Are you curious about the world’s poorest countries? Do you want to know which countries are struggling the most financially? If so, this blog post is for you. We’ve compiled a list of the 10 poorest countries in the world in 2022 and what their current economic condition looks like. Read on to learn more!
Burundi – $270 GDP Per Capita
Burundi is the poorest country in the world according to gross domestic product (GDP) per capita, with $292 in 2022, and a least developed country, according to the World Bank. This makes it one of the 10 poorest countries in the world. Despite having a relatively small population of 11.7 million, Burundi’s GDP per capita is still a fraction of that of Luxembourg’s, which stands at $136,700. The Burundian government is taking steps to try and improve the economic situation in the country, such as scaling up public investment and loosening import restrictions.
Guinea has always been one of the poorest countries in the world and this is still true in 2022. The government has been making efforts to improve the country’s economy and stability, resulting in some progress being made. In 2020, Guinea’s GDP per capita was estimated to be $360, which is still far below the average of $5,000 for low-income countries. World Bank-supported projects in Guinea are focused on community development and infrastructure, and they have been having positive impacts on people’s lives. With a population of around 13.49 million, Guinea needs to continue to make progress if it is going to come out of poverty.
Madagascar, the fifth-largest island in the world, has a population of over 26 million people, 97% of whom are living in chronic malnutrition. The country’s Human Capital Index ranks among the lowest worldwide, and its annual population growth rate is among the highest. This has contributed to the nation’s ranking as one of the poorest countries in the world, with a Gross Domestic Product (GDP) per capita of $270. The rural poor depend largely on subsistence farming and fishing for their income, making them particularly vulnerable to poverty in a situation of limited economic opportunity. The United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) has implemented a number of initiatives to combat poverty in Madagascar, including providing access to financial services, nutrition programmes and education.
Mozambique is one of the poorest countries in the world, with a GDP per capita of USD 303 in 2026 according to the World Bank. The country is endowed with ample resources of arable land, water, and minerals. However, many of these resources remain largely untapped due to a lack of infrastructure and capital. Mozambique’s 2022 Economic Update notes growth is expected to accelerate in the coming years, but it will still remain among the world’s poorest countries. In the World Bank’s 2020 report on the Ease of Doing Business, Mozambique lowered its ranking to 138 out of 190 from the previous year, when it had been at 139. Despite its poverty and development challenges, Mozambique has made some progress and continues to strive towards improving its economy.
Malawi is the second poorest country in the world, with a GDP per capita of USD 303 in 2022. Despite the many challenges that it faces, Malawi has been making significant strides in economic and structural reforms to sustain economic growth. In fact, the Global Multidimensional Poverty Index (MPI) reported that Malawi has achieved remarkable progress towards reducing poverty from 57.3% in 2006 to 37.6% in 2019. The Development Initiative in Global MPI Country Briefing 2022 also found that poverty among children is decreasing steadily, from 45.4% in 2006 to 25.7% in 2019. This is a clear indication of the positive strides being made in Malawi, and it is hoped that the country will continue to make progress and move up the rankings of the world’s poorest countries.
Niger is a landlocked country in West Africa that has a population of about 24 million people. It has the seventh lowest GDP per capita in the world according to the World Bank, at $567.7. Niger is a country that is highly dependent on agriculture, with over 80 percent of its population employed in the sector, mostly in subsistence farming. It also has a high population growth rate, with one of the youngest populations in the world and an average life expectancy of just 60 years. Unfortunately, this high population growth rate has not been matched by economic growth and development due to a lack of resources and infrastructure. As a result, Niger remains one of the poorest countries in the world.
Somalia has recently qualified for the Heavily Indebted Poor Countries (HIPC) initiative of the International Monetary Fund (IMF) and World Bank. The New Somali Government, which was established in June 2022, marked an increase in the World Bank’s commitment to the country and its economic recovery. This is a positive step forward for Somalia and its people, who are facing extreme levels of poverty and deprivation. It is hoped that with the assistance of the IMF and World Bank, Somalia can work towards a stronger economic future.
Democratic Republic of the Congo
With a GDP per capita of $875, the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC) is one of the five poorest nations in the world. The DRC has struggled for stability and economic prosperity for many years, but recent developments have shown some improvement. The International Monetary Fund (IMF) and World Bank have made policy reform recommendations, but they remain largely unenforced. Despite this, economic growth is estimated to reach 6.1% in 2022, continuing the positive momentum from 2021. Cordaid, a Dutch relief organization, is working hard to promote stability and encourage governments to take responsibility in the DRC. With their help, and with the cooperation of other international organizations, the DRC could soon be on its way to becoming a prosperous nation.
South Sudan is one of the poorest countries in the world, with a GDP per capita of 441 USD in 2026. The United Nations Development Index ranks Niger as the poorest country on earth, and South Sudan is one of the 46 economies designated by the UN as the least developed countries. To make matters worse, South Sudan is currently experiencing a severe food insecurity at the peak of the 2022 lean season, estimated by the UN. Despite gaining independence from Sudan in 2011 with high hopes for the future, South Sudan descended into turmoil in December 2013 with a rift between President Salva Kiir Mayardit and the former vice president Riek Machar. As a result, gender relations in South Sudan are shaped by the social and economic realities of being one of the world’s poorest countries and by decades of civil war.