Arkiasis

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Republic of Arkiasis
Folkdom of Arkland (Anglish)
Republiken Arkland
Arksland Republiek (Hartish)
Arkish Republyk (Arkish)
Flag of Arkiasis Coat of Arms
Flag Coat of Arms
Motto: "Concordia, Libertas, Aequitas" (Latin)
"Harmony, Liberty, Equity"
Anthem: Ode to the Republic
Map of Arkiasis
Location of  Arkiasis  (dark green)

– in Nordania  (green & dark grey)
– in Esquarian Community  (green)

CapitalElendel
Largest Aspatria
Official languages Anglish
Recognised national languages Arkish, Hartish
Demonym Arkiasian
Government Federal Parliamentary Constitutional Republic
 -  Prime Minister Peter Edwards (PP)
 -  President Philip Bayer (IP)
 -  Vice President Daniel Bertelsen (PP)
Legislature Allthing
 -  Upper house Senate
 -  Lower house House of Representatives
Establishment
 -  Arkish Kingdom 927 
 -  Unification 12 February 1804 
 -  Current Republic 8 June 1895 
Area
 -  Total 623,282 km2
240,651 sq mi
 -  Water (%) 5.5
Population
 -  2017 estimate 65,000,000 (12th)
 -  2010 census 62,305,782
 -  Density 105/km2
271.9/sq mi
GDP (PPP) 2017 estimate
 -  Total $3.248 trillion (6th)
 -  Per capita $49,972 (11th)
GDP (nominal) 2017 estimate
 -  Total $3.460 trillion (6th)
 -  Per capita $53,238 (10th)
Gini (2016)negative increase 28.0
low
HDI (2016)Steady 0.921
very high
Currency Arkiasian Crown (₵/Cr) (ARC)
Time zone AST (UTC+1)
 -  Summer (DST) ADT (UTC+2)
Date format dd-mm-yyyy
yyyy-mm-dd
Drives on the right
Calling code +37
ISO 3166 code AK
Internet TLD .ak

Arkiasis (pronounced /'ɑʀ-ki-ɑ-sɪs/) officially the Republic of Arkiasis is a federal parliamentary republic located on the continent of Nordania in Northwestern Esquarium bordering the Northern Sea to the south and the Hyperborean Sea to the north. Arkasis is a Federation consisting of 12 Provinces, 1 Administrative Territory and 1 Autonomous City. Its capital is Elendel and the largest city is Aspatria. Arkiasis shares land borders to the northwest with Lanos, and to the west with Lyonsland. Arkiasis shares sea borders with Nevanmaa to the southwest and Britanno to the south. Arkiasis covers an area of 623,282 km² and has a population of 62,305,782 as of 2010, making it the largest and most populous nation on the continent of Nordania.

Arkiasis is a Republic operating under a Parliamentary structure of Government. Historically, Arkiasis was divided by the primarily Nordic north and the Anglo south resulting in a series of conflicts called the "Anglo-Nord Wars" lasting from the 10th century until unification in 1802 creating the United Kingdom of Arkiasia and Vesperia (commonly known as just Arkiasia). Following an Absolute Monarchy from 1853 to 1894 the Constitution of Arkiasis was introduced in 1895 and established a semi-presidential republic governed by the principles of a liberal democracy and the rule of law. The Constitution was rewritten in 1970 marking the transition from a semi-presidential system of government to to a parliamentary system of Government.

Arkiasis is a developed country with an advanced economy and a high human development index. It ranks among the highest in international measurements of education, healthcare, government transparency, civil and political rights, quality of life and economic prosperity. While the tertiary sector dominates the economy, the industrial sector and raw materials remain integral parts of the economical structure of the country. Arkiasis functions as a welfare state with universal healthcare and education for its citizens, and a comprehensive social welfare system.

Etymology

Originally derived from the "Arkish kingdom", a confederation of Germanic tribes inhabited by the Arkish people during Late Antiquity and the Early Middle Ages, who lived along the River Astwick, River Otford and the Melchet River along the southern coast. Upon the arrival of the Latin script and Christianity in the Middle Ages, the name was latinised to "Arkiasia". The later later eventually evolved into the modern form of "Arkiasis".

History

Early History

Arkiasis has been intermittently inhabited by Humans for tens of thousands of years. By around 6000 BC, Arkiasis was populated by people with a Neolithic culture known mainly through archaeological finds. The first human settlements in Arkiasis were concentrated around fertile Lowland areas along the coastlines. The mountainous continental interior of the nation however did not see human settlements develop until well into the Iron Age.

During the Iron Age Arkiasians lived in organised tribal groups, ruled by a chieftain. As people became more numerous, wars broke out between opposing tribes. By the 3rd century a number of large Nord tribes emerged: Alget, Cayel, Ecra, Tarkeul, Diersaad, Vremsby, Oste-Milsai, Diersaad, Kasag, Asalva, Annemund and Patalk. By the 6th century these tribes formed into a number of petty kingdoms and duchies. This situation was transformed in the beginning of the 7th century as a series of invasions by Germanic Anglo-Saxon settlers saw much of Nord kingdoms conquered as Anglo-Saxon kingdoms where formed. By the 9th century only three petty kingdoms remained, whom suffering massive defeats unified in the late 9th century as the Kingdom of Vesperia. They were successful in pushing the Anglo-Saxon kingdoms south past the Cascade Mountain Range. Anglo-Saxons became unified as the Kingdom of Arkiasia in the 10th century.

Battle between the frigate HMS Tranquility and Vesperian gunboats at Tarkeul (Elendel) Harbour in 1802.

Anglo-Nord Wars

The Kingdom of Arkiasia and the Kingdom of Vesperia where both in near-constant conflict with each other as they both sought to hold the peninsula. The motto of the Kingdom of Arkiasia "A Mari Usque Ad Mare" (from sea to sea) signified Arkiasia's main doctrine for imperialism. The border between Vesperia and Arkiasia was very fluid, with Arkiasia holding more than 3/4 of the entire peninsula at its height and less than 1/5 at its lowest point.

Unification

In 1784, the two monarchies entered a personal union when Eric III of Vesperia also became Eric I of Arkiasia. This union however did not end the Anglo-Nord conflicts and following the Anglo-Nord War of 1802-1804 (known as the Unification War) Vesperia and Arkiasia united to form the United Kingdom of Arkiasia and Vesperia (commonly known as just Arkiasia) in 1804 as outlined in the Treaty of Tarkeul, factors in favour of union being, on the Vesperian side, the economic problems caused by several brutal winters resulting in famine, and on the Arkiasisian side, securing the Gustavian line of succession.

In 1846, serious crop failures resulted in widespread hardship among peasants and the working urban poor. Widespread dissatisfaction with political leadership; demands for more participation in government and democracy; demands for freedom of press; the demands of the working classes; and an upsurge of nationalism resulted in Revolution. It ended the constitutional monarchy of King Edward I, and led to the creation of the United Republics of Arkiasia and Vesperia. This government was headed by Robert Douglas, cousin of King Edward I, who with the help of Monarchists staged a coup d'état in 1852 and established the Second Arkiasia Kingdom.

Second Kingdom

See: Kingdom of Arkiasia

Robert Douglas was the second President of Arkiasia to be elected by a direct popular vote. However, in 1852, when he was blocked by the Constitution and Parliament from running for a second term, with the help of Monarchists previously loyal to king Edward I, he staged a coup d'état on 2 December 1852 by dissolving the National Assembly without having the constitutional right to do so. This ended in the successful dissolution of the Arkiasia National Assembly, and the subsequent establishment of a Monarchy the following year. During the first years of the Kingdom, his government imposed censorship and harsh repressive measures against his opponents. Some six thousand persons were imprisoned or sent to penal colonies.

Second Republic

See: Arkiasia Revolution of 1895

Following summarily executions and land seizures from Nevan nobles, Nevanmaa invaded Arkiasis in 1899 resulting in the Nevan-Arkiasian War. After 2 years, the war ended with no territorial changes. Despite no political or territorial changes, the war was seen as a victory for the new Republic as Arkiasis had successfully defended its borders from an invasion and helped legitimize the Republican government on the world stage. The outcome gave republican-oriented Arkiasians confidence and was used to stimulate a new sense of Arkiasian republicanism and nationalism which would dictate national politics for the next 30 years.

Early 20th Century

Following the Revolution, newly emphasized liberal economic policies led to rapid industrialization and economic growth in the 1900's and 1910's commonly refereed to as "the Republican Miracle". GDP and exports grew tenfold as Arkiasis became Esquarium's fastest growing economy.

Conneaut following a raid during the Second Great War.

Following the war Arkiasis enjoyed continued economic prosperity throughout the 1920's until the Great Depression which saw the collapse of the gold standard and the emergence of mass unemployment and economic turmoil. This resulted in the Arkiasis Government recognizing the need for state macroeconomic intervention to reduce unemployment as well as economic intervention to stabilize prices. During this era the Social Democratic Labour Party became the dominant Political party in Arkiasis who declared the need for substantial investment in economic infrastructure projects to respond to unemployment, and also declared support for a mixed economy with a combination of private initiative with social ownership. The Labour Party has had a profound impact on Arkiasis politics and is credited by many scholars of shaping the modern political and economic structure of Arkiasis. Arkiasis also saw the rise of various left and right wing political movements including the Democratic socialist "Socialist Party", the revolutionary Socialist "Worker's Party", the Marxism–Leninist "Communist Party", and the Fascist "National Unity Party". In 1935, a clash between Socialist, Communist, and Fascist groups in the streets of Elendel called the "Battle of Constitution Street" is regarded as the pinnacle of political extremism in Arkiasis. However, most revolutionary political movements died out as the focus of the nation turned to the Second Great War and the Arkiasis economy began to recover from the Great Depression in the late 1930's.

Starting in 1936 during the Second Great War Arkiasian cities sustained heavy damage during a period of sustained strategic bombing on multiple Arkiasian cities called "The Raids". The Raids caused extensive destruction to the country's cities killing 217,000 civilians. The most heavily damaged cities were Conneaut and Aspatria.

Modern times

Following the Second Great War Arkiasis enjoyed economic prosperity as unemployment fell below 1% and the Arkiasis manufacturing sector prospered including the automotive, shipbuilding, and aircraft manufacturing industries. The discovery of oil off the Northern coast of Arkiasis in the 1960's helped propel Arkiais into one of the world's strongest and robust economies which resulted in record levels of immigration. However, Arkiasis soon experienced a period of economic stagnation in the 1970's, couple with high unemployment and high inflation referred to as the Lost Decade. The Recession of 1980 had severe effects on the Arkiasian economy as the Aspatria Republic Bank and Asgard Bank both failed within a year, the third and fifth largest banks at the time. The 1982 Federal Election saw a major landslide victory for the Liberal Party who subsequently ushered in a series of neoliberal reforms which saw large scale privatization, economic austerity and a reduction of taxes. Arkiasis exited recession by the end of of 1982, unemployment rates however remained above 8% until 1985 and the economy did not return to pre-recession levels until 1986.

{{In 2015, the province of Vesperia narrowly voted against secession from Arkiasis.}}

Geography

A pack of grey wolves in the mountain ranges of Storberg.

Climate

Arkiasis' climate is heavily influenced by its northern location along with the powerful, warm, and swift Central Stream ocean current from the Central Ocean.

The southern & eastern coastlines of the country have a temperate oceanic climate (Köppen climate classification Cfb) with strong maritime influences. Winters are moderately mild, usually with light frosts at night and thawing conditions during the day; summers are usually dry and warm. Precipitation is generally often plentiful the winter and spring months with the summer and autumn months being very dry. Average temperatures in the coastal areas range from 13.3 °C to 25.3 °C in July, the warmest month, and from 1.9 °C to 6.7 °C in January, the coldest month.

The Northern coastlines of the country have a Humid Continental Climate (Köppen climate classification Dfb) with mild summers and cold snowy winters influenced by polar air currents from the arctic. And the continental interior of the nation has a semi-arid, continental climate (wikipedia:Köppen climate classification BSk) characterized by distinct seasons and very little precipitation throughout the year due to the Cascade mountain ranges resulting in a rain shadow.

Biodiversity

The total number of species include 18,000 species of insects (probably 5,000 more species yet to be described), 22,000 species of algae, 2,400 species of lichen, 1,550 species of mosses, 3,100 species of vascular plants, up to 8,000 species of fungi, 650 species of birds (300 species nesting in Arkiasis), 115 species of mammals, 55 fresh-water species of fish, 310 salt-water species of fish, 1,900 species of fresh-water invertebrates, and 4,500 species of salt-water invertebrates.

Administrative Divisions

Provinces of Arkiasis

Arkiasis is subdivided into 12 Provinces, with one of these provinces (Vesperia) having a special autonomous status that enables them to enact legislation on some of their local matters. The country is further divided into 56 districts, 512 counties and 13,100 municipalities. There is also one administrative territory (Elendel) and one Autonomous City (Aspatria) who are granted additional administrative powers.

Provinces

Flag Province Capital Largest city Area
(km²)
Population 2010 Census Density
(per km²)
SymphoniaProvincialFlag.png Aberdeen Concordia Exeter 12,308 5,987,366 714
AuroraFlag.png Aurora Relin Relin 57,452 1,296,129 65
RainierFlag.png Donyatt Ulcombe Ulcombe 26,771 3,937,094 212
FlagofShiprock.png Easton Selston Selston 53,067 9,209,130 198
FirelandsProvincialFlag.png Eldmark Lynham Lynham 91,636 898,733 28
Flag of Yorkshire.svg Greater Aspatria Aspatria Aspatria 2,567 7,528,173 3,923
Flag of Tornedalians (2007).svg Hartel Vierte Hydevatten 40,574 4,534,595 154
SuperiorFlag.png Storberg Noryln Noryln 79,999 2,851,159 41
TidewaterFlag.png Tidvand Vremsby Vremsby 34,238 5,011,830 211
AberdeenFlag.png Vergetend Hodlinby Hodlinby 41,732 2,054,847 71
VesperiaProvinceFlag.png Vesperia Ålstad Ålstad 130,099 6,080,212 135
NewArcadiaFlag.png Welborne Conneaut Conneaut 52,705 10,860,531 238
Total 623,148 60,249,798 146

Administrative Territory

Arms Administrative Territory Capital Area
(km²)
Population 2010 Census Density
(per km²)
Armoiries de Vervoz 3.svg Federal Capital District Elendel 44 468,693 15,371

Autonomous City

Arms Autonomous City Capital Area
(km²)
Population 2010 Census Density
(per km²)
COA family sv Algotssönernas ätt.svg Aspatria City 90 1,587,291 28,656

Politics

See also: Politics of Arkiasis, Elections in Arkiasis, List of political parties in Arkiasis

Parliament of Arkiasis in Elendel
Arkiasis is a Federal, Parliamentary, Constitutional, representative democratic Republic. The Arkiasis government operates under the framework of the current Constitution of Arkiasis which was created in 1970. Amendments generally require a two-thirds majority of both chambers of parliament; the fundamental principles of the constitution, as expressed in the articles guaranteeing human dignity, the separation of powers, the federal structure, and the rule of law are valid in perpetuity.

The Prime Minister is the Head of government and is the highest official of government. They are elected as the leader of a party whose members form a plurality in Parliament. The Prime Minister is invested with and exercises executive powers in Government.

The President is the head of state and the second highest official of the government. They are elected by the Parliamentary Convention (a meeting between both chambers of Parliament generally held after a federal election) and are invested primarily with representative responsibilities and powers and are also the Speaker of the House of Representatives. The President then appoints the Vice President, the third highest official and the Speaker of the Senate.

Federal legislative power is vested in the parliament consisting of the House of Representatives and the Arkiasis Senate, which together form the legislative body. The House of Representatives is elected through a mixed-member proportional representation system where 325 members are elected via first-fast-the-post system comprising of electoral districts, and another 325 members are voted in a nationwide party list system where political parties are then proportionally allocated seats. The number of seats in the House of Representative are adjusted every 10 years to account for population growth. The 200 seat Arkiasis Senate is elected through a single transferable vote system consisting of 50 electoral districts with 4 representatives each.

Since 1970 the party system has been dominated by the Progressive Party, Labour Party, Liberal Party and Independence Party. Currently the House of Representatives has members from 15 parties and the Senate has members from 7 parties.

Law

The Arkiasian law system was outlined in the 1804 Unification Act and combined the Arkiasisian common law system with the Vesperian civil law system to form a Bijuridical law system where law is both derived from written statutes and the precedents of earlier judges. Elements of the Arkiasis system include an inquisitional system, lay judges and bench trials, typical of civil law jurisdictions, as well as common law principals, such as precedent and statutory interpretation. The Constitution of Arkaisis is the supreme law of the country. The Arkiasis Bill of Civil and Political Rights guarantees basic rights and freedoms that cannot be over-ridden by any government.

The Federal Constitutional Court is the highest Court and the final arbiter in Arkasis. It is responsible for the interpretation and the enforcement of the Constitution of Arkiasis and has power to strike down Acts of Parliament that violate the constitution.

Arkasis has a long tradition of social tolerance. This tradition of tolerance influences Arkiasis' criminal justice policies on recreational drugs, prostitution, LGBT rights, nudity, euthanasia, and abortion, which are among the most liberal and progressive in the world. In Arkiasis, Social Conservatism is not as pronounced as in other nations with Right-wing parties tending to focus more on fiscal and economic reform than social morality.

Branches of the Arkiasian Armed Forces
G36 LT.jpg
Ground Command
Soldier with a G36
ANV Karma.jpg
Naval Command
ANV Independence
1025448 A Swedish JAS-39 Gripen returns to the play areas of the Arctic Challenge exercise Sept. 24, 2013.jpg
Air Command
Haastrup JAS 49 Rødlossen

Foreign Relations & Military

Arkiasis is a member of the Organisation of Esquarian Nations, the Esquarian Community, the Northern Sea Defense Organization, the Nordanian League, the World Assembly, the International Freedom Alliance and other smaller regional and global organisations. Recently Arkiasis has moved away from its noninterventionist foreign policy in favour of a policy based around humanitarian intervention. The Arkiasian Armed Forces (AAF) is the primary voluntary military defence force of Arkiasis. The AAF consists of 270,000 active duty and 285,000 reserve personnel, with a total strength of 555,000. The AAF consists of 3 branches: the Ground Command, the Naval Command, and the Air Command. The Prime Minister is the commander-in-chief of the AAF. The budget of Arkiasis' military was 68.115 billion NSD (1.5% of GDP) in 2013 and is expected to rise to 100 billion NSD (2.2% of GDP) in 2016. Arkiasis also plans to enlist 100,000 more active and reserve military personnel by 2020.

Arkiasis is one of the leading contributors to foreign aid and humanitarian missions in Esquarium with the Arkiasian Armed Forces regularly participating in humanitarian missions. Arkiasis is also one of the largest donors of developmental aid in Esquarium contributing 27.7 billion NSD (0.61% of GDP) in 2013 to some of the most impoverished and war-torn nations in Esquarium. Arkiasis' official statement regarding aid is to "develop infrastructure, increase access to health care and education, and implement appropriate economic policies with consolidation towards the rule of justice, human rights and democracy".

Demographics


Historical population
YearPop.±%
1900 30,951,679—    
1910 33,475,028+8.2%
1920 36,563,053+9.2%
1930 39,226,825+7.3%
1940 41,475,071+5.7%
1950 44,252,637+6.7%
1960 47,312,501+6.9%
1970 52,614,920+11.2%
1980 54,562,396+3.7%
1990 57,110,367+4.7%
2000 59,875,224+4.8%
2010 62,305,782+4.1%
2017 64,200,000+3.0%
Source: Arkiasis Census Bureau

Arkiasis is a heavily urbanized nation with a recorded population of 62,305,782 in 2010. Approximately 82.3% of the population lives in urban areas, and a further 56.3% live within 100km of Aspatria, Conneaut and Ålstad. The main drivers of population growth in Arkiasis are immigration and, to a lesser extent, natural growth. Arkiasis is the most populous nation on the Nordanian Continent.

Arkiasis is often considered a multicultural nation with distinct regional identities combined with large scale immigration over the 20th century resulting in a multiethnic society. A law originating from the 1895 revolution and reaffirmed in the 1970 Arkiasian Constitution makes it illegal for the Arkiasian state to collect data on ethnicity and ancestry. The Constitution officially classifies an "Arkiasian" as a nationality and not as a specific ethnicity. Distinct traditional regional identities within Arkiasis include Vesperians, the Hartish, the Donnish and the Arkish people's among others.

Immigration

Arkiasis has a high per-capita immigration rate, driven by economic policy and family reunification. In 2007, a record 281,841 people immigrated to Arkiasis for an immigration rate of 3.1/1000 people. Arkiasis' immigration policy contributes heavily to population growth resulting in higher and faster population growth than other neighbouring countries whom generally enforce strict immigration policies. By 2010, Arkiasis had 11,615,913 immigrants which accounted for 12.3% of the total population. The Arkiasis government anticipated around 250,000 new permanent residents in 2013, a similar number of immigrants as in recent years. However, since 2008 immigration rates have dropped due to an economic recession. The number of new immigrants rose to 350,000 in 2015 fueled primarily by the large influx of refugees from Nautasia. New immigrants settle mostly in major urban areas such as Aspatria and Conneaut, and more recently in Noryln. Arkiasis also accepts a large number of refugees and accepted 21,374 refugees in 2013, with ~5,000 being Black Nevans from Nevanmaa. In 2015, Arkiasis accepted a record number of refugees with 142,496 accepted applications, with the vast majority being from Eastern Nautasian nations including Kraq and Irvadistan.

Education

Arkiasian Provinces are each individually responsible for education. The mandatory school age ranges from 5 years of age to 16 years of age. The Arkiasis education structure is defined by 7 years of Primary school from the ages of 5-12, and 4 years of Lower Secondary School from the ages 12-16. After graduation from Lower Secondary School students can choose to enroll in either a Gymnasium or a Vocational School depending on their skills and knowledge. Gymnasium helps prepare academic students for University while Vocational Schools teaches students the skills needed to perform a particular job. Both institutions are 3 year programs from the ages of 16 to 19. Despite upper secondary schools being voluntary, recent changes to society (ie. fewer job opportunities for the age group and a law requiring the government to offer secondary schooling in one form or another to everyone who submits an application) have made upper secondary schools often unavoidable in practise. Tertiary education in Arkiasis includes Universities and Polytechnic schools. Admission into post secondary institutions is based strictly on merit and is free of charge for all Arkiasis citizens and permanent residents. Arkiasis has 752 Universities, 11 of which are ranked in the top 100 globally. Arkiasis has an adult literacy rate of 99.9%. As of 2011, 93% of adults aged 25 to 64 have earned the equivalent of a Lower Secondary School Diploma, 58.1% have completed some form of Upper Secondary education (this number rises to 81.7% for adults aged 25-34) and 26.9% have a University degree.

Health

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The Arkiasis Health Service is Arkiasis' government health insurance provider.

Arkiasis has a publicly funded healthcare system administered on a federal level by the Arkiasis Health Service (AHS) which guarantees comprehensive health insurance to all citizens and permanent residents. The AHS was enacted in 1948 by the Parliament of Arkiasis and signed into law by President Andrew Bradley making it the 2nd oldest (after the Atlantican Health Service) and largest single-payer healthcare system in the world. Private Healthcare is legally limited to primarily cosmetic surgeries with the AHS being the sole Health Insurance provider in Arkiasis. Health care in Arkiasis in funded through general taxation and is available free at the point of use (above a certain level) with patients freely being able to select the physicians or facilities of their choice.

Arkiasis ranks highly in general health and has one of the lowest rates of obesity of any developed nation in the world. Arkiasis has a life expectancy of 82 years and an infant mortality rate of 3.63/1000 births. There are 3.16 physicians per 1000 people and 5.9 hospital beds per 1000 people. Health care constitutes 10.2% of the national GDP or $4,204.37 per capita. Healthcare costs have begun to steadily increase as the population of Arkiasis continues to age. According to a survey in 2009 despite liberal drug laws very few Arkiasians are drug users with only 7% of Arkiasians consuming tobacco products. The suicide rate in Arkiasis was 11.6/100,000 in 2011, an increase from a rate of 10.3 in 1990.

Religion in Arkiasis
Religion
Percentage
Christianity
  
50.4%
No religion
  
42.7%
Islam
  
1.9%
Txoism
  
1.4%
Judaism
  
1.1%
Other religions
  
2.5%

Religion

Freedom of Religion is a guaranteed right in Article 1, Section 3 of the Arkiasis Constitution which states "Everyone has the right to freedom of thought, conscience and religion; this right includes the freedom to practice or not practice any religion or belief, the freedom to identify and express publicly or privately with any religion or belief, the freedom to change his/her religion or belief, and freedom, either alone or in community with others and in public or private, to manifest his/her religion or belief in teaching, practice, worship and observance."

In recent years religious affiliation has substantially declined with Christianity in decline after having once been central and integral to Arkiasian culture and daily life, Arkiasis has become a post-Christian, secular state. Adherence to Christianity declined from 84% in 1980 to 77% in 1990, and further from 65% in 2000 to 50% in 2010. Separate surveys have stated that 30% of the population "do not believe there is any sort of spirit, God or life force", and 75% do not consider religion an important part of their daily life. A poll in 2009 indicated that only 7.6% of Arkiasians regularly attended religious services. Historically, the Lutheran Church of Vesperia has been the most influential and largest religious sect in Arkiasis. However, members of the Church were heavily persecuted and taxed during the Douglas Monarchy resulting in Catholicism taking over as the primary religion. In Modern day Arkiasis Catholicism constitutes 27% of the population while the Church of Vesperia makes up 15% of the population. Religion in Arkiasis is generally considered a personal matter which is not supposed to be propagated in public.

Economy

Automobile assembly at a VGW plant. Arkiasis maintains a large automotive industry.

See also: Economy of Arkiasis

Economic indicators
Nominal GDP 4.716 trillion (2014)
Real GDP growth 0.6% (YoY 2016)
0.2% (Q4 2016)
Credit Rating Wellington: AA Decrease (2016)
CPI inflation 0.2% (2015)
Labour Force 50.968 million (2013)
Unemployment 6.3% (January 2017)
Poverty 7.0% (2013)
Public debt (71.5%) $3.37 trillion (2013)
Average Gross Salary ₵7,630 / $4,578 monthly (2013)
Average Net Salary ₵4,430 / $2,658 monthly (2013)
Exchange Rate 1.00 ARC = 0.60 NSD (Q1 2016)

Arkiasis has a developed mixed economy, with a highly skilled and educated labour force, high standards of living, abundant natural resources and low levels of corruption.

Arkiasis' economy is an example of a mixed economy; a prosperous capitalist welfare state featuring a combination of free market activity, government regulation and state ownership in certain key sectors. Arkiasis maintains a large welfare state with high standards of living and low levels of poverty. Public health care is free (above a certain level), and parents have 32 weeks paid parental leave annually. 29.6% of Arkiasis' GDP comes from industry and manufacturing, 68.2% comes from the service sector and 2.2% from the agricultural sector. Despite being a service-orientated economy, Arkiasis maintains a large manufacturing sector defined by the large-scale production of automobiles, machinery, electrical equipment, chemicals, pharmaceuticals, aircraft and ships. Arkiasis has obtained one of the highest standards of living in the world in part due to its highly diverse economy.

Until the 1980s, many of Arkiasis' largest industry firms were nationalised; in recent years, however, privatisation has reduced state holdings to a level comparable to other western economies. Nevertheless, the state maintains large ownership positions in key industrial sectors, such as the strategic petroleum sector (ArkPetro), energy production (Energy One), national flag carrier (ArkiasiAir), national railway company (NRCA), and telecommunications provider (ArkTel). Through these big companies, the government controls approximately 20% of the stock values at the Aspatria Stock Exchange.

The TURN is a high speed rail network in Arkiasis.

Major Arkiasian companies includes Nordbank, Piedmont Bank, James Morgenn Chance and Juneau Bank (banking); Volor, VGW, Majestic, Valiant, Luxic and Durant (automotive); Bering (aerospace); Tyzer and Aldyll (pharmaceuticals).

The automotive industry in Arkiasis is regarded as one of the most competitive and innovative in Esquarium. With the manufacture of 8.6 million vehicles in 2014, Arkiasis was one of the Esquarium's largest producers and largest exporters of automobiles.

The country is richly endowed with natural resources including timber, fish, iron ore, coal, potash, salt, uranium, nickel, aluminum, steel, copper and natural gas. Despite its northern location Arkiasis is also a large agricultural producer. Arkiasis' principal agricultural products are potatoes, wheat, maize, barley, oats, sugar beets, rye, fruit, and cabbages. Within animal husbandry, it includes dairy and beef cattle, pigs, poultry and fur animals.

The global financial crisis of 2008 caused a major recession, which led to a significant rise in unemployment in Arkiasis. By October 2009, Arkiasis' national unemployment rate had reached 8.4 percent, with provincial unemployment rates varying from a low of 4.2 percent in Storberg to a high of 12.2 percent in Vesperia. The national GDP contracted by nearly 8% in 2008 and 2009 before returning to positive growth in 2010, however economic growth remains slow averaging at just 1.2% per year since 2010. Economic prospects worsened due to a recession in 2015 resulting in negative growth. In 2016, Arkiasis' credit rating was downgraded to AA as a result of slow economic growth. Arkiasis has a national debt of 88% as of 2015.

The A-series "Autoroutes" are known for their general lack of speed limit.

Infrastructure

With its position on the southeastern edge of Nordania, Arkiasis is commonly nicknamed the "Gateway to Nordania" and acts as a transportation hub for Nordania. Arkiasis' motorway system is characterized by the federal A-series "Autoroutes" and M-series "Motorways", with each province also maintaining their own highway designation. The A-series "Autoroutes" are known for their general lack of speed limit with 67% of the 13,500km network having no designated speed limit. Roads in Arkiasis are also known as some of the safest in Esquarium with 3.6 traffic fatalities per 100,000 inhabitants per year. The Trans-Urban Railway Network (TURN) is Arkiasis' primary high speed rail network which includes 4,600km of track operated by the National Railway Company of Arkiasis. NordaniaRail connects Arkiasis to the rest of Nordania with the Southern Line ending in Aspatria and the Northern Line ending in Ålstad.

The largest airports in Arkiasis are Aspatria Lima International Airport and Elendel International, both hubs of ArkiasiAir. While Cardinal Airlines, the 2nd largest airline, has hubs at Conneaut International and Ålstad International. Other major airports include Aspatria Monroe International, Ulcombe International, and Vremsby International.

Nuclear power constitutes 55% of Arkiasis' total energy output.

Energy

Nuclear Power is the most commonly used energy source in Arkiasis constituting nearly 55% of its total energy output. Hydroelectric power is the 2nd largest energy source at 19%, followed by natural gas at 8% and petroleum at 4%, with the remaining 14% coming from renewable energy sources. The Arkiasian government has stated that it is committed to phase out the use of fossil fuel energy sources by 2030. Arkiasis began decommissioning coal power plants in 2001, with the last coal plant being shut down on 31 December, 2010. In 2008, the Arkiasian government introduced a law which prohibited the construction of new fossil fuel thermal power generation plants.

Trade

Arkiasis is a net exporter of natural gas, chemicals, pharmaceuticals, machinery and equipment, automobiles, foodstuffs and agricultural products. Arkiasis is a net importer of textiles, rubber and plastic products, crude oil, consumer goods, computers and accessories and electrical equipment. Arkiasis has a highly globalized and trade orientated economy and trades with numerous countries across Esquarium. Arkiasis is apart of the Nordanian Free Trade Area along with Fjalland, Lydland, Lyonsland, Saexland, Vajorr and Vjaarland. Trade with NFTA nations make up 70% of Arkiasis' total global trade. Arkiasis has other Free Trade Agreements with Geadland, Britanno, Vyvland, Skvaeland and Ainin. Talks are ongoing regarding free trade agreements with Pavonistade, Namor, Freyhill, and Francilie.

The Arkiasis Space Operations Centre (ASOC) in Noryln.

Science and Technology

Research and development (R&D) efforts form an integral part of the Arkiasian economy. Scientific research in the country is supported by private sector industry, the network of Arkiasian universities and by scientific state-institutions and programs such as the Hedley Institute and the Kees Mohren Society. Combined, the public and the private sector in Arkiasis allocate over 3.2% of GDP towards research and development per year.

Arkiasis is one of the top contributors to the Nordanian Space Agency (NSA) and is home to the Arkiasis Space Operations Centre, which serves as the main mission control centre for the NSA.

Culture

A Vesperian dish made ​​from salmon, spinach and green lasagna and a salad

Arkiasis culture is often characterized as being "very progressive, diverse, and egalitarian". In stark contrast to traditionally Conservative and homogeneous neighbouring countries such as Vjaarland and Nevanmaa. The greatest sources of influence on Arkiasian culture have been Denmark, the Netherlands and England. Arkiasian Government policies – such as publicly funded health care; higher and more progressive taxation; outlawing capital punishment; strong efforts to eliminate poverty; an emphasis on cultural diversity; strict gun control; and most recently, legalizing same-sex marriage, cannabis and euthanasia – are social indicators of Arkiasis' political and cultural values.

The people of Arkiasis are often characterized as courteous, reserved, and mild-mannered. The cultural characteristics of Arkiasian's include a polite friendliness, an aversion to confrontation, a tendency toward understatement, a disinclination to make a fuss or stand out, a respect for personal space and privacy, emotional restraint, modesty, honesty, and self-deprecation.

Media

The freedom of the press and the right to free expression is guaranteed in the Constitution of Arkiasis. The Arkiasis Broadcasting Corporation (ABC) is the publicly funded radio, television and Internet broadcasting corporation, and is one of the oldest and largest broadcasters in the world. It operates numerous television and radio stations in Arkiasis and abroad. There are a wide range of both non-political and partisan papers in Arkiasis, with a vast majority of them considered some of the more quality international publications. Several prominent papers include The Premier, The Daily Globe, The Daily Post, The Examiner, the Aspatria Times, the Elendel Gazette among others.

The Arkiasis Men's Ice Hockey Team at the 2014 Esquarium Winter Games

Sport

Sport and recreational activities are very popular in Arkaisis, and contribute heavily to Arkiasis' overall low rates of obesity. Over half of the population actively participates in organized sporting activities. The most popular recreational activity in Arkiasis is swimming which due to short summers results in a large number of indoor and heated outdoor pools. Physical education is mandatory in every year of compulsory schooling and children are encouraged to join after-school and summer sport programs. Ice hockey and association football are usually considered the two most popular spectator sports in Arkiasis.

The Arkiasis national ice hockey team has enjoyed success at the Esquarium World Ice hockey Tournament winning 14 men's medals including 4 gold in 1936, 1980, 2006 and 2014. The women's team has won 12 medals including 4 gold in 1976, 1982, 1996 and 2004. Arkiasis has had many famous hockey stars like Brent Resnick, Arne Matthiasen, Kristoffer Alffsen, Niklas Jakobsen, Elias Bullens, Jacob Johanssen, Joseph Campbell, Paul Simenon and Lucas Swanner among others. The top professional hockey league is the Arkiasis Elite League which has 24 teams, the reining champion is Patalk Riddere IF.

The Arkiasis national football team has qualified for the Coupe d'Esquarium and the Esquarian Football Classic numerous times and has enjoyed moderate success. In the spring 2016 Coupe d'Esquarium Arkiasis achieved their best result and advanced to the Finals and were the runners-up in the tournament. On the international stage Arkiasis is commonly nicknamed "The Wolves" after the wolf in the Arkiasis Coat of Arms which commonly appears on its uniforms. The top football league in Arkiasis is the Arkiasis Super League which has 20 teams, the reining champion is Reading FC.

Rugby League and Rugby Union are both popular in Arkiasis with Rugby League Arkiasis being the premier rugby league association, while the Rugby Union Arkiasis being the premier rugby union association. Historically, Rugby League was popular among working class blue collar workers while Rugby Union was popular among middle class white collar workers. The divide is still seen today with the subject being of immense debate between fans of both sports.

Emma Thorsen and Amanda Komen of Rise Within

Other popular winter sports include skiing, snowboarding and mountaineering which due to the massive Cascade Mountain Range results in the country being particularly suited for such activities. Popular summer sports include cycling, volleyball, tennis, golf, mountain biking, and hiking among others. As a country with a generally cool climate, Arkiasis has enjoyed greater success at the Winter Olympics than at the Summer Olympics. Motorsports are also popular with the Arkiasis Grand Prix being held at the Arkiasis International Circuit just outside of Bristol since 2006.

Music

Contemporary Arkiasian music is dominated by various of genres of rock and electronic music. Several popular artists include The Metros (indie rock), Dragonwing and Engen (heavy metal), Rise Within (symphonic metal), Kapaun (industrial metal), and others.

Since the 1990s Arkiasian electronic dance music (EDM) has conquered Esquarium in many forms, from trance, techno, drum and bass, and jumpstyle. Some of Esquairum's best electronic music DJs hail from Arkiasis, including Nokane, Quebel, Samxque, Therhon, Daniel Ingram; who of which have been ranked as the best in the world by DJ Mag Top 100 DJs.

Holidays

The following are all official federally recognized holidays. All public holidays are established by acts of Parliament as a day of rest. For all holidays which are recognized as a day of rest, if the date falls on a Saturday then the preceding Friday will be a holiday. Likewise, if the holiday rests on a Sunday the proceeding Monday will be a holiday. Any worker's who remain working on these days are by law entitled to holiday pay compensation (2.5x their normal hourly wage) and an extra day off on another day.

Date Name Day off Notes
1 January New Year's Day Yes
3 February St. Ansgar's Day Yes Feast of Saint Ansgar, patron saint of Arkiasis.
10 March Treaty Day No Signifies the signing of the Treaty of Strandhavn which formally ended the Continental War.
variable Good Friday Yes
Easter Sunday Yes
Easter Monday Yes
25 April Armed Forces Day No
1 May Labour Day Yes
8 June Republic Day Yes The national day of Arkiasis. Celebrates the establishment of the Arkiasian Constitution and the Republic of Arkiasis in 1895.
24 June Midsummer Yes
1st Monday of August Summer Bank Holiday Yes
30 September Harvest Festival Yes Colloquially known as "HarFest", the 2 week beer festival and travelling funfair held annually in late September/early October.
1 November All Saint's Day No
25 December Christmas Day Yes
26 December St. Stephen's Day Yes