Austria, officially the Republic of Austria, is a landlocked country in central Europe. It borders Germany and the Czech Republic to the north, Slovakia and Hungary to the east, Slovenia and Italy to the south, and Switzerland and Liechtenstein to the west. Its capital is the city of Vienna.
Austria is a parliamentary representative democracy consisting of nine federal states and is one of two European countries that have declared permanent neutrality, the other being Switzerland. Austria is a member of the United Nations (since 1955) and the European Union (since 1995). For the first half of 2006, Austria holds the seat of the Presidency of the EU.