BlogHow many countries are there in the world and Country Names List

How many countries are there in the world and Country Names List

World and Country Names List: The question of how many countries there are in the world may seem simple at first glance, but it’s a surprisingly complex and debated topic. The number of recognized countries can vary depending on who you ask and the criteria used for recognition. In this blog, we’ll explore the concept of countries, the various criteria for defining them, and provide a comprehensive list of countries around the world.

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    World and Country Names List

    The Concept of a Country

    A country, also known as a nation or a state, is a distinct geopolitical entity with its own government, borders, and population. Countries have the authority to make and enforce their own laws, control their territory, and engage in international relations. They are the basic building blocks of the global political landscape.

    Criteria for Defining a Country

    Defining a country may seem straightforward, but different criteria can be used, leading to varying counts of recognized countries. Some of the most common criteria include:


    Sovereignty is a key criterion for recognizing a country. A sovereign state has complete control over its territory and government without external interference. This criterion is fundamental to international law.

    International Recognition

    A country is often considered legitimate if it is recognized by other sovereign states. Recognition can come through diplomatic relations, membership in international organizations like the United Nations, and bilateral agreements.

    Permanent Population

    Countries typically have a permanent population, although the size of the population may vary significantly.

    Defined Territory

    A country must have clearly defined borders or territory. These borders may be disputed, but a country must have some level of territorial control.

    Effective Government

    A country must have an effective government that exercises control over its territory and population. The form of government can vary widely, from democracies to monarchies and dictatorships.

    Capacity to enter in a relations with Other States

    A country should have the ability to engage in diplomatic relations with other countries and participate in international affairs.

    How many Countries are there?

    Given the various criteria and perspectives, the number of recognized countries can vary. As of my last knowledge update in September 2021, the United Nations recognizes 193 member states. This count includes virtually all internationally recognized countries. However, some entities are not UN members but are still recognized as countries by some nations and organizations. Notable examples include:


    Taiwan considers itself a sovereign state and operates with its own government, military, and constitution. However, China considers Taiwan to be a part of its territory, and many countries do not officially recognize Taiwan as a separate country due to political sensitivities.


    Kosovo declared independence from Serbia in 2008. While Kosovo is recognized as an independent country by a significant number of UN member states, Serbia and some other countries do not recognize its sovereignty.


    The State of Palestine was granted non-member observer status at the United Nations in 2012. However, the status of Palestine as a fully recognized country remains a subject of international debate.

    Western Sahara

    Western Sahara’s status is disputed, with Morocco claiming it as part of its territory and the Sahrawi Arab Democratic Republic (SADR) asserting its independence.

    It’s important to note that the recognition of these entities as countries varies among nations and international organizations, contributing to the complexity of determining the exact number of countries.

    Comprehensive List of Countries

    Below is a list of countries recognized by the United Nations and most of the international community as of my last knowledge update in September 2021. Please keep in mind that geopolitical changes can occur, and the status of some regions may have evolved since then.

    1. Afghanistan
    2. Albania
    3. Algeria
    4. Andorra
    5. Angola
    6. Antigua and Barbuda
    7. Argentina
    8. Armenia
    9. Australia
    10. Austria
    11. Azerbaijan
    12. Bahamas
    13. Bahrain
    14. Bangladesh
    15. Barbados
    16. Belarus
    17. Belgium
    18. Belize
    19. Benin
    20. Bhutan
    21. Bolivia
    22. Bosnia and Herzegovina
    23. Botswana
    24. Brazil
    25. Brunei
    26. Bulgaria
    27. Burkina Faso
    28. Burundi
    29. Cabo Verde
    30. Cambodia
    31. Cameroon
    32. Canada
    33. Central African Republic
    34. Chad
    35. Chile
    36. China
    37. Colombia
    38. Comoros
    39. Congo (Brazzaville)
    40. Congo (Kinshasa)
    41. Costa Rica
    42. Côte d’Ivoire
    43. Croatia
    44. Cuba
    45. Cyprus
    46. Czech Republic
    47. Denmark
    48. Djibouti
    49. Dominica
    50. Dominican Republic
    51. Ecuador
    52. Egypt
    53. El Salvador
    54. Equatorial Guinea
    55. Eritrea
    56. Estonia
    57. Eswatini
    58. Ethiopia
    59. Fiji
    60. Finland
    61. France
    62. Gabon
    63. Gambia
    64. Georgia
    65. Germany
    66. Ghana
    67. Greece
    68. Grenada
    69. Guatemala
    70. Guinea
    71. Guinea-Bissau
    72. Guyana
    73. Haiti
    74. Holy See
    75. Honduras
    76. Hungary
    77. Iceland
    78. India
    79. Indonesia
    80. Iran
    81. Iraq
    82. Ireland
    83. Israel
    84. Italy
    85. Jamaica
    86. Japan
    87. Jordan
    88. Kazakhstan
    89. Kenya
    90. Kiribati
    91. Kuwait
    92. Kyrgyzstan
    93. Laos
    94. Latvia
    95. Lebanon
    96. Lesotho
    97. Liberia
    98. Libya
    99. Liechtenstein
    100. Lithuania
    101. Luxembourg
    102. Madagascar
    103. Malawi
    104. Malaysia
    105. Maldives
    106. Mali
    107. Malta
    108. Marshall Islands
    109. Mauritania
    110. Mauritius
    111. Mexico
    112. Micronesia
    113. Moldova
    114. Monaco
    115. Mongolia
    116. Montenegro
    117. Morocco
    118. Mozambique
    119. Myanmar (Burma)
    120. Namibia
    121. Nauru
    122. Nepal
    123. Netherlands
    124. New Zealand
    125. Nicaragua
    126. Niger
    127. Nigeria
    128. North Korea
    129. North Macedonia
    130. Norway
    131. Oman
    132. Pakistan
    133. Palau
    134. Palestine State
    135. Panama
    136. Papua New Guinea
    137. Paraguay
    138. Peru
    139. Philippines
    140. Poland
    141. Portugal
    142. Qatar
    143. Romania
    144. Russia
    145. Rwanda
    146. Saint Kitts and Nevis
    147. Saint Lucia
    148. Saint Vincent and the Grenadines
    149. Samoa
    150. San Marino
    151. Sao Tome and Principe
    152. Saudi Arabia
    153. Senegal
    154. Serbia
    155. Seychelles
    156. Sierra Leone
    157. Singapore
    158. Slovakia
    159. Slovenia
    160. Solomon Islands
    161. Somalia
    162. South Africa
    163. South Korea


    In summary, the number of recognized countries in the world can vary due to factors like sovereignty, international recognition, and political disputes. As of September 2021, the United Nations recognized 193 member states as the core of internationally accepted countries. However, entities like Taiwan, Kosovo, Palestine, and Western Sahara have complex status issues. The criteria for defining a country include sovereignty, permanent population, defined territory, effective government, and the capacity for international relations. The provided list offers an overview of widely recognized countries, but geopolitical changes can lead to alterations in this count. Ultimately, the concept of a country remains dynamic and subject to evolving global dynamics.

    World and Country Names List FAQs

    How many countries are there in the world according to the United Nations?

    As of my last knowledge update in September 2021, the United Nations recognizes 193 member states as sovereign countries.

    Are there entities that are not United Nations members but are still considered countries?

    Yes, there are entities like Taiwan, Kosovo, Palestine, and Western Sahara that are not UN members but are recognized as countries by some nations and organizations due to unique geopolitical situations.

    Why is the number of recognized countries not consistent among different sources?

    The number of recognized countries can vary because different entities and organizations may have varying criteria for recognition, leading to discrepancies in the count

    Can a region or territory become a country if it meets certain criteria?

    Yes, if a region or territory meets the criteria of sovereignty, international recognition, and other relevant factors, it can potentially become a recognized country through diplomatic and international processes.

    How often does the list of recognized countries change?

    The list of recognized countries can change over time due to geopolitical developments, negotiations, and changes in international relations. It's important to stay updated on global news to understand any shifts in country recognition.



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