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The castle was bought by the Count of Ardennes in 963 AD and a town grew around it. From 1395 members of the House of Luxembourg reigned as Holy Roman Emperors.
In 1437, with no heir, the powerful territory was sold to a series of owners that included Bourbons, Habsburgs, Hohenzollerns, and the French state. The castle was progressively strengthened.
In 1815 after Napoleon, it became a Grand Duchy within the German Confederation; a province of the Netherlands defended by Prussian troops. Independence was granted in 1839 although half was ceded to Belgium.
It joined the German Customs Union and developed rapidly with industry and transport links. In 1867 Prussia's troops were finally withdrawn leaving an independent and neutral state. However, in both World Wars 1 and 2, Germany occupied it to use its railway links.
Its neutral status ceased in 1949 when it became a founding member of NATO. Services, especially banking and finance, now account for the majority of economic output but it has very high external debt.
The northern third of Luxembourg is known as the Oesling and forms part of the Ardennes mountains. The highest point is the Kneiff, at 560m. The southern two-thirds is called the Gutland, This area comprises a sandstone plateau, forested hills and the Moselle valley along the southeastern border.
One well was drilled within its borders in 1960 targeted at thin sediments of the Paris Basin which overlap the country in the south. However, the land-locked country has no identified indigenous oil or gas resources and Globalshift believes it is unlikely to achieve any production in the future.
Map and National Flag
Street in town
Land area (sq kms)
Oil prod (000s b/d)
Gas prod (bcm/yr)
Oil cons (000s b/d)
Gas cons (bcm/yr)
Luxembourg is a parliamentary democracy headed by a constitutional monarch (Grand Duke). It is the world's only remaining Grand Duchy.
Executive power is exercised by the Grand Duke and the cabinet. Legislative power is vested in a unicameral, 60-member Chamber of Deputies elected to 5-year terms.
There is no government department specifically responsible for oil and gas resources.
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