and centrism in Finland).
- In France, the Radical Party of the Left (Parti radical de gauche) is a member of ELDR but not of LI. Anyway France had an important liberal tradition, generally associated to Republicanism, from which the right and the left of the political spectrum were generated. On the right-wing there were the Republicans, which organized themselves in 1901-03 in the moderate-liberal Democratic Republican Alliance and in the liberal-conservative Republican Federation; on the left-wing the Radicals, which founded the Republican, Radical and Radical-Socialist Party in 1901. After World War II, the Republicans gathered in the liberal-conservative National Center of Independents and Peasants, from which the conservative-liberal Independent Republicans seceded in 1962. The original centre-left Radical Party was a declining force in French politics until 1972 when it joined the centre-right, causing the split of Radical-Socialist faction and the foundation of the Left Radical Party, closely associated to the Socialist Party. In 1978 both the Republican Party (successor of the Independent Republicans) and the Radical Party were founding components, alongside with Centre of Social Democrats, of the Union for French Democracy, an alliance of liberal and Christian-democratic forces. The Republican Party, re-founded as Liberal Democracy in 1997 and re-shaped as a free-market libertarian party, left UDF in 1998 and merged in the conservative Union for a Popular Movement, of which it represents the libertarian wing. Also the Radical Party left UDF in 2002 in order to join UMP, of which it is the main social-liberal component, as an associate party. In some ways we can say that the Republican tradition and the Radical one are now re-composed in UMP. Anyway the lack of a true liberal and libertarian force in France led to the creation in 2006 of Liberal Alternative, whose chances of success are unclear. (Main article: Liberalism and radicalism in France).
- In Georgia, the United National Movement (Nacionaluri Modraoba) is a liberal pro-western party oriented on North-Atlantic integration.
- In Germany, the Free Democratic Party (Freie Demokratische Partei, member LI, ELDR) is a center and market liberal party. (Main article: Liberalism in Germany).
- In Gibraltar, the Liberal Party of Gibraltar (member LI) is a liberal party.
- In Greece, the liberal current disappeared, leading to liberals joining the right-of-center New Democracy and the left wing PASOK parties. Meanwhile new liberal initiatives have been taken, like e.g. the Liberal Alliance (Greek: Φιλελεύθερη Συμμαχία Fileleftheri Simmakhia ). (Main article: Liberalism in Greece).
- In Hungary, the Alliance of Free Democrats (Szabad Demokratak Szövetsege, member LI), ELDR) is a center market liberal party. (Main article: Liberalism and radicalism in Hungary).
- In Iceland, the Progressive Party (Framsóknarflokkurinn, member LI) is an agrarian liberal party. The newly founded Liberal Party (Frjáslyndi Flokkurin) seems to be a liberal party. (Main article: Liberalism and centrism in Iceland).
- In Ireland, the centre-right Progressive Democrats (member ELDR) were a liberal party on social and economic issues.
- In Italy, liberalism became strongly divided after the shake up of the political system. Liberals are now divided over the centre-right Forza Italia (a merger of liberal and Christian-democratic forces), the centre-left Democracy is Freedom - Daisy (a merger Christian-democratic and social-liberal forces, including a split from the Federation of Italian Liberals, only observer member of LI), the centre-left European Republican Movement (member ELDR), the old centre-left - nowadays centre-right - Italian Republican Party (member ELDR), the alternative liberal Italian Radicals (observer member ELDR) and their most recent split, the libertarian Liberal Reformers, which joined the centre-right. Also the populist-centrist Italy of Values is a member of ELDR, although it is very difficult to classify it as a liberal party in whichever sense. Most members of the late Italian Liberal Party (refounded as a very small party in 2004) and many former Republicans have joined Forza Italia, which is often presented and defined in Italy as a liberal party, and the other parties of the House of Freedoms coalition. This is the reason why the term 'liberals' is more often used when speaking of the Centre-Right coalition, dominated by Forza Italia, which combines economic liberalism with freedom of conscience on ethical matters. (Main article: Liberalism and radicalism in Italy).
- In Latvia, the Latvian Way (Latvian Way, member LI, ELDR) is a right of center market liberal party. (Main article: Liberalism in Latvia).
- In Lithuania, the Liberal and Centre Union (Liberalų ir centro sąjunga, member LI), ELDR) is a center liberal party and the New Union Social Liberals (Naujoji Sąjunga (socialliberalai), observer LI), member ELDR) is a left of center liberal party. (Main article: Liberalism in Lithuania).
- In Luxembourg, the Democratic Party (Demokratesch Partei//Parti Démocratique, member LI, ELDR) is the traditional liberal party. (Main article: Liberalism in Luxembourg).
- In Malta there are two liberal parties: Alleanza Liberal-Demokratika Malta and Alpha Liberal Democratic Party.
- In Moldova, liberalism is divided over the social liberal Party Alliance Our Moldova (Partidul Alianţa «Moldova Noastră»), a merger of liberal and social democrat forces and the market liberal Social Liberal Party (Partidul Social-Liberal). (Main article: Liberalism in Moldova).
- In Montenegro, liberalism is organized in the Liberal Party of Montenegro(Liberalna Partija Crne Gore), more or less a liberal party. (Main article: Liberalism in Montenegro).
- In the Netherlands, liberalism is divided over two parties. The center social-liberal Democrats 66 (Democraten 66, member LI, ELDR) and the right-of-center conservative-liberal People's Party for Freedom and Democracy (Volkspartij voor Vrijheid en Democratie, member LI, ELDR). Furthermore, in 2004 the Green Left started profiling itself as a 'leftist liberal' party, thus possibly breaking with its socialist roots. (Main article: Liberalism in the Netherlands).
- In Norway, Venstre (litt. Left, member LI) is a centrist liberal party. (Main article: Liberalism in Norway).
- In Poland, the Democratic Party (member ELDR) is a centre-liberal party. It did not succeed in entering parliament in the 2005 election. Civic Platform is economically liberal. (Main article: Liberalism in Poland).
- In Portugal, liberalism was a strong force in history. The Social Democratic Party was once an International Liberal member, but left the organisation in 1996, and has taken a more conservative orientation since then. However, many observers still see it as a conservative-liberal party. Currently there is small movement called Movimento Liberal Social trying to achieve the status of political party.(Main article: Liberalism in Portugal).
- In the Republic of Macedonia, the liberals are divided over the Liberal Democratic Party (Liberalna Demokraticka Partija, member LI), part of the left of center government coalition and the Liberal Party of Macedonia (Liberalna Partija na Makedonija, member ELDR), part of the right of center opposition coalition. (Main article: Liberalism in the Republic of Macedonia).
- In Romania, the National Liberal Party (Partidul Naţional Liberal, member LI and ELDR) is a right-wing liberal party.(Main article: Liberalism in Romania).
- In Russia, there is no actual liberal party. Yabloko (Yabloko, Russian Democratic Party, Jabloko - Rossijskaja Demokratičeskaja Partija, member LI) and the Right Cause (Pravoye Delo, member IDU) are more or less sharing the ideas of liberalism. While Yabloko is social liberal party, the Right Cause can be seen as a democratic conservative market party, but still both of them would be rather called socialist parties when compared to the parties of Western Europe or United States of America. The so-called Liberal Democratic Party of Russia is not at all liberal; it is a nationalist, right-wing populist party. (Main article Liberalism in Russia).
- In the small country of San Marino, the Popular Alliance of Sammarinese Democrats for the Republic (Alleanza Popolare dei Democratici Sammarinesi per la Repubblica) is a center liberal party.
- In Serbia, the Liberal Democratic Party is the only functioning liberal party with parliamentary representation. The liberal character of the Liberals of Serbia (Liberali Srbije, observer LI, member ELDR) is disputed due to their campaign for the 2003 election, in which it lost parliamentary representation. (Main article: Liberalism in Serbia).
- In Slovakia, the Alliance of the New Citizen (Aliancia Nového Občana, observer LI, member ELDR) is a right of center market liberal party. (Main article: Liberalism in Slovakia).
- In Slovenia, the Liberal Democracy of Slovenia (Liberalna demokracija Slovenije, member LI, ELDR) is a left of center liberal party. (Main article: Liberalism in Slovenia).
- In Spain, there is a long tradition of liberalism. This ended with the Franco dictatorship. On a national level there were attempts to establish liberal parties, but they did not succeed. On a regional level, the Canarian Coalition (Coalición Canaria) and the Democratic Convergence of Catalonia (Convergència Democrática de Catalunya) are regionalist liberal parties, but also nationalist. (Main article: Liberalism and radicalism in Spain).
- In Sweden, the Liberal People's Party (Folkpartiet Liberalerna, member LI, ELDR) is a center liberal party. The Center Party (Centerpartiet, member ELDR) is an agrarian party that gradually developed into a more or less liberal party. The liberal character is however disputed. (Main article: Liberalism and centrism in Sweden).
- In Switzerland, both the Free Democratic Party of Switzerland (Freisinnig-Demokratische Partei der Schweiz//Parti Radical-Démocratique Suisse, member LI), ELDR and the Liberal Party of Switzerland (Liberale Partei der Schweiz//Parti Libéral Suisse, member LI) are right of center liberal parties. (Main article: Liberalism and radicalism in Switzerland).
- In Turkey, liberalism was never a strong force, though there were some significant liberal parties. Today only active liberal party is Liberal Democratic Party (Main article: Liberalism in Turkey).
- In Ukraine, the position of liberalism is unclear. The Liberal Party (Liberalna Partia, observer LI) is a small liberal party and the Electoral Blok Juli Tymoshenko (Viborcyj Blok Julii Tymošenko) seems to develop into a more or less liberal party. A clear liberal party is the Our Ukraine (Naša Ukrajina), which should be distinguished from the People's Union Our Ukraine. (Main article: Liberalism in Ukraine).
- In United Kingdom, liberalism is now organized mainly in the centre-left Liberal Democrats (member LI, ELDR). The Liberal Democrats in Great Britain generally support social liberalism, while taking a centrist to centre-left, largely pragmatic view on economics, supporting economic freedom and market competition in principle but often advocating more state/government provision or regulation to support particular policy objectives. Generally identified with the term 'Liberal' in current UK politics, they are the third largest political party, taking 23% of the vote in the last election, but due to the First Past the Post electoral system their representation in parliament is much smaller; it has around 10% of the seats at Westminster. Generally therefore, in the contemporary UK, 'Liberal' refers to an ideology advocating broad social freedoms, but less attached to economic liberalism. The Liberal Democrats, like the British Labour Party, do not contest elections in Northern Ireland, but instead urge their supporters to vote for the Alliance Party of Northern Ireland (member LI, ELDR), which was formed in 1970 as a non-ideological cross-community party but has since come to regard itself as Northern Ireland's liberal party, and like the Liberal Democrats tends toward social liberalism. The Liberal Democrats, sometimes shortened to Lib Dems, are currently the junior party in a governing coalition with the Conservative Party (UK). Their leader, Nick Clegg is the current Deputy Prime Minister with other Lib Dems taking up other cabinet and ministerial positions There is a small splinter group of the Liberal Democrats, the Liberal Party, which consists of those Liberals who objected to the merger of the old Liberal Party to the Social Democrats in 1988. (Main article Liberalism in the United Kingdom)
- In Australia, the Liberal Party is a party considered to be of the centre-right. Within the Liberal Party of Australia, conservatism and monetarist economics are both in a position of dominance. Many would argue that this party is indeed a liberal party, simply a classical liberal party and that it is the perception of what liberalism is that has changed, not the Liberal Party (which promotes the free market approach that liberals worldwide used to promote before the 20th century). Other would stress conservatism as its ideology. The term small-l liberal generally refers to someone who champions civil liberties and progressive causes such as Australian republicanism and reconciliation with Indigenous Australians, as in parties such as the Australian Democrats, which began its life as a fusion of social-liberals disaffected with the Liberal Party. (Main article: Australia).
- In New Zealand, Liberalism is not organized anymore, although the Liberal Party was the first organised political party, and the First Liberal Government from 1891 to 1912 was responsible for many reforms. Liberalism nowadays refers to a support for individual liberties and limited government. The term is generally used with a reference to a particular policy area, e.g. "market liberalism" or "social liberalism". Unqualified liberalism is less common; in its extreme form it is known by the American term libertarianism. The left of centre New Zealand Democratic Party takes a more or less progressive liberal position in the spectrum, but lost popular support. ACT New Zealand is a classical liberal or libertarian party. (Main article: Liberalism in New Zealand).
- In the Solomon Islands, the Solomon Islands Liberal Party considers itself a liberal party.
Non-parliamentary liberal parties
- Afghanistan: Liberal Democratic Party of Afghanistan
- Armenia: Armenian Liberal Democratic Party, Armenian Democratic Liberal Party, Liberal Democratic Union of Armenia
- Australia: Liberal Democratic Party
- Austria: Liberal Forum (member LI and ELDR), The Democrats, The Social Liberals
- Bangladesh: Liberal Party Bangladesh
- Canada: Libertarian Party of Canada
- Chile: Liberal Party
- Czech Republic: Path for Change (member ELDR), Party for an open society
- Dominican Republic: Liberal Party of the Dominican Republic
- Ecuador: Movement Forwards Ecuador (Moviminiento Fuerza Ecuador, observer LI)
- France: Pole of freedoms, the French liberal movement, Liberal Alternative
- Greece: The Liberals
- Haiti Liberal Party
- India: Swatantra Bharat Party, Freedom Team of India
- Iran: Liberal Democratic Party of Iran
- Italy: Federation of Italian Liberals (observer LI), Italian Liberal Party
- Kosovo: Liberal Party of Kosovo (observer LI, member ELDR)
- Laos: Lao Liberal Democratic Party
- Mongolia: Mongolian Liberal Democratic Party
- Netherlands Antilles: Democratic Party
- Norway: Liberal People's Party
- Peru: Liberal Party of Peru
- Portugal: Liberal Social Movement
- Spain: Liberal Coalition, Mallorcan Union (member LI)
- Slovakia: Freedom and Solidarity
- Sri Lanka: Liberal Party of Sri Lanka (member LI and CALD)
- Turkey: Liberal Democratic Party (member LI)
- United Kingdom: Liberal Party, UK Libertarian Party
- United States: Libertarian Party, Personal Choice Party, Independence Party of Minnesota, Liberal Party, US Marijuana Party
- Uruguay: Liberal Party
- Venezuela: Organization for the Liberal Democracy in Venezuela, Civil Resistance, Democratic Liberal Movement, Rumbo Propio
- Liberal Manifesto of Oxford 1947
- Liberal Declaration of Oxford 1967
- Liberal Manifesto of Oxford 1997
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