Thematic Map > Literacy - World

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Definition: This entry includes a definition of literacy and Census Bureau percentages for the total population, males, and females. There are no universal definitions and standards of literacy. Unless otherwise specified, all rates are based on the most common definition - the ability to read and write at a specified age. Detailing the standards that individual countries use to assess the ability to read and write is beyond the scope of the Factbook. Information on literacy, while not a perfect measure of educational results, is probably the most easily available and valid for international comparisons. Low levels of literacy, and education in general, can impede the economic development of a country in the current rapidly changing, technology-driven world.

Source: CIA World Factbook - Unless otherwise noted, information in this page is accurate as of January 1, 2012

See also: Literacy bar chart

 

Country NameLiteracy (%)Year of Estimate
Finland1002000
Greenland1002001
Luxembourg1002000
Latvia1002010
Cuba1002002
Estonia1002010
Azerbaijan1002010
Barbados1002002
Georgia1002010
Lithuania1002010
Slovenia1002010
Tajikistan1002010
Ukraine1002010
Samoa1002003
Slovakia1002004
Russia1002010
Armenia1002010
Belarus1002009
Poland1002010
Kazakhstan1001999
Uzbekistan992003
United Kingdom992003
United States992003
Sweden992003
Switzerland992003
Korea, North991991
Hungary992010
Iceland992003
Japan992002
New Zealand992003
Monaco992003
Netherlands992003
Canada992003
Australia992003
Belgium992003
Czech Republic992003
France992003
Germany992003
Ireland992003
Denmark992003
Tonga991999
Turkmenistan991999
Croatia992010
Kyrgyzstan991999
Albania992001
Trinidad and Tobago992003
Moldova992010
Montenegro982010
Italy982001
Bulgaria982011
Cayman Islands981970
Uruguay982003
Bosnia and Herzegovina982010
Korea, South982002
Serbia982010
Saint Kitts and Nevis982003
Spain982010
Romania982010
Mongolia972010
Macedonia972010
Argentina972001
Israel972004
Qatar962010
New Caledonia961996
Taiwan962003
Saint Vincent and the Grenadines961970
Grenada962003
Greece962001
Chile962002
Bahamas, The962003
Portugal952010
Costa Rica952000
Bahrain952010
Puerto Rico942002
Vietnam942002
Dominica942003
Paraguay942003
Equatorial Guinea942010
Fiji942003
Hong Kong942002
Kuwait932005
Venezuela932001
Peru932007
Malta932005
Brunei932001
Philippines932000
Jordan932010
Thailand932000
Singapore932000
China922007
Palau921980
Panama922000
Guyana922002
Seychelles922002
Macau912001
Sri Lanka912010
Ecuador912001
Zimbabwe912003
Colombia902005
Indonesia902004
Saint Lucia902001
Burma902006
Lesotho902010
Suriname902004
Libya892010
Namibia892010
Malaysia892000
Brazil892004
Mauritius892010
Gabon882010
Jamaica882003
Kenya872010
Lebanon872003
Turkey872004
Dominican Republic872002
Bolivia872001
Saudi Arabia872010
South Africa862003
Mexico862005
Antigua and Barbuda862003
Sao Tome and Principe852001
Botswana852010
Cape Verde842010
Congo, Republic of the842003
Swaziland822003
Oman812003
El Salvador812007
Zambia812003
Honduras802001
Syria802004
Iraq782010
United Arab Emirates782003
Iran772002
Belize772000
Cameroon762001
Comoros752010
Malawi752010
Tunisia742004
Vanuatu741999
Cambodia742004
Laos732005
Egypt722010
Rwanda712010
Angola702010
Algeria702002
Tanzania692002
Guatemala692002
Djibouti682003
Eritrea682010
Nicaragua682003
Ghana672010
Burundi672010
Congo, Democratic Republic of the672010
Uganda672002
Madagascar652009
Yemen642010
Nigeria612010
Sudan612003
India612001
Togo612003
Liberia612010
Nepal602010
East Timor592002
Mauritania582010
Papua New Guinea572000
Bangladesh572010
Cote d'Ivoire562010
Morocco562009
Mozambique562010
Central African Republic562010
Pakistan552009
Guinea-Bissau542010
Haiti532003
Gambia, The502010
Bhutan472003
Ethiopia432003
Benin422010
Guinea412010
Senegal392002
Somalia382001
Sierra Leone352004
Chad352010
Mali312010
Niger292005
Afghanistan282000
Burkina Faso222003
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