Developed Countries List

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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

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Developed Countries List

Country Human Development Index 2021 Population
Norway0.9535,465,630
Switzerland0.9448,715,494
Australia0.93925,788,215
Ireland0.9384,982,907
Germany0.93683,900,473
Iceland0.935343,353
Hong Kong0.9337,552,810
Sweden0.93310,160,169
Singapore0.9325,896,686
Netherlands0.93117,173,099
Denmark0.9295,813,298
Canada0.92638,067,903
United States0.924332,915,073
United Kingdom0.92268,207,116
Finland0.925,548,360
New Zealand0.9174,860,643
Liechtenstein0.91638,250
Belgium0.91611,632,326
Japan0.909126,050,804
Austria0.9089,043,070
Luxembourg0.904634,814
Israel0.9038,789,774
South Korea0.90351,305,186
France0.90165,426,179
Slovenia0.8962,078,724
Spain0.89146,745,216
Czech Republic0.88810,724,555
Italy0.8860,367,477
Malta0.878442,784
Estonia0.8711,325,185
Greece0.8710,370,744
Cyprus0.8691,215,584
Poland0.86537,797,005
United Arab Emirates0.8639,991,089
Andorra0.85877,355
Lithuania0.8582,689,862
Qatar0.8562,930,528
Slovakia0.8555,460,721
Brunei0.853441,532
Saudi Arabia0.85335,340,683
Latvia0.8471,866,942
Portugal0.84710,167,925
Bahrain0.8461,748,296
Chile0.84319,212,361
Hungary0.8389,634,164
Croatia0.8314,081,651
Argentina0.82545,605,826
Oman0.8215,223,375
Russia0.816145,912,025
Montenegro0.814628,053
Bulgaria0.8136,896,663
Romania0.81119,127,774
Belarus0.8089,442,862
Bahamas0.807396,913
Uruguay0.8043,485,151
Kuwait0.8034,328,550
Malaysia0.80232,776,194
Barbados0.8287,711
Kazakhstan0.818,994,962
Palau0.79818,169
Iran0.79885,028,759
Seychelles0.79798,908
Costa Rica0.7945,139,052
Turkey0.79185,042,738
Mauritius0.791,273,433
Panama0.7894,381,579
Serbia0.7878,697,550
Albania0.7852,872,933
Trinidad And Tobago0.7841,403,375
Antigua And Barbuda0.7898,731
Georgia0.783,979,765
Saint Kitts And Nevis0.77853,544
Cuba0.77711,317,505
Mexico0.774130,262,216
Grenada0.772113,021
Sri Lanka0.7721,497,310
Bosnia And Herzegovina0.7683,263,466
Venezuela0.76128,704,954
Brazil0.759213,993,437
Lebanon0.7576,769,146
Azerbaijan0.75710,223,342
Armenia0.7552,968,127
Thailand0.75569,950,850
Algeria0.75444,616,624
Ecuador0.75217,888,475
China0.7521,444,216,107
Ukraine0.75143,466,819
Peru0.7533,359,418
Saint Lucia0.747184,400
Colombia0.74751,265,844
Fiji0.741902,906
Mongolia0.7413,329,289
Dominican Republic0.73610,953,703
Jordan0.73510,269,021
Tunisia0.73511,935,766
Jamaica0.7322,973,463
Tonga0.726106,760
Saint Vincent And The Grenadines0.723111,263
Suriname0.72591,800
Maldives0.717543,617
Botswana0.7172,397,241
Dominica0.71572,167
Samoa0.713200,149
Uzbekistan0.7133,935,763
Marshall Islands0.70859,610
Belize0.708404,914
Turkmenistan0.7066,117,924
Libya0.7066,958,532
Gabon0.7022,278,825
Paraguay0.7027,219,638
Moldova0.74,024,019
South Africa0.69960,041,994
Philippines0.699111,046,913
Egypt0.696104,258,327
Vietnam0.69498,168,833
Indonesia0.694276,361,783
Bolivia0.69311,832,940
Palestine0.6865,222,748
Iraq0.68541,179,350
El Salvador0.6746,518,499
Kyrgyzstan0.6726,628,356
Morocco0.66737,344,795
Nicaragua0.6586,702,385
Cape Verde0.654561,898
Guyana0.654790,326
Tajikistan0.659,749,627
Guatemala0.6518,249,860
Namibia0.6472,587,344
India0.641,393,409,038
Micronesia0.627116,254
Timor Leste0.6251,343,873
Honduras0.61710,062,991
Kiribati0.612121,392
Bhutan0.612779,898
Bangladesh0.608166,303,498
Republic Of The Congo0.6065,657,013
Vanuatu0.603314,464
Laos0.6017,379,358
Ghana0.59231,732,129
Equatorial Guinea0.5911,449,896
Kenya0.5954,985,698
Sao Tome And Principe0.589223,368
Swaziland0.5881,172,362
Zambia0.58818,920,651
Cambodia0.58216,946,438
Angola0.58133,933,610
Myanmar0.57854,806,012
Nepal0.57429,674,920
Pakistan0.562225,199,937
Cameroon0.55627,224,265
Solomon Islands0.546703,996
Papua New Guinea0.5449,119,010
Tanzania0.53861,498,437
Syria0.53618,275,702
Zimbabwe0.53515,092,171
Nigeria0.532211,400,708
Rwanda0.52413,276,513
Lesotho0.522,159,079
Mauritania0.524,775,119
Madagascar0.51928,427,328
Uganda0.51647,123,531
Benin0.51512,451,040
Senegal0.50517,196,301
Comoros0.503888,451
Togo0.5038,478,250
Sudan0.50244,909,353
Haiti0.49811,541,685
Afghanistan0.49839,835,428
Ivory Coast0.49227,053,629
Malawi0.47719,647,684
Djibouti0.4761,002,187
Ethiopia0.463117,876,227
Gambia0.462,486,945
Guinea0.45913,497,244
Dr Congo0.45792,377,993
Guinea Bissau0.4552,015,494
Yemen0.45230,490,640
Eritrea0.443,601,467
Mozambique0.43732,163,047
Liberia0.4355,180,203
Mali0.42720,855,735
Burkina Faso0.42321,497,096
Sierra Leone0.4198,141,343
Burundi0.41712,255,433
Chad0.40416,914,985
South Sudan0.38811,381,378
Central African Republic0.3674,919,981
Niger0.35425,130,817
Tuvalu011,931
Somalia016,359,504

Developed Countries List