Municipality partnerships

Jekabpils – Averøy partnership

About the partnership:

There has been a long tradition for collaboration between Jekabpils in Latvia and Averøy in Norway. An agreement was signed July 12th 1997 by Janis Lacis from Jekabpils Region Council and Leif Helge Kongshaug from Averøy Municipality. Many meetings and trips followed, forming a strong friendship between Jekabpils and Averøy.

In 2009, a regional reform in Lativa changed the structure of the local councils, and Jekabpils Region Council was replaced by Jekabpils County Municipality. February 21st, 2011, a new collaboration agreement came to existence, at Håholmen in Averøy. It was signed by the chairman for Jekabpils County Municipality, Edvins Menkis, and Jarle Haga, the chairman for Averøy Municipality.

(Norwegian version)

Vennskapssamarbeidet mellom Jekabpils i Latvia og Averøy i Norge har en lang og rik tradisjon. Den første avtalen ble signert 12. juli 1997 av Janis Lacis fra Jekabpils regionråd og Leif Helge Konshaug, daværende ordfører i Averøy kommune. Det har vært mange reiser og møter i etterkant, noe som har ført til et sterkt vennskap mellom Jekabpils og Averøy.

I 2009 ble det gjennomført en reform innen det regionale systemet i Latvia, og Jekabpils regionråd ble omdannet til Jekabpils fylkeskommune. 21. februar 2011 ble en ny avtale etablert, på et møte på Håholmen i Averøy. Samarbeidsavtalen ble signert av ordfører for Jekabpils fylkeskommune, Edvins Menkis, og Jarle Haga, ordfører for Averøy kommune.

Collaboration agreement

between Jekabpils County Municipality in Latvia and Averøy Municipality in Norway.

The purpose of this agreement is to promote cultural exchange, entrepreneurship, contacts among persons, organisations and establishments and sharing ideas and experience between Jekabpils County Municipality in

Latvia and Averøy Municipality in Norway.

Through political support by both partners, collaboration will be developed. At least every second year a common action plan will be developed by both partners.

When both partners agree, other partners could be involved in the partnership.

The agreement is signed on friendship basis, February 21st 2011.

About Jekabpils County Municipality

Jekabpils County Municipality is located in the Southeast part of Latvia, part of it’s territory lies on the bank of the river Daugava (length, 63 km). The territory is rich of natural recourses: forests, meadows, lakes, wild animals, gravel pits, fields.

Jekabpils County Municipality consists of 7 former small municipalities: Kalna, Leimani, Zasa, Rubeni, Dunava, Dignaja and Abeli. The former municipalities have joined together combining a wide cultural diversity within the new municipality. There are 6 educational establishments (5 primary schools, 1 secondary school), 6 recreational (cultural) centers, 11 libraries, 1 department of Art school, 2 local museums and a department of the state museum called Rainis Museum.

Residents and guests appreciate local traditions and actively take part in events organised by the culture centers. Educational and traditional events, music festivals, amateur drama group festivals, The “River Daugava Festival”, and children/ youth festivals are examples of typical events. Schools provide formal education, but culture centers and libraries are establishments taking an active role in informal education where children and adults are involved together.

In the municipality a high level of importance is given to further development within education and culture. The community is a rich source of history and traditions, achievements and attractions. High unemployment, lack of investments and young people moving to big cities are some of the main challenges for the local government. Rubene Culture Centre is an association which works to ensure a close network between the cultural establishments in the vast region.

Strengthening the links between local political level, potential or existent entrepreneurs and social groups within the territory is also one of the priorities the of authority.

There are 357 farms, 47 entrepreneurs, 21 NGOs within the municipality.

The main fields for which Jekabpils County Municipality seeks collaboration:

– Promotion of people’s initiatives

– The role of the local government in promotion of entrepreneurship

– Education and culture

– Environment

– Partnership in projects

Current/ planned projects


Youth in Action: “Once Upon a Time” youth exchange. An intercultural exchange supported by the Youth in Action programme, focusing on the sharing of heritage and myths through a method in creative writing. Youths from Zasa Secondary School in Latvia, together with youths from Averøy, Ireland and Spain.


“Learning from Nordic countries – best practices and experience sharing to raise administrative capacity of municipality”.

Averøy municipality will host participants of mobilities from Jekabpils municipality in the period May 27th – May 30th 2013.


Youth in Action exchange project in Jekabpils under evaluation.


Contact person for Jekabpils County Municipality:

Gunta Dimitrijeva

+371 266 25 480


Contact person for Averøy Municipality:

Trond L. Onarheim

+47 916 42 606