Developed Countries List 2020

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A developed country is a sovereign state with a developed economy and technologically advanced infrastructure compared to other nations. Several factors determine whether or not a country is developed, such as the Human Development Index, political stability, gross domestic product (GDP), industrialization, and freedom. Countries that are not quite yet developed are called developing countries.

The Human Development Index was developed by the United Nations to measure human development in a country. HDI is quantified by looking at a country's human development, such as education, health, and life expectancy. HDI is set on a scale from 0 to 1, and most developed countries have a score above .80. HDI can be used to determine the best countries to live in, as those who are more developed typically have a higher quality of life.

Developed countries have post-industrial economies with service sectors contributing more to the nation than the industrial sector. Because there are so many factors to consider, defining what countries are developed can be a challenge.

While Mexico is not considered a developed country based on its HDI rankings, some organizations believe it is. Mexico has a .767 HDI ranking. While the country is plagued by poverty, lack of quality health care, and limited access to clean water, it is considered one of the world's most advanced developing countries.

According to the UN, Turkey, a member of the EU, OECD, and G-20, has an HDI of .807, making it a developed country. The CIA World Factbook also classifieds Turkey as developed, while some organizations such as Dow Jones and FTSE classify Turkey as developing. This is likely because Turkey has a slightly high infant mortality rate for developed countries of 12 per 1,000, and the country's life expectancy is 75. The World Bank classifies Turkey as an upper-middle income country in terms of its per capita GDP.

Russia is not currently classified as a developed country, although the UN gave it an HDI of .824 in 2018. While Russia was once a world superpower, its economy collapsed after the fall of the Soviet Union, and poverty became widespread, resulting in low living standards. Russia's HDI ranking is .79, just below the threshold.

Chile is the only country in Latin America that is recognized as a developed country. Chile has an HDI ranking of .847. While Chile's GDP, life expectancy and infant mortality rate are not at the levels of other developed countries, they are still qualifying factors. The massive improvements in the country's economy and quality within a short period are promising for Chile's future.

According to its HDI ranking, Singapore is considered a developed country and has the ninth highest HDI ranking of .93. However, according to the World Trade Organization (WTO), Singapore is regarded as a developing country, despite having one of the world's most competitive economies and is a high-income country.

With an HDI ranking of 0.915, Japan is a developed country. Japan has an average life expectancy of 83.9 years, one of the highest globally, and the third-largest economy globally by nominal GDP and the fourth-largest by purchasing power parity (PPP). Japan also has a high life expectancy of 83.98.

While some organizations disagree, South Korea is considered to be a developed country. South Korea's HDI is .89, and the country has a strong per capita GDP, high life expectancy, and has widespread access to health care and higher education.

The United Nations Development Report 2019 Statistical Update ranks each country in the world based on its HDI ranking. The following list is the top 10 countries on that list:

  1. Norway
  2. Switzerland
  3. Ireland
  4. Germany
  5. Hong Kong, China
  6. Australia
  7. Iceland
  8. Sweden
  9. Singapore
  10. The Netherlands

1. Norway

According to the UN Development Report, Norway is the most developed nation in the world. Norway has an HDI of 0.954, making it a "very high development" country. Norway has a high life expectancy of 82.3 years. Norway is also one of the world's wealthiest nations, with an average gross salary of $5,166 per month per person. Additionally, the per capita GDP is expected to hit US$93,000 by the end of 2020. Norway's economy is boosted by its petroleum and natural gas exports, being the third-largest exporter of natural gas in the world. Additionally, most of Norway's workers are employed in the services sector instead of agriculture or manufacturing. The government controls the economy through regulation, and enterprises are state-owned and funded.

2. Switzerland

The second most-developed country in the world is Switzerland, with an HDI of .0946. Switzerland's life expectancy is even higher than Norway's at 83.6 years. Additionally, Switzerland has one of the most competitive economies in the world, with a highly developed service sector and the second-highest GDP per capita in the world of US$82,504.32 (December 2018). According to a report from KPMG, Switzerland scored highly for infrastructure, institutions, and openness and had the overall strongest growth outlook.

3. Ireland

With an HDI of 0.942, Ireland is the third-most developed country. Ireland moved up in the UN's rankings faster than any other country in the last five years. Life expectancy for women is 83.6 years and for men is 79.7 years. Additionally, the average number of years spent in schooling is 18.8 years, higher than in Norway and Switzerland. Ireland's economy is outperforming most other European countries with impressive, almost-full employment and rising wages. In recent years, Ireland has seen an 8% decrease in income inequality and has been doing well to improve gender equality. The country's GDP per capita is also impressive at US$80,264.

4. Germany

Germany ranks fourth for the most developed countries. Germany's HDI is 0.939, tied with Hong Kong. Germany's high HDI is driven by its high quality of life and a strong economy, which is the strongest in Europe and the fourth-largest in the world. In terms of quality of life, German residents have universal health care coverage. Germany is known for exporting high-quality automobiles, pharmaceuticals, electronics, and machinery from companies such as Volkswagen, Siemens AG, and Bayer AG.

5. Hong Kong, China

Hong Kong is also the fourth-most developed country globally, with the same HDI as Germany of 0.939. The Hong Kong Special Administrative Region (SAR) is an inalienable part of the People's Republic of China, meaning that Hong Kong exercises a high degree of autonomy and has executive, legislative, and independent judicial power. While Hong Kong is technically part of China, a developing country, Hong Kong's economy is a highly developed, free-market economy. Hong Kong's economy is an international financial hub and business center characterized by free trade, less government interference, and low tax rates. Hong Kong has a life expectancy of 84.7 years, the highest of any country analyzed. In December 2019, Hong Kong's per capita GDP was US$48,760.89.

6. Australia

Australia's HDI is 0.938, making it the sixth-most developed country in the world. Australia's life expectancy at birth is 83.3 years, and the infant mortality rate is 3 per 1,000 births, one of the lowest infant mortality rates in the world. Australia also boasts high literacy rates and quality healthcare for most of its citizens. When it comes to the economy, Australia has a GDP of A$1.89 trillion (US$1.14 trillion). The economy is dominated by the service sector, comprising about 63% of its GDP and employing about 79% of its workforce. Australia is also part of the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC), G20, the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECC), and the World Trade Organization (WTO).

7. Iceland

Iceland is tied with Australia as the sixth-most developed country with an HDI of 0.938. Like other Nordic countries, Iceland has a mixed economy that is mainly well developed and capitalist and supports a welfare state, providing universal health care and tertiary education for its citizens. Iceland stands out among other countries for its commitment to support underdeveloped countries and using its expertise in renewable energy, land restoration, and gender equality for aid programs. Additionally, Iceland also ranked on the Global Peace Index for 2019 as the most peaceful and safest country globally. Iceland ranks high for its economy, social stability, and equality among its people.

8. Sweden

With an HDI of 0.937, Sweden is the eighth-most developed country in the world. The average Swede has a life expectancy of 82.7 years and about 18.8 years of schooling. Sweden is known for its high quality of life, with low unemployment and poverty rates and free access to health care for all of its citizens. Sweden's economy is diverse and highly competitive that is export-oriented and typically maintains a trade surplus. Its main exports are vehicles and machines, pharmaceuticals, electronics, and minerals. Sweden is also one of the easiest countries to trade and do business with.

9. Singapore

Singapore is the ninth-most developed nation in the world and also one of the most peaceful. Singapore has a life expectancy of 83.5 years and 16.3 years of expected schooling. Singapore is high-income and one of the world's most competitive economies in the world when it comes to the economy. The city-state has one of the world's highest GDP growth rate at 7.7% since gaining independence from Malaysia in 1965. Singapore experienced rapid industrialization in the 1960s, launching its development trajectory. Today, service and manufacturing are the two main sectors of Singapore's strong economy.

10. Netherlands

The Netherlands finishes the top ten most developed countries list with an HDI of 0.933. Despite having the 65th-largest population in the world of about 17 million, the Netherlands still has the 17th-highest GDP. Additionally, the Netherlands is the eighth-largest exporter of goods in the world. Quality of life in the Netherlands is very high, with high rankings for education and healthy work-life balance and low unemployment rates. The Netherlands has a life expectancy of 82.1 years and an expected 18 years of schooling for its citizens.

Developed Countries List 2020

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Developed Countries List 2020

Country Human Development Index Population 2020
Norway0.9535,421,241
Switzerland0.9448,654,622
Australia0.93925,499,884
Ireland0.9384,937,786
Germany0.93683,783,942
Iceland0.935341,243
Hong Kong0.9337,496,981
Sweden0.93310,099,265
Singapore0.9325,850,342
Netherlands0.93117,134,872
Denmark0.9295,792,202
Canada0.92637,742,154
United States0.924331,002,651
United Kingdom0.92267,886,011
Finland0.925,540,720
New Zealand0.9174,822,233
Liechtenstein0.91638,128
Belgium0.91611,589,623
Japan0.909126,476,461
Austria0.9089,006,398
Luxembourg0.904625,978
Israel0.9038,655,535
South Korea0.90351,269,185
France0.90165,273,511
Slovenia0.8962,078,938
Spain0.89146,754,778
Czech Republic0.88810,708,981
Italy0.8860,461,826
Malta0.878441,543
Estonia0.8711,326,535
Greece0.8710,423,054
Cyprus0.8691,207,359
Poland0.86537,846,611
United Arab Emirates0.8639,890,402
Andorra0.85877,265
Lithuania0.8582,722,289
Qatar0.8562,881,053
Slovakia0.8555,459,642
Brunei0.853437,479
Saudi Arabia0.85334,813,871
Latvia0.8471,886,198
Portugal0.84710,196,709
Bahrain0.8461,701,575
Chile0.84319,116,201
Hungary0.8389,660,351
Croatia0.8314,105,267
Argentina0.82545,195,774
Oman0.8215,106,626
Russia0.816145,934,462
Montenegro0.814628,066
Bulgaria0.8136,948,445
Romania0.81119,237,691
Belarus0.8089,449,323
Bahamas0.807393,244
Uruguay0.8043,473,730
Kuwait0.8034,270,571
Malaysia0.80232,365,999
Barbados0.8287,375
Kazakhstan0.818,776,707
Palau0.79818,094
Iran0.79883,992,949
Seychelles0.79798,347
Costa Rica0.7945,094,118
Turkey0.79184,339,067
Mauritius0.791,271,768
Panama0.7894,314,767
Serbia0.7878,737,371
Albania0.7852,877,797
Trinidad And Tobago0.7841,399,488
Antigua And Barbuda0.7897,929
Georgia0.783,989,167
Saint Kitts And Nevis0.77853,199
Cuba0.77711,326,616
Mexico0.774128,932,753
Grenada0.772112,523
Sri Lanka0.7721,413,249
Bosnia And Herzegovina0.7683,280,819
Venezuela0.76128,435,940
Brazil0.759212,559,417
Macedonia0.7572,083,374
Lebanon0.7576,825,445
Azerbaijan0.75710,139,177
Armenia0.7552,963,243
Thailand0.75569,799,978
Algeria0.75443,851,044
Ecuador0.75217,643,054
China0.7521,439,323,776
Ukraine0.75143,733,762
Peru0.7532,971,854
Saint Lucia0.747183,627
Colombia0.74750,882,891
Fiji0.741896,445
Mongolia0.7413,278,290
Dominican Republic0.73610,847,910
Jordan0.73510,203,134
Tunisia0.73511,818,619
Jamaica0.7322,961,167
Tonga0.726105,695
Saint Vincent And The Grenadines0.723110,940
Suriname0.72586,632
Maldives0.717540,544
Botswana0.7172,351,627
Dominica0.71571,986
Samoa0.713198,414
Uzbekistan0.7133,469,203
Marshall Islands0.70859,190
Belize0.708397,628
Turkmenistan0.7066,031,200
Libya0.7066,871,292
Gabon0.7022,225,734
Paraguay0.7027,132,538
Moldova0.74,033,963
South Africa0.69959,308,690
Philippines0.699109,581,078
Egypt0.696102,334,404
Vietnam0.69497,338,579
Indonesia0.694273,523,615
Bolivia0.69311,673,021
Palestine0.6865,101,414
Iraq0.68540,222,493
El Salvador0.6746,486,205
Kyrgyzstan0.6726,524,195
Morocco0.66736,910,560
Nicaragua0.6586,624,554
Cape Verde0.654555,987
Guyana0.654786,552
Tajikistan0.659,537,645
Guatemala0.6517,915,568
Namibia0.6472,540,905
India0.641,380,004,385
Micronesia0.627115,023
Timor Leste0.6251,318,445
Honduras0.6179,904,607
Kiribati0.612119,449
Bhutan0.612771,608
Bangladesh0.608164,689,383
Republic Of The Congo0.6065,518,087
Vanuatu0.603307,145
Laos0.6017,275,560
Ghana0.59231,072,940
Equatorial Guinea0.5911,402,985
Kenya0.5953,771,296
Sao Tome And Principe0.589219,159
Swaziland0.5881,160,164
Zambia0.58818,383,955
Cambodia0.58216,718,965
Angola0.58132,866,272
Myanmar0.57854,409,800
Nepal0.57429,136,808
Pakistan0.562220,892,340
Cameroon0.55626,545,863
Solomon Islands0.546686,884
Papua New Guinea0.5448,947,024
Tanzania0.53859,734,218
Syria0.53617,500,658
Zimbabwe0.53514,862,924
Nigeria0.532206,139,589
Rwanda0.52412,952,218
Lesotho0.522,142,249
Mauritania0.524,649,658
Madagascar0.51927,691,018
Uganda0.51645,741,007
Benin0.51512,123,200
Senegal0.50516,743,927
Comoros0.503869,601
Togo0.5038,278,724
Sudan0.50243,849,260
Haiti0.49811,402,528
Afghanistan0.49838,928,346
Ivory Coast0.49226,378,274
Malawi0.47719,129,952
Djibouti0.476988,000
Ethiopia0.463114,963,588
Gambia0.462,416,668
Guinea0.45913,132,795
Dr Congo0.45789,561,403
Guinea Bissau0.4551,968,001
Yemen0.45229,825,964
Eritrea0.443,546,421
Mozambique0.43731,255,435
Liberia0.4355,057,681
Mali0.42720,250,833
Burkina Faso0.42320,903,273
Sierra Leone0.4197,976,983
Burundi0.41711,890,784
Chad0.40416,425,864
South Sudan0.38811,193,725
Central African Republic0.3674,829,767
Niger0.35424,206,644
Tuvalu011,792
Somalia015,893,222