Top 5 poorest countries in Asia based on GDP


GDP per capita is a useful indicator of a country’s overall economic health, and it can help to identify countries that may need additional assistance to reduce poverty and improve living standards.

Here are the 5 poorest countries in Asia based on GDP per capita in 2023, according to the World Bank:

  1. Bhutan – $2.54 billion
  2. Timor-Leste – $3.16 billion
  3. Kyrgyzstan – $10.93 billion
  4. Tajikistan – $13.12 billion
  5. Afghanistan – $14.58 billion

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1. Bhutan

In 2023, the GDP of the country stands at $2.54 billion (nominal) or $10.90 billion (PPP). The GDP per capita is reported as $2,976.90 (nominal) or $10,907.29 (PPP). It is important to note that these figures reflect a decline compared to the GDP of $2.70 billion (nominal) or $11.49 billion (PPP) recorded in 2021.

Bhutan’s GDP has witnessed a decline attributed to several factors, including the adverse impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic, the worldwide economic slowdown, and the country’s heavy reliance on tourism. These combined elements have contributed to the economic downturn experienced by Bhutan in recent times.

2. Timor-Leste

As of July 2023, The GDP of the country stands at $3.16 billion in nominal terms or $17.31 billion in terms of purchasing power parity (PPP). When considering per capita figures, the GDP per capita amounts to $1,644 in nominal terms or $7,131 in PPP.

However, these figures indicate a decline compared to the GDP of $3.42 billion (nominal) or $18.43 billion (PPP) recorded in 2021. This downward trend in economic performance raises concerns about the country’s economic stability and growth prospects.

3. Kyrgyzstan

The GDP of the country is reported as $10.93 billion (nominal) or $51.9 billion (PPP). The GDP per capita stands at $1,211 (nominal) or $5,192 (PPP) in 2023. It is important to note that these figures indicate a decline compared to the GDP of $11.48 billion (nominal) or $54.1 billion (PPP) recorded in 2021.

The decrease in Kyrgyzstan’s GDP can be attributed to various factors, with one significant factor being the persistent economic slowdown experienced by its primary trading partner, Russia.

4. Tajikistan

The current GDP of the country is reported to be $13.12 billion (nominal) or $45.9 billion (PPP). The GDP per capita stands at $1,131 (nominal) or $4,589 (PPP). It is worth noting that these figures indicate a decline compared to the GDP of $14.18 billion (nominal) or $49.2 billion (PPP) recorded in the previous year (2021).

Tajikistan’s GDP has experienced a decline, which can be attributed to various factors, including the prevailing economic slowdown in Russia. As Russia serves as Tajikistan’s primary trading partner, any slowdown in the Russian economy can have a significant impact on Tajikistan’s own economic performance.

5. Afghanistan

As of July 2023, the estimated gross domestic product (GDP) of Afghanistan is $14.58 billion (nominal) or $67.13 billion (PPP). This represents a decline from the GDP of $19.55 billion (nominal) or $84.46 billion (PPP) in 2021.

Afghanistan, a landlocked nation, is renowned for its rugged mountains, expansive deserts, and dramatic gorges. Unfortunately, it is also recognized as one of the poorest countries in Asia, with nearly 40 percent of its population living below the poverty line.

The decline in Afghanistan’s GDP is due to a number of factors, including the ongoing conflict in the country, the COVID-19 pandemic, and the withdrawal of foreign troops in 2021.

See also: Top 5 countries with highest GDP in Europe

Other poorest countries in Asia:

  • Laos – $15.72 billion
  • Mongolia – $16.81 billion
  • Yemen – $20.73 billion
  • Syria – $22.4 billion
  • Nepal – $37.73 billion
  • Myanmar – $59.36 billion
  • Sri Lanka – $74.4 billion
  • Pakistan – $280.1 billion
  • Bangladesh – $420.52 billion

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