Visualizing the Most Populous Countries in the World

By Matt Dallisson, 25/02/2021

 

The Most Populous Countries in the World

Visualizing the Most Populous Countries in the World

 

India’s population is projected to surpass China’s as soon as 2022.

 

While this is consequential on a global economic level, it also leaves other population trends overlooked. For instance, Nigeria is projected to have more people than the U.S., the world’s third-largest country by population, by the year 2050.

 

This treemap visualization, adapted from PopulationPyramid.net, is an overview of the global population in 2020, showing us the world’s most populous countries.

 

The 50 Most Populous Countries

 

China, with a population of 1.44 billion, is the most populous country worldwide.

 

In 2019, over 60% of its population resided in urban centers, a trend that has seen the portion of city dwellers double over the last 25 years. For context, 83% of the U.S. population lives in cities, while just 35% of India’s population dwells in urban areas.

 

Together, China and India’s populations make up over 36% of the global total.

Country Population (2020)
1 🇨🇳 China 1,439,323,774
2 🇮🇳 India 1,380,004,385
3 🇺🇸 U.S. 331,002,647
4 🇮🇩 Indonesia 273,523,621
5 🇵🇰 Pakistan 220,892,331
6 🇧🇷 Brazil 212,559,409
7 🇳🇬 Nigeria 206,139,587
8 🇧🇩 Bangladesh 164,689,383
9 🇷🇺 Russian Federation 145,934,460
10 🇲🇽 Mexico 128,932,753
11 🇯🇵 Japan 126,476,458
12 🇪🇹 Ethiopia 114,963,583
13 🇵🇭 Philippines 109,581,085
14 🇪🇬 Egypt 102,334,403
15 🇻🇳 Vietnam 97,338,583
16 🇨🇩 D.R. Congo 89,561,404
17 🇹🇷 Turkey 84,339,067
18 🇮🇷 Iran 83,992,953
19 🇩🇪 Germany 83,783,945
20 🇹🇭 Thailand 69,799,978
21 🇬🇧 United Kingdom 67,886,004
22 🇫🇷 France 65,273,512
23 🇮🇹 Italy 60,461,828
24 🇹🇿 Tanzania 59,734,213
25 🇿🇦 South Africa 59,308,690
26 🇲🇲 Myanmar 54,409,794
27 🇰🇪Kenya 53,771,300
28 🇰🇷 Republic of Korea 51,269,183
29 🇨🇴 Colombia 50,882,884
30 🇪🇸 Spain 46,754,783
31 🇺🇬 Uganda 45,741,000
32 🇦🇷 Argentina 45,195,777
33 🇩🇿 Algeria 43,851,043
34 🇸🇩 Sudan 43,849,269
35 🇺🇦 Ukraine 43,733,759
36 🇮🇶 Iraq 40,222,503
37 🇦🇫 Afghanistan 38,928,341
38 🇵🇱 Poland 37,846,605
39 🇨🇦 Canada 37,742,157
40 🇲🇦 Morocco 36,910,558
41 🇸🇦 Saudi Arabia 34,813,867
42 🇺🇿 Uzbekistan 33,469,199
43 🇵🇪 Peru 32,971,846
44 🇦🇴 Angola 32,866,268
45 🇲🇾 Malaysia 32,365,998
46 🇲🇿 Mozambique 31,255,435
47 🇬🇭 Ghana 31,072,945
48 🇾🇪 Yemen 29,825,968
49 🇳🇵 Nepal 29,136,808
50 🇻🇪 Venezuela 28,435,943

Extending over 17,000 islands, Indonesia comes fourth among the world’s most populous countries, standing at 273.5 million people.

 

Pakistan comes in fifth, with 220.8 million. Karachi, located on the southeastern coast of Pakistan, is home to over 16 million people alone. It is Pakistan’s most populous city, and the seventh-largest city in the world.

 

Nigeria also makes it onto the list. In just three decades, the country’s population is projected to climb from 206 million to 400 million—growing at a percentage clip that is more than double that of India.

 

The 50 Least Populous Countries

 

Combined, the 50 least-populous countries make up 0.4% of the total world population. By contrast, the top 50 account for 87% of the total.

 

Unsurprisingly, the world’s low population nations are situated on small islands, often tropical and reliant on tourism.

 

Country Population (2020)
1 🇦🇬 Antigua and Barbuda 97,928
2 🇸🇨 Seychelles 98,340
3 🇻🇮 United States Virgin Islands 104,423
4 🇹🇴 Tonga 105,697
5 🇦🇼 Aruba 106,766
6 🇻🇨 Saint Vincent and the Grenadines 110,947
7 🇬🇩 Grenada 112,519
8 🇫🇲 Micronesia (Fed. States of) 115,021
9 🇰🇮 Kiribati 119,446
10 🇨🇼 Curaçao 164,100
11 🇬🇺 Guam 168,783
12 Channel Islands 173,859
13 🇱🇨 Saint Lucia 183,629
14 🇼🇸 Samoa 198,410
15 🇸🇹 Sao Tome and Principe 219,161
16 Mayotte 272,813
17 🇵🇫 French Polynesia 280,904
18 🇳🇨 New Caledonia 285,491
19 🇧🇧 Barbados 287,371
20 🇬🇫 French Guiana 298,682
21 🇻🇺 Vanuatu 307,150
22 🇮🇸 Iceland 341,250
23 🇲🇶 Martinique 375,265
24 🇧🇸 Bahamas 393,248
25 🇧🇿 Belize 397,621
26 🇬🇵 Guadeloupe 400,127
27 🇧🇳 Brunei Darussalam 437,483
28 🇲🇹 Malta 441,539
29 🇲🇻 Maldives 540,542
30 Cabo Verde 555,988
31 🇸🇷 Suriname 586,634
32 🇪🇭 Western Sahara 597,330
33 🇱🇺 Luxembourg 625,976
34 🇲🇪 Montenegro 628,062
35 🇲🇴 China, Macao SAR 649,342
36 🇸🇧 Solomon Islands 686,878
37 🇧🇹 Bhutan 771,612
38 🇬🇾 Guyana 786,559
39 🇰🇲 Comoros 869,595
40 🇷🇪 Réunion 895,308
41 🇫🇯 Fiji 896,444
42 🇩🇯 Djibouti 988,002
43 🇸🇿 Swaziland 1,160,164
44 🇨🇾 Cyprus 1,207,361
45 🇲🇺 Mauritius 1,271,767
46 🇹🇱 Timor-Leste 1,318,442
47 🇪🇪 Estonia 1,326,539
48 🇹🇹 Trinidad and Tobago 1,399,491
49 🇬🇶 Equatorial Guinea 1,402,985
50 🇧🇭 Bahrain 1,701,583

The Caribbean island nation of Antigua and Barbuda has the smallest population in the world, with just 97,928 inhabitants. While it may be small in terms of total inhabitants, its population density is another story—with over 222 people per square kilometer. That is roughly 50% higher than China, but about half the population density of India.

 

Meanwhile, the 33 pacific islands of Kiribati also make the top 10 list of the least populous countries worldwide. With a population of 119,400, Kiribati was a testing site for atomic bombs by the British and Americans during the 1960s. The island reached independence in 1979, after being under crown colonial rule since 1916.

 

Regional Median Ages

 

How about the median ages across these populations?

 

By far, the African region has the lowest median age at 19.8 years old, partially driven by a high birth rate of 4.7 children per woman. In contrast, the global average falls around 2.5 children.

 

By 2050, Africa’s population will effectively double from 1.3 billion to 2.5 billion.

 

Region Annual Rate of Natural Population Increase Median Age (2020)
Africa 2.5% 19.8 years
Asia 0.9% 32.1 years
Central America 1.2% 28.3 years
Europe -0.1% 42.7 years
Latin America & Caribbean 0.9% 30.9 years
Northern America 0.3% 38.6 years
Oceania 0.9% 33.5 years
South America 0.9% 32.0 years
World 1.0% 30.9 years

Source: Our World in Data

 

On the other hand, Europe is the oldest, at 42.7 years for this demographic metric.

 

With a median age of 47.9, Italy has the second-oldest population in the world, topped only by Japan. Meanwhile, Germany (46.6), Portugal (46.2), and Spain (45.5) fall next in line. If current trends continue, by 2050, half of Europe’s population will be non-working and over the age of 65.

 

That said, it should be noted that this trend is not exclusive to Europe. In 30 years, 1.5 billion people globally will be over the age of 65, amounting to 16% of the global population.

This content was originally published here.

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