Largest Countries in Asia 2022

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With a total land area of 31,105,763 km2 (12,009,997 mi2), Asia is far and away the largest continent on Earth. Asia features a wide range of biomes and climates, from the frigid tundra of Siberia in Russia to the deserts of Saudi Arabia to the equatorial jungles of Indonesia. What are the largest countries in Asia? The answer to that question is not entirely straightforward. Asia includes 45 sovereign states that are fully recognized by the United Nations, as well as several non-country territories such as Taiwan, Hong Kong, Macau, and Palestine, and four transcontinental countries (Russia, Egypt, Cyprus, and Turkey) that have land in Asia but are typically counted as European or African. This is important because two of those transcontinental countries, Russia and Turkey, are the first and tenth largest on the continent when counted as Asian. The list below shows them (marked with an *) in relation to Asia's "proper" top 10 largest countries.

Top 12 Largest Countries in Asia by Land Area (United Nations):

  1. Russia* — 16,376,870 km2 (6,323,142 mi2)
  2. China — 9,388,210 km2 (3,624,807 mi2)
  3. India — 2,973,190 km2 (1,147,955 mi2)
  4. Kazakhstan — 2,699,700 km2 (1,042,360 mi2)
  5. Saudi Arabia — 2,149,690 km2 (830,000 mi2)
  6. Indonesia — 1,877,519 km2 (724,914 mi2)
  7. Iran — 1,628,760 km2 (628,867 mi2)
  8. Mongolia — 1,557,250 km2 (601,257 mi2)
  9. Pakistan — 770,880 km2 (297,638 mi2)
  10. Turkey* — 769,630 km2 (297,156 mi2)
  11. Myanmar — 769,630 km2 (297,156 mi2)
  12. Afghanistan — 652,230 km2 (251,827 mi2)

Whether grouped with Asia or Europe, Russia tops any list of the world's largest countries by area, being nearly twice the size of the next closest country. The order of the next three countries, Canada, the United States, and China, varies a bit depending upon two variables. First, whether the ranking counts land area or total area, which also includes certain bodies of water such as rivers, lakes, and coastal waters. And second, whether China's area should include only the mainland or also its territory Taiwan and Special Administrative Regions Hong Kong and Macau, all three of which would likely be independent countries if not for China's influence at the United Nations.

Country Land Area Total Area Inland Waters
Canada 896,559 987,975 91,416
China (all regions) 942,470 960,001 17,531
China (mainland only) 938,821 956,291 17,470
United States 914,742 983,151 68,409

Asia is also the globe's most populous continent thanks to the presence of China (pop. 1,444,216,107) and India (pop. 1,393,409,038), the world's two most heavily populated countries. Together, these two countries accounted for just over 36% of the world's total population in 2021. In fact, when ordered in terms of population instead of land area, the list of largest countries in Asia shifts considerably:

Top 13 Largest Countries in Asia by Population (United Nations 2021):

  1. China — 1,444,216,107
  2. India — 1,393,409,038
  3. Indonesia — 276,361,783
  4. Pakistan — 225,199,937
  5. Bangladesh — 166,303,498
  6. Russia* — 145,934,462
  7. Japan — 126,050,804
  8. Philippines — 111,046,913
  9. Egypt* — 104,258,327
  10. Vietnam — 98,168,833
  11. Turkey* — 85,042,738
  12. Iran — 85,028,759
  13. Thailand — 69,950,850

Asia also includes several of the world's smallest countries. The smallest nation in Asia is Macau, a non-sovereign "Special Administrative Region" claimed by China. Due to its connections with China, Macau is not always considered a fully fledged country. But when it is, it is also the eighth smallest country in the world. Macau squeezes a population of roughly 682,800 into a tiny total area of 33 km2 (13 mi2).

Top 14 Smallest Countries in Asia by Land Area (United Nations)

  1. Macau (China SAR) — 33 km2 (13 mi2)
  2. Maldives — 300 km2 (116 mi2)
  3. Singapore — 716 km2 (276 mi2)
  4. Bahrain — 783 km2 (302 mi2)
  5. Hong Kong (China SAR) — 1,050 km2 (405 mi2)
  6. Brunei Darussalam — 5,270 km2 (2,035 mi2)
  7. Palestine (U.N. observer state) — 6,020 km2 (2,324 mi2)
  8. Cyprus* — 9,240 km2 (3,568 mi2)
  9. Lebanon — 10,230 km2 (3,950 mi2)
  10. Qatar — 11,490 km2 (4,436 mi2)
  11. Timor-Leste — 14,870 km2 (5,741 mi2)
  12. Kuwait — 17,820 km2 (6,880 mi2)
  13. Israel — 21,640 km2 (8,355 mi2)
  14. Bhutan — 28,140 km2 (10,865 mi2)

Largest Countries in Asia 2022

Largest Countries in Asia 2022

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