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DATA UPDATES

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NOTES & SOURCES

NOTES

The Data Sheet lists all geopolitical entities with populations of 150,000 or more and all members of the UN. These include sovereign states, dependencies, overseas departments, and some territories whose status or boundaries may be undetermined or in dispute. More developed regions, following the UN classification, comprise all of Europe and North America, plus Australia, Japan, and New Zealand. All other regions and countries are classified as less developed. The least developed countries consist of 48 countries with especially low incomes, high economic vulnerability, and poor human development indicators; 34 of these countries are in sub-Saharan Africa, 13 in Asia, and one in the Caribbean. The criteria and list of countries, as defined by the UN, can be found at http://unohrlls.org/about-ldcs/.

Sub-Saharan Africa: All countries of Africa except the northern African countries of Algeria, Egypt, Libya, Morocco, Sudan, Tunisia, and Western Sahara.

World and Regional Totals: Regional population totals are independently rounded and include small countries or areas not shown. Regional and world rates and percentages are weighted averages of countries for which data are available. Regional averages are shown when data or estimates are available for at least three-quarters of the region’s population.

World Population Data Sheets from different years should not be used as a time series. Fluctuations in values from year to year often reflect revisions based on new data or estimates rather than actual changes in levels. Additional information on likely trends and consistent time series can be obtained from PRB, and are also available from UN and U.S. Census Bureau publications and websites.

Country-specific notes include:

  • The status of Western Sahara is disputed by Morocco.
  • SAR stands for Special Administrative Region.
  • Neither the population of Russia nor the population of Ukraine includes the population of Crimea, estimated at 2.3 million. The population is included in the regional total for Eastern Europe.
  • Kosovo declared independence from Serbia on Feb. 17, 2008. Serbia has not recognized Kosovo’s independence.
  • Macedonia is part of the former Yugoslav Republic.
  • (—) Indicates data unavailable or inapplicable.

    A date range indicates the most recent data point during that time period.

    SOURCES

    The rates and figures are primarily compiled from the following sources: official country statistical yearbooks, bulletins, and websites; the UN Demographic Yearbook, 2014; and Population and Vital Statistics Report of the UN Statistics Division; World Population Prospects: The 2015 Revision of the UN Population Division; and the International Data Base of the International Programs Center, U.S. Census Bureau. Other sources include recent demographic surveys such as the Demographic and Health Surveys, Multiple Indicator Cluster Surveys, Performance and Monitoring Accountability (PMA) 2020 Surveys,, special studies, and direct communication with demographers and statistical bureaus in the United States and abroad. Specific data sources may be obtained by contacting the authors of the 2016 World Population Data Sheet. For countries with complete registration of births and deaths, rates are those most recently reported. For more developed countries, nearly all vital rates refer to 2015 or 2014.

    Source information for specific indicators is available in the Data module when an indicator is selected in the dropdown menus.

    ACKNOWLEDGMENTS

    This publication is funded by the William and Flora Hewlett Foundation, the David and Lucile Packard Foundation, the U.S. Agency for International Development (PACE Project, No. AID-0AA-A-16-00002), and supporters. The contents are the responsibility of the Population Reference Bureau and do not necessarily reflect the views of USAID or the United States government.

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