Learn Interesting Facts About Countries of the World

The Number of Countries in the World

How Many Countries Are in the World?

At CountryWatch.com, the criterion for coverage of a place “as a country” is dependent upon whether or not it has been recognized by the United States’ Department of State.  Consequently, CountryWatch.com covers 190 countries in the world, including the former Yugoslavia – Serbia and Montenegro, for a total of 191 countries.[1]

Because the United Nations has 189 member states, many people erroneously assume there are only 189 countries or sovereign states, yet there are a number of countries, such as the Holy See (Vatican City) and Switzerland, which are not included in this list.  Switzerland, for example, upholds its tenet of neutrality by holding only “observer” status at the United Nations. 

Countrywatch.com has included Serbia and Montenegro on its list of countries because although it is not recognized by the United States, it is a member of the United Nations.  Currently, the editors of CountryWatch.com are vigilant of other similar scenarios, such as East Timor, which has declared its independent and sovereign status (from Indonesia).  At the moment, East Timor is in the process of making its full transition to the status of a sovereign state, and once this task is completed, CountryWatch.com anticipates another country will be added to its list of countries covered. 

Other territories, such as Puerto Rico (United States jurisdiction) and Taiwan have met many requirements of independent nation state status (see section on State or Nation), but continue to be treated as dependencies of sorts.  In fact, until 1971, Taiwan was a member of the United Nations, but since then has been replaced by China in this regard. 

At CountryWatch.com, places such as Puerto Rico are treated in special sections or appendices in the United States Country Review, while Taiwan, Hong Kong and Macao are each treated in a similar manner within the China Country Review.  Countrywatch.com recognizes the imprecise and politicized nature of such treatments, and as in the case of East Timor, the editors are vigilant about staying abreast of political developments, should sovereign status become a reality at some point in the future. 

 

Below is a list of Independent and Sovereign States of the World

Total count of Independent States:   190, plus Serbia and Montenegro
*  Diplomatic relations with the United States
+ Member of United Nations
!   New change, since previous list

Short-form name

Long-form name

FIPS Code
(see note 2)

Capital

Afghanistan *+

Islamic State of Afghanistan

AF

Kabul

Albania *+

Republic of Albania

AL

Tirana

Algeria *+

Democratic and Popular Republic of Algeria

AG

Algiers

Andorra *+

Principality of Andorra

AN

Andorra la Vella

Angola *+

Republic of Angola

AO

Luanda

Antigua and
Barbuda *+

(no long-form name)

AC

Saint John's

Argentina *+

Argentine Republic

AR

Buenos Aires

Armenia *+

Republic of Armenia

AM

Yerevan

Australia *+

Commonwealth of Australia

AS

Canberra

Austria *+

Republic of Austria

AU

Vienna

Azerbaijan *+

Azerbaijani Republic

AJ

Baku

Bahamas, The *+

Commonwealth
of The Bahamas

BF

Nassau

Bahrain *+

State of Bahrain

BA

Manama

Bangladesh *+

People's Republic
of Bangladesh

BG

Dhaka

Barbados *+

(no long-form name)

BB

Bridgetown

Belarus *+

Republic of Belarus

BO

Minsk

Belgium *+

Kingdom of Belgium

BE

Brussels

Belize *+

(no long-form name)

BH

Belmopan

Benin *+

Republic of Benin

BN

Porto-Novo

Bhutan +

Kingdom of Bhutan

BT

Thimphu

Bolivia *+

Republic of Bolivia

BL

La Paz (administrative)
Sucre (legislative/judiciary)

Bosnia and
Herzegovina *+

(no long-form name)

BK

Sarajevo

Botswana *+

Republic of Botswana

BC

Gaborone

Brazil *+

Federative Republic of Brazil

BR

Brasília

Brunei *+

Negara Brunei Darussalam

BX

Bandar Seri Begawan

Bulgaria *+

Republic of Bulgaria

BU

Sofia

Burkina Faso *+

Burkina Faso

UV

Ouagadougou

Burma *+

Union of Burma

BM

Rangoon

Burundi *+

Republic of Burundi

BY

Bujumbura

Cambodia *+

Kingdom of Cambodia

CB

Phnom Penh

Cameroon *+

Republic of Cameroon

CM

Yaoundé

Canada *+

(no long-form name)

CA

Ottawa

Cape Verde *+

Republic of Cape Verde

CV

Praia

Central
African Republic *+

Central African Republic

CT

Bangui

Chad *+

Republic of Chad

CD

N'Djamena

Chile *+

Republic of Chile

CI

Santiago

China *+ (see note 3)

People's Republic of China

CH

Beijing

Colombia *+

Republic of Colombia

CO

Bogotá

Comoros *+

Federal Islamic Republic
of the Comoros

CN

Moroni

Congo (Brazzaville) *+
(see note 4)

Republic of the Congo

CF

Brazzaville

Congo (Kinshasa) *+
(see note 4)

Democratic Republic
of the Congo

CG

Kinshasa

Costa Rica *+

Republic of Costa Rica

CS

San José

Côte d'Ivoire *+

Republic of Côte d'Ivoire

IV

Yamoussoukro

Croatia *+

Republic of Croatia

HR

Zagreb

Cuba +

Republic of Cuba

CU

Havana

Cyprus *+

Republic of Cyprus

CY

Nicosia

Czech Republic *+

Czech Republic

EZ

Prague

Denmark *+

Kingdom of Denmark

DA

Copenhagen

Djibouti *+

Republic of Djibouti

DJ

Djibouti

Dominica *+

Commonwealth of Dominica

DO

Roseau

Dominican Republic *+

Dominican Republic

DR

Santo Domingo

Ecuador *+

Republic of Ecuador

EC

Quito

Egypt *+

Arab Republic of Egypt

EG

Cairo

El Salvador *+

Republic of El Salvador

ES

San Salvador

Equatorial Guinea *+

Republic of Equatorial Guinea

EK

Malabo

Eritrea *+

State of Eritrea

ER

Asmara

Estonia *+

Republic of Estonia

EN

Tallinn

Ethiopia *+

Federal Democratic
Republic of Ethiopia

ET

Addis Ababa

Fiji *+

Republic of the
Fiji Islands

FJ

Suva

Finland *+

Republic of Finland

FI

Helsinki

France *+

French Republic

FR

Paris

Gabon *+

Gabonese Republic

GB

Libreville

Gambia, The *+

Republic of The Gambia

GA

Banjul

Georgia *+

(no long-form name)

GG

T'bilisi

Germany *+

Federal Republic of Germany

GM

Berlin

Ghana *+

Republic of Ghana

GH

Accra

Greece *+

Hellenic Republic

GR

Athens

Grenada *+

(no long-form name)

GJ

Saint George's

Guatemala *+

Republic of Guatemala

GT

Guatemala

Guinea *+

Republic of Guinea

GV

Conakry

Guinea-Bissau *+

Republic of Guinea-Bissau

PU

Bissau

Guyana *+

Co-operative
Republic of Guyana

GY

Georgetown

Haiti *+

Republic of Haiti

HA

Port-au-Prince

Holy See *

Holy See

VT

Vatican City

Honduras *+

Republic of Honduras

HO

Tegucigalpa

Hungary *+

Republic of Hungary

HU

Budapest

Iceland *+

Republic of Iceland

IC

Reykjavík

India *+

Republic of India

IN

New Delhi

Indonesia *+

Republic of Indonesia

ID

Jakarta

Iran +

Islamic Republic of Iran

IR

Tehran

Iraq +

Republic of Iraq

IZ

Baghdad

Ireland *+

(no long-form name)

EI

Dublin

Israel *+

State of Israel

IS

(see note 5)

Italy *+

Italian Republic

IT

Rome

Jamaica *+

(no long-form name)

JM

Kingston

Japan *+

(no long-form name)

JA

Tokyo

Jordan *+

Hashemite
Kingdom of Jordan

JO

Amman

Kazakhstan *+

Republic of Kazakhstan

KZ

Astana

Kenya *+

Republic of Kenya

KE

Nairobi

Kiribati *+

Republic of Kiribati

KR

Tarawa

Korea, North +

Democratic People's Republic of Korea

KN

P'yongyang

Korea, South *+

Republic of Korea

KS

Seoul

Kuwait *+

State of Kuwait

KU

Kuwait

Kyrgyzstan *+

Kyrgyz Republic

KG

Bishkek

Laos *+

Lao People's
Democratic Republic

LA

Vientiane

Latvia *+

Republic of Latvia

LG

Riga

Lebanon *+

Lebanese Republic

LE

Beirut

Lesotho *+

Kingdom of Lesotho

LT

Maseru

Liberia *+

Republic of Liberia

LI

Monrovia

Libya *+

Socialist People's
Libyan Arab Jamahiriya

LY

Tripoli

Liechtenstein *+

Principality of Liechtenstein

LS

Vaduz

Lithuania *+

Republic of Lithuania

LH

Vilnius

Luxembourg *+

Grand Duchy of Luxembourg

LU

Luxembourg

Macedonia, The Former Yugoslav Republic of *+

The Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia

MK

Skopje

Madagascar *+

Republic of Madagascar

MA

Antananarivo

Malawi *+

Republic of Malawi

MI

Lilongwe

Malaysia *+

(no long-form name)

MY

Kuala Lumpur

Maldives *+

Republic of Maldives

MV

Male

Mali *+

Republic of Mali

ML

Bamako

Malta *+

(no long-form name)

MT

Valletta

Marshall Islands *+

Republic of the
Marshall Islands

RM

Majuro

Mauritania *+

Islamic Republic
of Mauritania

MR

Nouakchott

Mauritius *+

Republic of Mauritius

MP

Port Louis

Mexico *+

United Mexican States

MX

Mexico

Micronesia,
Federated States of *+

Federated States
of Micronesia

FM

Palikir

Moldova *+

Republic of Moldova

MD

Chisinau

Monaco *+

Principality of Monaco

MN

Monaco

Mongolia *+

(no long-form name)

MG

Ulaanbaatar

Morocco *+

Kingdom of Morocco

MO

Rabat

Mozambique *+

Republic of Mozambique

MZ

Maputo

Namibia *+

Republic of Namibia

WA

Windhoek

Nauru *+

Republic of Nauru

NR

Yaren District
(no capital city)

Nepal *+

Kingdom of Nepal

NP

Kathmandu

Netherlands *+

Kingdom of the Netherlands

NL

Amsterdam
The Hague (seat of gov't)

New Zealand *+

(no long-form name)

NZ

Wellington

Nicaragua *+

Republic of Nicaragua

NU

Managua

Niger *+

Republic of Niger

NG

Niamey

Nigeria *+

Federal Republic of Nigeria

NI

Abuja

Norway *+

Kingdom of Norway

NO

Oslo

Oman *+

Sultanate of Oman

MU

Muscat

Pakistan *+

Islamic Republic of Pakistan

PK

Islamabad

Palau *+

Republic of Palau

PS

Koror

Panama *+

Republic of Panama

PM

Panama

Papua New Guinea *+

Independent State
of Papua New Guinea

PP

Port Moresby

Paraguay *+

Republic of Paraguay

PA

Asunción

Peru *+

Republic of Peru

PE

Lima

Philippines *+

Republic of the Philippines

RP

Manila

Poland *+

Republic of Poland

PL

Warsaw

Portugal *+

Portuguese Republic

PO

Lisbon

Qatar *+

State of Qatar

QA

Doha

Romania *+

(no long-form name)

RO

Bucharest

Russia *+

Russian Federation

RS

Moscow

Rwanda *+

Rwandese Republic

RW

Kigali

Saint Kitts and Nevis *+

Federation of Saint
Kitts and Nevis

SC

Basseterre

Saint Lucia *+

(no long-form name)

ST

Castries

Saint Vincent and
the Grenadines *+

(no long-form name)

VC

Kingstown

Samoa *+

Independent State of Samoa

WS

Apia

San Marino *+

Republic of San Marino

SM

San Marino

Sao Tome and Principe *+

Democratic Republic of
Sao Tome and Principe

TP

São Tomé

Saudi Arabia *+

Kingdom of Saudi Arabia

SA

Riyadh

Senegal *+

Republic of Senegal

SG

Dakar

Seychelles *+

Republic of Seychelles

SE

Victoria

Sierra Leone *+

Republic of Sierra Leone

SL

Freetown

Singapore *+

Republic of Singapore

SN

Singapore

Slovakia *+

Slovak Republic

LO

Bratislava

Slovenia *+

Republic of Slovenia

SI

Ljubljana

Solomon Islands *+

(no long-form name)

BP

Honiara

Somalia *+

(no long-form name)

SO

Mogadishu

South Africa *+

Republic of South Africa

SF

Pretoria (administrative)
Cape Town (legislative)
Bloemfontein (judiciary)

Spain *+

Kingdom of Spain

SP

Madrid

Sri Lanka *+

Democratic Socialist
Republic of Sri Lanka

CE

Colombo

Sudan *+

Republic of the Sudan

SU

Khartoum

Suriname *+

Republic of Suriname

NS

Paramaribo

Swaziland *+

Kingdom of Swaziland

WZ

Mbabane (administrative)
Lobamba (legislative)

Sweden *+

Kingdom of Sweden

SW

Stockholm

Switzerland *

Swiss Confederation

SZ

Bern

Syria *+

Syrian Arab Republic

SY

Damascus

Tajikistan *+

Republic of Tajikistan

TI

Dushanbe

Tanzania *+

United Republic of Tanzania

TZ

Dar es Salaam
Dodoma (legislative)

Thailand *+

Kingdom of Thailand

TH

Bangkok

Togo *+

Togolese Republic

TO

Lomé

Tonga *+

Kingdom of Tonga

TN

Nuku'alofa

Trinidad and Tobago *+

Republic of
Trinidad and Tobago

TD

Port-of-Spain

Tunisia *+

Republic of Tunisia

TS

Tunis

Turkey *+

Republic of Turkey

TU

Ankara

Turkmenistan *+

(no long-form name)

TX

Ashgabat

Tuvalu *

(no long-form name)

TV

Funafuti

Uganda *+

Republic of Uganda

UG

Kampala

Ukraine *+

(no long-form name)

UP

Kiev

United Arab Emirates *+

United Arab Emirates

TC

Abu Dhabi

United Kingdom *+

United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland

UK

London

United States +

United States of America

US

Washington, DC

Uruguay *+

Oriental Republic of Uruguay

UY

Montevideo

Uzbekistan *+

Republic of Uzbekistan

UZ

Tashkent

Vanuatu *+

Republic of Vanuatu

NH

Port-Vila

Venezuela *+

!Bolivarian Republic of Venezuela

VE

Caracas

Vietnam *+

Socialist Republic of Vietnam

VM

Hanoi

Yemen *+

Republic of Yemen

YM

Sanaa

Zambia *+

Republic of Zambia

ZA

Lusaka

Zimbabwe *+

Republic of Zimbabwe

ZI

Harare

OTHER

Short-form name

Long-form name

FIPS Code (see note 2)

Capital

Serbia and Montenegro
(see note 6 )

(no long-form name)

SR (Serbia)
MW (Montenegro)

Belgrade
Podgorica


 

NOTES

Note 1:   In this listing, the term "independent state" refers to a people politically organized
into a sovereign state with a definite territory recognized as independent by the US.

Note 2:   Federal Information Processing Standard (FIPS) 10-4 codes.

Note 3:   With the establishment of diplomatic relations with China on January 1, 1979, the
US Government recognized the People's Republic of China as the sole legal government
of China and acknowledged the Chinese position that there is only one China and that
Taiwan is part of China.

Note 4:   "Congo" is the official short-form name for both the Republic of the Congo and the
Democratic Republic of the Congo.   To distinguish one from the other, the U.S. Department
of State adds the capital in parentheses.   This practice is unofficial and provisional.

Note 5:   In 1950 the Israel Parliament proclaimed Jerusalem as the capital.   The US, like
most other countries that have embassies in Israel, maintains its Embassy in Tel Aviv.

Note 6:   The US view is that the Socialist Federal Republic of Yugoslavia has dissolved
and no successor state represents its continuation.   Serbia and Montenegro have asserted
the formation of a joint independent state, but this entity has not been formally recognized
as a state by the US.

Source:   Office of The Geographer and Global Issues, Bureau of Intelligence and Research,
U.S. Department of State, Washington, D.C.

 



[1] CountryWatch.com recognizes and understands that the United States Department of State’s (DOS) recognition of a country is reflective of the particular political agenda of the United States and its allies.  Use of the DOS listing is not intended to be an explicit endorsement of any country’s political priorities and CountryWatch.com encourages users to consider the broad range of parameters included in designating any place or territory to be a sovereign country.