Liberalism worldwide

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.


One can argue what a liberal party is. 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. 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. Progressive liberals tend to use labels such as Radical, Progressive, Free-minded or simply Democratic instead of Liberal. These parties are included in the overview.
***For some liberals this doesn’t 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
*Africa Liberal Network
*Liberal Network for Latin America
* [ CLH]

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"


Liberalism is a relatively new current for Africa. Traditionally it only existed more or less in Egypt, Senegal and especially South Africa.
*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 Liberal Party (Hizb al-Ahrar) 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) lead by the opposition leader Ayman Nour [] . "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 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.

The Americas

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, ironically enough, 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 traditional progressive-liberal party is the Radical Civic Union (Unión Civica Radical, member of the Socialist International). Nowadays it more or less adheres to a synthesis of liberal and social democratic ideas. The party Recreate for Growth (Recrear para el Crecimiento) seems to be an attempt to form a market liberal party. Some provincial conservative parties use the label "Liberal". The Union of the Democratic Centre (Unión del Centro Democrático) considers itself to be a liberal party, others see it as a conservative party. "(Main article: Liberalism and radicalism in Argentina)."
*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 center-left. The Quebec Liberal Party and British Columbia Liberal Party combine liberalism with more neo-liberal ideas. The Libertarian Party of Canada centers 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. "(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, non-communist parties are banned. This makes the three liberal parties Liberal Democratic Party (Partido Liberal Democratico, observer LI), Democratic Solidarity Party (Partido Solidaridad Democratica, observer LI) and the Cuban Liberal Movement (Movimiento Liberal Cubano) illegal. In exile the Cuban Liberal Union (Unión Liberal Cubana, member LI) is active.
* 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 was the dominant current in the nineteenth century. Nowadays it is unrepresented. "(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 usage. 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. 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 treason in the U.S., many to the left of center moderated their views, aligning with the New Deal liberals. Since approximately the Reagan era, the word "liberal" has been so much used as a derogatory term by U.S. conservatives that it led to an ever increasing number of critics of conservatism to identify with progressivism, rather than turning to liberalism. 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. The Libertarian Party, the third largest political party in the United States, though still only getting 1-2% of the vote in congressional elections, particularly centers itself on free markets and individual liberty. The Republican Party generally supports strong free-market and libertarian views on the economy. In general we can say that the Democrats support civil-rights (and therefore social liberalism), the Republicans support free-market (and therefore economic liberalism), while the Libertarians support both. "(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 Pak 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 never 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.
* 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 left of center liberal, social democratic party. The Liberal League (Jiyu Rengo) is 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) 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 Northern European countries, it 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 Southern Europe, 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 Southern Europe, the word "liberal" does not always include the suggestion of general support for individual rights that it carries in Northern Europe. 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 disappeard as an independent political force.

In general European liberals are divided between conservative liberals, social liberals and liberals combing 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 doesn't 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 Flemish Liberals and Democrats (Vlaamse Liberalen en Democraten, member LI, ELDR), comprising both market and left of center liberals, is one of the dominant parties. Smaller liberal parties are Spirit, allied with the social democrats, Vivant, allied to the VLD, and the recent more populist right List Dedecker. In the French speaking part of the country the nowadays center liberal Reformist Movement (Mouvement Réformateur, member LI, ELDR) is one of the mayor parties. Affiliated with this party is the German speaking Party for Freedom and Progress (Partei für Freiheit und Fortschritt). "(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 Simeon II (Nacionalno Dviženie Simeon Vtori, 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, theCivic 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 New Alliance (Ny Alliance, member LI, ELDR) and the right-wing market liberals Venstre, (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 island of Åland the Liberals for Åland (Liberalerna på Åland, observer LI) are a dominant force. "(Main article: Liberalism and centrism in Finland)."
* In France, there are no members of ELDR and 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 Democratic and Social Centre, 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 National Movement - Democrats (Natshhionakhuri Modraoba - Demokrathebi) has to develop a clear profile, but there are signs it will develop into a liberal party.
* In Georgia, the Republican Party of Georgia (Sakartvelos Respublikuri Partia) was founded on May 21, 1978 by group of dissidents. The Republican Party's platform from the very outset aimed at restoring the independence of Georgia, introducing political pluralism, forming democratic institutions, ensuring the independence of media, and forming the market economy. The Republican Party has become the Observer Member of Liberal International (joined Marrakesh Congress 2006). The Party prepares for becoming the member of ELDR. Young Republicans (Youth Movement of the Republican Party of Georgia)was accepted as a Candidate Member of IFLRY (The International Federation of Liberal Youth).
*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) are a liberal party on social and economic issues.
* In Italy, liberalism got 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 coscience 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, the Alpha Liberal Democratic Party is the only liberal party, founded in 2004.
* 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 left-of-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 didn't 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. It is currently the major party of the governing coalition, and provides the prime minister and most ministers of the government. "(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 Union of Right Forces (Sojuz Pravych Sil, member IDU) are more or less sharing the ideas of liberalism. While Yabloko (Yabloko, Russian Democratic Party, Jabloko - Rossijskaja Demokratičeskaja Partija, member LI) is social democratist party, the Union of Right Forces (Sojuz Pravych Sil, member IDU) 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 where attempts to establish liberal parties, but they didn't 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, 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 22% 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 Alliance Party of Northern Ireland (member LI, ELDR) is their counterpart in Northern Ireland. 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 centrist Social Democrats in 1988, which is sporadically active in local government. "(Main article Liberalism in the United Kingdom)"


Liberalism has a strong tradition in both Australia and New Zealand.
*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 are 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).Fact|date=June 2008 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. "Small-l liberals" are becoming less and less visible members of the Liberal Party. "(Main article: Australia)."
* In New Zealand, Liberalism is not organized anymore. "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: Liberty & Democracy Party
*Austria: Liberal Forum (member LI and ELDR), The Democrats (Die Demokraten)
*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
*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)
*Sri Lanka: Liberal Party of Sri Lanka (member LI and CALD)
*Turkey: Liberal Democratic Party (member LI)
*United Kingdom: Liberal 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

External links

* [ Liberal Manifesto of Oxford 1947]
* [ Liberal Declaration of Oxford 1967]
* [ Liberal Manifesto of Oxford 1997]

ee also

* Index of political parties to browse parties by name
* List of political parties to browse parties by country
* List of political parties by ideology to browse parties by name
* Membership of internationals to browse parties by membership of internationals

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