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Women's Right to Vote

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Yes

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Women's Right to Vote by Country 2023

There is one country on Earth that does not give anyone the right to vote, and that is Eritrea. This is a country that has no history of free elections, but it was only granted its independence in 1993.

The first country to give women the right to vote with the Pitcairn Islands, which gave them this right in 1838. In 1840, the Kingdom of Hawaii gave women the right to vote, but Hawaii would eventually become a United States territory. There were several other countries that gave women the right to vote in the nineteenth century, including the Isle of Man, the Cook Islands, and New Zealand.

Which Countries Gave Women the Right To Vote in the 20th Century?

The vast majority of countries gave women the right to vote in the 20th century. One of the first ones to do so was Australia, which gave women the right to vote in 1902; however, indigenous populations did not get the right to vote until 1962. Someone gave women the right to vote in 1906, and Canada followed suit in 1917. The end of World War 1 was a big year for women, as several major countries gave women the right to vote around this time. This includes Germany, Austria, Ukraine, Russia, the Netherlands, Belgium, and the United Kingdom.

What Pushed Countries To Give Women the Right To Vote?

Women gaining the right to vote happened in waves. There are several reasons why women gain the right to vote at different times. Major wars were certainly a driver of giving women the right to vote, as World War I pushed the majority of countries on Earth to at least consider giving women the right to vote. Social movements and cultural diffusion also gave women the right to vote, as did the calculations of various major political parties, all of whom viewed winning the support of women as a way to hold onto power. Even though different countries have different reasons for giving women the right to vote, there are a few common themes across the world.

What Were the Impacts of Giving Women the Right To Vote?

Giving women the right to vote has been viewed as a universal positive. The vast majority of countries experienced significant economic growth after giving women the right to vote. In addition, social support became significantly stronger after women were given the right to vote, as countries continue to pour resources into classes that were previously marginalized and underserved. Finally, giving women the right to vote has also encouraged everyone to participate more in government. When more people have a voice, the government does a better job of advocating for the advancement of everyone instead of just a select few. For all of these reasons, countries have slowly given women the right to vote, one at a time. There are still a few countries that do not have free elections at all.

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Country
Women's Right to Vote
Additional Details
Suffrage Granted
AfghanistanYesIn 1929 tribal leaders overturned Khan's reforms to Sharia law with a monarchy and no voting rights for anyone for nearly 40 years. | Women were once again granted voting rights in 1964 after a new constitution marked the next era of modern democracy. 1964
AlbaniaYesLimited women's suffrage was granted in 1920, and women obtained full voting rights in 19451945
AlgeriaYes1962
AndorraYes1970
ArgentinaYes1947
ArmeniaYes1919
AustraliaYesAustralian women, with the exception of aboriginal women, won the right to vote in 1902. Aborigines, male and female, did not have the right to vote until 1962.1902
AustriaYes1918
AzerbaijanYes1919
BahrainYes2002
BangladeshYes1972
BarbadosYes1951
BelarusYes1919
BelgiumYesWomen obtained the right to vote first with restrictions in 1919, and on equal terms with men in 1948. Women obtained the right to stand for elections in 1921.1919
BelizeYes1954
BhutanYes1953
BoliviaYesLimited women's suffrage in 1938 (only for literate women and those with a certain level of income). On equal terms with men since 1952.1952
Bosnia and HerzegovinaYes1945
BotswanaYes1965
BrazilYes1932
BulgariaYesMarried women (and by default widowed women) gained the right to vote on January 18, 1937, in local elections, but could not run for office. Single women were excluded from voting. Full voting rights were bestowed by the communist regime in September 1944 and reaffirmed by an electoral law reform on June 15, 1945.1944
Burkina FasoYes1958
CambodiaYes1955
CameroonYes1946
CanadaYesCanadian women, with the exception of Canadian Indian women, won the vote in 1917. Canadian Indians, male and female, did not win the vote until 1960.1917
Cape VerdeYes1975
Central African RepublicYes1986
ChadYes1958
ChileYesFrom 1934 to 1949, women could vote in local elections at 25, while men could vote in all elections at 21. In both cases, literacy was required.1949
ChinaYes1949
ColombiaYes1954
Costa RicaYes1949
CroatiaYes1945
CubaYes1934
CyprusYes1960
Czech RepublicYesThe Czechoslovak Constitution adopted on 29 February 1920 guaranteed the universal vote for every citizen including women to every electable body.1920
DenmarkYes1908 at local elections, 1915 at national parliamentary elections.1915
DominicaYes1951
Dominican RepublicYes1942
DR CongoYes1967
EcuadorYesDespite that Ecuador granted women suffrage in 1929 differences between men's and women's suffrage in Ecuador were only removed in 1967 (before 1967 women's vote was optional, while that of men was compulsory; since 1967 it is compulsory for both sexes).1929
EgyptYes1956
El SalvadorYesWomen obtained in 1939 suffrage with restrictions requiring literacy and a higher age. All restrictions were lifted in 1950 allowing women to vote, but women obtained the right to stand for elections only in 1961.1950
EritreaNoThere have not been elections in Eritrea since its independence in 1993.
EstoniaYes1917
EswatiniYes1968
EthiopiaYes1955
FijiYes1963
FinlandYes1906
FranceYesThe law was enacted in 1944, but the first elections were in 1945.1944
GabonYes1956
GambiaYes1960
GeorgiaYes1918
GermanyYes1918
GhanaYes1954
GreeceYes1930 - Local Elections, Literate Only; 1952 Unconditional1952
GuatemalaYesWomen could vote from 1945, but only if literate. Restrictions on women's suffrage were lifted in 1965.1965
GuineaYes1958
GuyanaYes1953
HaitiYes1950
HondurasYes1955
Hong KongYes1949
HungaryYesAfter 1919 men could vote from the age of 24 while women only gained the right to vote from the age of 30. There were also educational and economical criteria set for both genders, but all criteria were higher for women. After 1945 both men and women gained universal suffrage from the age of 20.1945
IcelandYes1908 at local elections, 1915 at national parliamentary elections.1915
IndiaYesIn 1947, on its independence from the United Kingdom, India granted equal voting rights to all men and women.1947
IndonesiaYes1937 (for Europeans only) 1945 (for all citizens, granted upon independence).1945
IranYes1963
IraqYes1947
IrelandYesFrom 1918, with the rest of the United Kingdom, women could vote at 30 with property qualifications or in university constituencies, while men could vote at 21 with no qualification. From separation in 1922, the Irish Free State gave equal voting rights to men and women.1922
IsraelYesWomen's suffrage was granted with the declaration of independence. But prior to that in the Jewish settlement in Palestine, suffrage was granted in 1920.1948
ItalyYesLocal elections in 1925. Full suffrage in 1945.1945
Ivory CoastYes1952
JamaicaYes1944
JapanYes1947
JordanYes1974
KazakhstanYes1993
KenyaYes1963
KiribatiYes1967
KuwaitYesAll voters must have been citizens of Kuwait for at least 20 years.2005
LaosYes1958
LatviaYes1917
LebanonYesIn 1957, a requirement for women (but not men) to have elementary education before voting was dropped, as was voting being compulsory for men.1952
LesothoYes1965
LiberiaYes1946
LibyaYesFrom 1951 women could vote on local elections.1963
LithuaniaYes1918
LuxembourgYes1919
MadagascarYes1959
MalawiYes1961
MalaysiaYes1955
MaldivesYes1932
MaliYes1956
MaltaYes1947
Marshall IslandsYes1979
MauritaniaYes1961
MauritiusYes1956
MexicoYes1947
MicronesiaYes1979
MoldovaYes1993
MongoliaYes1924
MontenegroYes1945
MoroccoYes1963
MozambiqueYes1975
MyanmarYes1922
NamibiaYesAt independence from South Africa.1989
NepalYes1951
NetherlandsYes1949
New ZealandYes1893
NicaraguaYes1955
NigerYes1948
NigeriaYes1958
North KoreaYes1946
North MacedoniaYes1945
NorwayYes1913
OmanYes1994
PakistanYes1947
PalauYes1979
PalestineYesWomen (and men) first voted in local elections in the West Bank in 1972. Women (and men) first elected a Palestinian parliament in 1996. However, the last general election was in 2006; there was supposed to be another in 2014 but elections have been delayed indefinitely.1972
PanamaYesLimited women's suffrage from 1941 (conditioned by level of education) equal women's suffrage from 1946.1946
Papua New GuineaYes1964
ParaguayYes1961
PeruYes1955
PhilippinesYesFilipino women voted in a 1937 plebiscite for their right to vote; women first voted in local elections later that year.1937
PolandYes1918
PortugalYesWith restrictions in 1911, later made illegal again until 1931 when it was reinstated with restrictions, restrictions other than age requirements lifted in 19761976
QatarYesWhile required by the constitution, general elections had been repeatedly delayed. Municipal elections have been held often.1997
Republic of the CongoYes1963
RomaniaYesStarting in 1929, women who met certain qualifications were allowed to vote in local elections. After the Constitution from 1938, the voting rights were extended to women for general elections by the Electoral Law 1939. Women could vote on equal terms with men, but both men and women had restrictions, and in practice the restrictions affected women more than men. In 1946, full equal voting rights were granted to men and women.1946
RussiaYes1918
Saint Kitts and NevisYes1951
San MarinoYes1959
Saudi ArabiaYesIn December 2015, women were first allowed to vote and run for office. However, there are no national elections in Saudi Arabia. The country is an absolute monarchy.2015
SenegalYes1945
SerbiaYes1945
SeychellesYes1948
Sierra LeoneYes1961
SingaporeYes1947
SlovakiaYes1920
SloveniaYes1945
Solomon IslandsYes1974
South AfricaYes1930 (European and Asian women) | Women of other races were enfranchised in 1994, at the same time as men of all races.1994
South KoreaYes1948
SpainYesWomen briefly held the right to vote from 1924 to 1926, but an absence of elections mean they never had the opportunity to go to the polls until 1933, after earning the right to vote in the 1931 Constitution passed after the elections. The government fell after only two elections in which women could vote, and no one would vote again until after the death of Francisco Franco.1931
Sri LankaYes1931
SudanYes1964
SurinameYes1948
SwedenYes1921
SwitzerlandYesWomen obtained the right to vote in national elections in 1971. Women obtained the right to vote at local canton level between 1959 (Vaud and Neuchâtel in that year) and 1972, except for 1989 in Appenzell Ausserrhoden and 1990 in Appenzell Innerrhoden.1971
SyriaYes1949
TaiwanYes1947
TajikistanYes1924
TanzaniaYes1959
ThailandYes1932
TogoYes1945
Trinidad and TobagoYesSuffrage was granted for the first time in 1925 to either sex, to men over the age of 21 and women over the age of 30, as in the United Kingdom (the "Mother Country", since Trinidad and Tobago was still a colony at the time). In 1945, full suffrage was granted to women.1945
TunisiaYes1957
TurkeyYes1930 (for local elections), 1934 (for national elections).1934
UgandaYes1962
UkraineYes1917
United Arab EmiratesYesElections in the United Arab Emirates occur on a national level. However, their democratic usefulness is disputed.2006
United KingdomYesFrom 1918 to 1928, women could vote at 30 with property qualifications or as graduates of UK universities, while men could vote at 21 with no qualification. From 1928 women had equal suffrage with men.1928
United StatesYesThe United States finally began allowing women to vote in 1920, after the ratification of the 19th Amendment to the Constitution.1920
UruguayYesFully equal civil rights and universal suffrage was granted by Constitution of 1917, though this suffrage was first exercised in 1927, in the plebiscite of Cerro Chato.1927
VanuatuYes1975
Vatican CityNoNo voting, and almost no women.
VenezuelaYesThough there are disputes as to the legitimacy of elections in Venezuela, they are ongoing at a national level.1946
VietnamYes1946
YemenYes1967
ZambiaYes1962
ZimbabweYes1919 (whites only)1978
showing: 170 rows

What was the last country to give women the right to vote?

Kuwait was the last country to give women the right to vote. Women gained this right back in 2005. However, there has been a strong push in recent years for Saudi Arabia to grant this right as well.

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