Agricultural land (sq. km) - Country Ranking

Definition: Agricultural land refers to the share of land area that is arable, under permanent crops, and under permanent pastures. Arable land includes land defined by the FAO as land under temporary crops (double-cropped areas are counted once), temporary meadows for mowing or for pasture, land under market or kitchen gardens, and land temporarily fallow. Land abandoned as a result of shifting cultivation is excluded. Land under permanent crops is land cultivated with crops that occupy the land for long periods and need not be replanted after each harvest, such as cocoa, coffee, and rubber. This category includes land under flowering shrubs, fruit trees, nut trees, and vines, but excludes land under trees grown for wood or timber. Permanent pasture is land used for five or more years for forage, including natural and cultivated crops.

Source: Food and Agriculture Organization, electronic files and web site.

See also: Thematic map, Time series comparison

Find indicator:
Rank Country Value Year
1 China 5,278,330.00 2015
2 United States 4,058,625.00 2015
3 Australia 3,659,130.00 2015
4 Brazil 2,825,890.00 2015
5 Russia 2,177,218.00 2015
6 Kazakhstan 2,169,920.00 2015
7 India 1,797,210.00 2015
8 Saudi Arabia 1,736,472.00 2015
9 Argentina 1,487,000.00 2015
10 Mongolia 1,129,035.00 2015
11 Mexico 1,067,050.00 2015
12 South Africa 968,410.00 2015
13 Nigeria 708,000.00 2015
14 Sudan 681,861.60 2015
15 Canada 626,562.00 2015
16 Angola 591,900.00 2015
17 Indonesia 570,000.00 2015
18 Mozambique 499,500.00 2015
19 Chad 499,350.00 2015
20 Iran 459,532.00 2015
21 Niger 456,820.00 2015
22 Colombia 446,656.00 2015
23 Somalia 441,250.00 2015
24 Algeria 414,564.00 2015
25 Madagascar 414,150.00 2015
26 Ukraine 412,748.00 2015
27 Mali 412,010.00 2015
28 Mauritania 397,110.00 2015
29 Tanzania 396,500.00 2015
30 Namibia 388,090.00 2015
31 Turkey 385,460.00 2015
32 Afghanistan 379,100.00 2015
33 Bolivia 377,045.00 2015
34 Ethiopia 362,590.00 2015
35 Pakistan 362,520.00 2015
36 Turkmenistan 338,380.00 2015
37 Morocco 305,915.00 2015
38 France 287,269.00 2015
39 Kenya 276,300.00 2015
40 Uzbekistan 267,700.00 2015
41 Spain 262,660.00 2015
42 Dem. Rep. Congo 262,000.00 2015
43 Botswana 260,010.00 2015
44 Peru 243,306.00 2015
45 Zambia 238,360.00 2015
46 Yemen 235,460.00 2015
47 Thailand 221,100.00 2015
48 Paraguay 218,850.00 2015
49 Venezuela 216,000.00 2015
50 Côte d'Ivoire 206,000.00 2015
51 United Kingdom 171,380.00 2015
52 Germany 167,310.00 2015
53 Zimbabwe 162,000.00 2015
54 Chile 157,850.00 2015
55 Ghana 157,000.00 2015
56 Libya 153,500.00 2015
57 Guinea 145,000.00 2015
58 Uruguay 144,496.00 2015
59 Uganda 144,150.00 2015
60 Poland 143,710.00 2015
61 Syrian Arab Republic 139,210.00 2015
62 Romania 138,350.00 2015
63 Italy 129,450.00 2015
64 Myanmar 127,350.00 2015
65 Philippines 124,400.00 2015
66 Burkina Faso 121,000.00 2015
67 Vietnam 117,100.00 2015
68 New Zealand 111,160.00 2015
69 Congo 106,270.00 2015
70 Kyrgyz Republic 105,571.00 2015
71 Tunisia 100,730.00 2015
72 Cameroon 97,500.00 2015
73 Iraq 92,690.00 2015
74 Bangladesh 91,942.10 2015
75 Senegal 88,680.00 2015
76 Belarus 85,820.00 2015
77 Malaysia 78,390.00 2015
78 Greece 77,830.00 2015
79 Eritrea 75,920.00 2015
80 Cuba 62,403.00 2015
81 Malawi 57,900.00 2015
82 Ecuador 57,884.00 2015
83 Cambodia 54,550.00 2015
84 Hungary 53,470.00 2015
85 Gabon 51,600.00 2015
86 Central African Republic 50,800.00 2015
87 Nicaragua 50,650.00 2015
88 Bulgaria 50,119.00 2015
89 Azerbaijan 47,698.00 2015
90 Tajikistan 47,450.00 2015
91 Japan 44,960.00 2015
92 Ireland 44,300.00 2015
93 Czech Republic 42,130.00 2015
94 Nepal 41,210.00 2015
95 Sierra Leone 39,490.00 2015
96 Egypt 38,201.50 2015
97 Togo 38,200.00 2015
98 Guatemala 37,938.00 2015
99 Benin 37,500.00 2015
100 Portugal 36,999.70 2015
101 Serbia 34,685.00 2015
102 Honduras 32,350.00 2015
103 Sweden 30,398.00 2015
104 Lithuania 30,060.00 2015
105 Sri Lanka 27,400.00 2015
106 Austria 27,184.50 2015
107 Liberia 27,000.00 2015
108 Dem. People's Rep. Korea 26,300.00 2015
109 Denmark 26,110.00 2015
110 Georgia 25,484.00 2015
111 Moldova 24,589.00 2015
112 Lao PDR 23,690.00 2015
113 Dominican Republic 23,520.00 2015
114 Lesotho 22,773.00 2015
115 Finland 22,734.00 2015
116 Panama 22,570.00 2015
117 Bosnia and Herzegovina 21,830.00 2015
118 Burundi 20,320.00 2015
119 Slovak Republic 19,216.00 2015
120 Latvia 18,845.00 2015
121 Iceland 18,720.00 2015
122 Haiti 18,400.00 2015
123 Netherlands 18,370.00 2015
124 Rwanda 18,117.00 2015
125 Costa Rica 18,110.00 2015
126 Korea 17,360.00 2015
127 Djibouti 17,020.00 2015
128 Guyana 16,800.00 2015
129 Armenia 16,764.30 2015
130 Guinea-Bissau 16,300.00 2015
131 El Salvador 16,020.00 2015
132 Croatia 15,376.00 2015
133 Switzerland 15,088.00 2015
134 Oman 14,688.00 2015
135 Belgium 13,280.00 2015
136 Macedonia 12,630.00 2015
137 Swaziland 12,220.00 2015
138 Papua New Guinea 11,900.00 2015
139 Albania 11,743.00 2015
140 Jordan 10,566.00 2015
141 Estonia 9,936.00 2015
142 Norway 9,861.00 2015
143 Lebanon 6,580.00 2015
144 Slovenia 6,166.30 2015
145 The Gambia 6,050.00 2015
146 Israel 5,339.00 2015
147 Bhutan 5,256.00 2015
148 Jamaica 4,440.00 2015
149 Fiji 4,250.00 2015
150 United Arab Emirates 3,823.00 2015
151 Timor-Leste 3,800.00 2015
152 Equatorial Guinea 2,840.00 2015
153 Greenland 2,359.00 2015
154 Montenegro 2,314.00 2015
155 Puerto Rico 1,977.00 2015
156 Vanuatu 1,870.00 2015
157 New Caledonia 1,842.40 2015
158 Belize 1,600.00 2015
159 Kuwait 1,494.00 2015
160 Comoros 1,330.00 2015
161 Luxembourg 1,312.70 2015
162 Cyprus 1,272.00 2015
163 Solomon Islands 1,080.00 2015
164 Suriname 882.00 2015
165 Mauritius 850.00 2015
166 Cabo Verde 790.00 2015
167 Qatar 656.00 2015
168 Trinidad and Tobago 540.00 2015
169 São Tomé and Principe 487.00 2015
170 Samoa 350.00 2015
171 Kiribati 340.00 2015
172 Tonga 330.00 2015
173 Dominica 250.00 2015
174 Andorra 188.10 2015
175 Brunei 144.00 2015
176 The Bahamas 140.00 2015
176 Barbados 140.00 2015
178 St. Lucia 106.00 2015
179 Malta 102.30 2015
180 St. Vincent and the Grenadines 100.00 2015
181 Antigua and Barbuda 90.00 2015
182 Bahrain 86.00 2015
183 Grenada 80.00 2015
184 St. Kitts and Nevis 60.00 2015
185 Liechtenstein 51.60 2015
186 Hong Kong SAR, China 51.00 2015
187 Palau 50.00 2015
188 Cayman Islands 27.00 2015
189 Tuvalu 18.00 2015
190 Seychelles 15.50 2015
191 San Marino 10.00 2015
192 Singapore 6.60 2015
193 Nauru 4.00 2015

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Development Relevance: Agricultural land covers more than one-third of the world's land area. In many industrialized countries, agricultural land is subject to zoning regulations. In the context of zoning, agricultural land (or more properly agriculturally zoned land) refers to plots that may be used for agricultural activities, regardless of the physical type or quality of land. FAO's agricultural land data contains a wide range of information on variables that are significant for understanding the structure of a country's agricultural sector; making economic plans and policies for food security; and deriving environmental indicators, including those related to investment in agriculture and data on gross crop area and net crop area which are useful for policy formulation and monitoring. Agriculture is still a major sector in many economies, and agricultural activities provide developing countries with food and revenue. But agricultural activities also can degrade natural resources. Poor farming practices can cause soil erosion and loss of soil fertility. Efforts to increase productivity by using chemical fertilizers, pesticides, and intensive irrigation have environmental costs and health impacts. Excessive use of chemical fertilizers can alter the chemistry of soil. Pesticide poisoning is common in developing countries. And salinization of irrigated land diminishes soil fertility. Thus, inappropriate use of inputs for agricultural production has far-reaching effects. There is no single correct mix of inputs to the agricultural land, as it is dependent on local climate, land quality, and economic development; appropriate levels and application rates vary by country and over time and depend on the type of crops, the climate and soils, and the production process used.

Limitations and Exceptions: The data are collected by the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO) through annual questionnaires. The FAO tries to impose standard definitions and reporting methods, but complete consistency across countries and over time is not possible. Thus, data on agricultural land in different climates may not be comparable. For example, permanent pastures are quite different in nature and intensity in African countries and dry Middle Eastern countries. Data on agricultural employment, in particular, should be used with caution. In many countries much agricultural employment is informal and unrecorded, including substantial work performed by women and children. To address some of these concerns, this indicator is heavily footnoted in the database in sources, definition, and coverage. The secondary sources cover official country data from websites of national ministries, national publications and related country data reported by various international organizations.

Statistical Concept and Methodology: Agricultural land constitutes only a part of any country's total area, which can include areas not suitable for agriculture, such as forests, mountains, and inland water bodies. Three components of the agricultural land are a) arable land - land defined by the FAO as land under temporary crops (double-cropped areas are counted once), temporary meadows for mowing or for pasture, land under market or kitchen gardens, and land temporarily fallow, b) permanent pasture - land used for five or more years for forage, including natural and cultivated crops, and c) and under permanent crops - land cultivated with crops that occupy the land for long periods and need not be replanted after each harvest, such as cocoa, coffee, and rubber; land under flowering shrubs, fruit trees, nut trees, and vines is included, but land under trees grown for wood or timber is not. Agricultural land is also sometimes classified as irrigated and non-irrigated land. In arid and semi-arid countries agriculture is often confined to irrigated land, with very little farming possible in non-irrigated areas. Land abandoned as a result of shifting cultivation is excluded from arable land. Data on agricultural land are valuable for conducting studies on a various perspectives concerning agricultural production, food security and for deriving cropping intensity among others uses. Agricultural land indicator, along with land-use indicators, can also elucidate the environmental sustainability of countries' agricultural practices.

Aggregation method: Sum

Periodicity: Annual