Least Developed Countries 2020

According to the United Nations, least developed countries (LDCs) are low-income countries facing severe structural setbacks to sustainable development. LDCs have low levels of human assets and are highly vulnerable to economic and environmental shocks.

Every three years, the Committee for Development (CDP) reviews the list of LDCs and assesses the three criteria: human assets, economic vulnerability, and gross national income per capita. There are currently 47 LDC countries. Five countries have been upgraded between 1994 and 2017:

There have been four United Nations conferences on LDCs, held every ten years. Two were held in Paris, one in Brussels, and the most recent in Istanbul, Turkey in 2011. The most recent conference endorsed the goal of boosting half of the current LDCs out of the category by 2022.

Country development is based on the Human Development Index (HDI), an index used to rank countries and is quantified by looking at a country’s human development such as life expectancy, education, and per capita income indicators. HDI places countries on a scale of 0-1 and categorizes them into one of four levels of human development: low human developed (0-.55), medium human development (.55-.70), high human development (.70-80), and very high human development (.80-1.0).

The ten least developed countries in the world, according to HDI rankings, are:

  1. Niger
  2. Central African Republic
  3. South Sudan
  4. Chad
  5. Burundi
  6. Sierra Leone
  7. Burkina Faso
  8. Mali
  9. Liberia
  10. Mozambique

According to the Human Development Index, Niger is the least developed country in the world with an HDI of .354. Niger has widespread malnutrition and 44.1% of people live below to the poverty line. Additionally, Niger has the highest birth rate in the world of 7.4 births per woman and the result is a growing population contributing further to widespread poverty. Droughts have stunted agricultural and economic growth, and the country is plagued by conflict with the militant Islamist group Boko Haram.

LDCs have exclusive access to international support measures to assist LDCs with trade, development cooperation, and support for participation in the United Nations and other international processes. These measures are intended to help LDCs with growth and stability to boost them out of the category.

Below is a table with each country’s HDI rankings starting the lowest (LDCs).

Least Developed Countries 2020

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