Lesotho Population 2017

2,234,029

Lesotho, officially the Kingdom of Lesotho, is a small landlocked country surrounded by South Africa. The estimated 2017 population of Lesotho is 2.23 million, which ranks 145th in the world.

Lesotho is just 30,000 square kilometers in space and has an estimated population of 2.23 million. This compares to the 2004 census population of 2.03 million. Lesotho has a population density of 68 people per square kilometer (162/sq mi), or 138th in the world. Population density is lowest in the highlands. The capital and largest city is Maseru,

Lesotho Demographics

About 99.7% of Lesotho's population identifies as Basotho, a Bantu-speaking people. There are several subgroups of the Basotho, including the Batloung (Tlou), Bakuena (Kuena), Baphuthi (Phuti), Bataung (Tau), Batsoeneng (Tsoene), Matebele and Bafokeng. The main language is Sesotho, although English is the other official language.

About 90% of the population is Christian. Protestants make up 45% of the population, with Roman Catholics accounting for 45%. Muslims, Hindus, Baha'i, and indigenous religions account for the remaining 10%.

Lesotho has one of the highest literacy rates in Africa with about 85% of the adult population being literate, partly because Lesotho spends 12% of its GDP on education. Unlike most countries, Lesotho has a higher female literacy rate than male literacy rate.

About 25% of the population lives in urban areas while the majority live in rural areas. The urbanization rate of Lesotho is 3.5% per year, however. Nearly 40% of the population lives below the international poverty line of $1.25 USD per day.

Lesotho Population in 2018Source: OER Africa

Population Data via United Nations WPP (2015 Revision, Medium Variant)

Lesotho Population Growth

Lesotho has a high infant mortality rate of 8.3% and a very high HIV/AIDS rate. The HIV prevalence is around 24%, which is one of the highest in the world. Around half of women under 40 have HIV in urban areas, and the country has a life expectancy of just 42 years old.

About Lesotho

Official NameKingdom of Lesotho
Languages SpokenSotho, English
BordersZAF
Is LandlockedYes
Latitude/Longitude-29.528.5
Currencies UsedLSLZAR

Lesotho Population Density

Name Population
Maseru118,355
Mafeteng57,059
Leribe47,675
Maputsoe32,117
Mohale's Hoek28,310
Qacha's Nek25,573
Quthing24,130
Butha-Buthe16,330
Nako13,146
Mokhotlong8,809
Thaba-Tseka5,423
Teyateyaneng5,115

Lesotho Population Clock

What is the population of Lesotho (as of 11/15/2017)?2,234,029
Last UN Estimate (July 1, 2017)2,233,339
Births Per Day33
Deaths Per Day17
Net Migrations Per Day -11
Net Change Per Day 5
Population Change Since January 1st1,595

Lesotho Population Indicators

IndicatorValue
Crude Birth Rate 27.853 births/thousand
Crude Death Rate 14.582 deaths/thousand
Crude Net Migration Rate -1.821 people/thousand
Life Expectancy (Both Sexes) 50.453 years
Male Life Expectancy 50.335 years
Female Life Expectancy 50.331 years
Total Fertility Rate 3.043 children/woman
Net Reproduction Rate 1.229 surviving daughters/woman
Sex Ratio At Birth 1.03 males per female
Infant Mortality Rate 50.771 deaths/1,000 live births
Under Five Mortality 67.728 deaths/thousand
Mean Age at Childbearing 27.531 years
Rate of Natural Increase 12.99
Death Before 40 Probability (Total) 34.281%
Death Before 40 Probability (Male) 32.323%
Death Before 40 Probability (Female) 36.365%
Death Before 60 Probability (Total) 62.934%
Death Before 60 Probability (Male) 62.34%
Death Before 60 Probability (Female) 63.929%
Median Age (Total) 24 years
Median Age (Female) 24 years
Median Age (Male) 24 years

Lesotho Population History

Year Population % Male % Female Density (km²) Growth Rate
20172,233,33948.55%51.45%741.34%
20152,174,64548.50%51.50%721.28%
20102,040,55148.44%51.56%670.92%
20051,949,54348.33%51.67%640.85%
20001,868,69948.12%51.88%621.19%
19951,761,35948.70%51.30%581.89%
19901,603,93848.30%51.70%531.73%
19851,472,19247.19%52.82%482.36%
19801,310,11846.77%53.23%432.63%
19751,150,63546.16%53.84%382.18%
19701,033,05046.22%53.78%342.04%
1965933,65546.07%53.93%311.86%
1960851,59146.53%53.47%281.57%
1955787,80646.87%53.13%261.43%
1950733,94546.90%53.10%240.00%

Lesotho Population Projections

Year Population % Male % Female Density (km²) Growth Rate
20202,322,21748.65%51.35%770.00%
20252,466,33048.83%51.17%811.21%
20302,607,95749.00%50.99%861.12%
20352,752,56149.18%50.82%911.09%
20402,902,19749.33%50.67%961.06%
20453,054,50249.43%50.57%1011.03%
20503,203,47049.48%50.52%1060.96%
20553,343,81749.48%50.52%1100.86%
20603,469,80649.44%50.56%1140.74%
20653,578,71849.39%50.61%1180.62%
20703,670,73149.33%50.67%1210.51%
20753,746,38249.28%50.72%1230.41%
20803,806,34949.23%50.77%1250.32%
20853,851,47449.19%50.81%1270.24%
20903,882,49549.16%50.84%1280.16%
20953,900,15849.13%50.87%1280.09%
Data Sources
  1. World Population Prospects (2017 Revision) - United Nations population estimates and projections.
  2. GeoNames Gazetteer