List of All Countries in Asia


In the ancient language, Asia means “sunrise.” As the largest continent on the earth in both area (reaches almost one third of all its land area of our planet) and population, Asia is located in the eastern hemisphere, bounded to the east by the Pacific Ocean, to the south by the Indian Ocean, to the north by the Arctic, and to the west by the Mediterranean and Black Sea. As of 2019, Asia is composed of 48 countries with a population of 4.0504 billion, accounting for 60.7% of the total world population. Asia has an area of 44,000,000 square meters, contributing to 29.4% of the world’s land area.

Note that in an area that is equivalent to a quarter of the Asian territory, 90% of the peoples of the continent live, as in the plains, especially those monsoon-irrigated, where large cities have very high demographic densities. On the other hand, two-fifths of the territory is practically uninhabited, housing 3% or 4% of the total population, as in Mongolia, the lowest population density on the planet.

The Asian continent has a very varied geographical formation. Thus we have Mount Everest, the highest point on the planet, located on the China-Nepal border, while the alluvial and coastal lowlands extend until they meet the large plateau formations with very high mountain ranges, of which the highest mountains. they are located in the Himalayan mountain range. On the other hand, the Asian relief is marked by its altimetric end contrasts, such as the Himalayas, Pamir and Tibet, where the highest altitudes of the globe are located and the highest depressions, such as the Dead Sea. Finally, there are some of the highest mountains in the world, the longest rivers, the largest deserts, plains and plateaus, the thickest jungles and forests.

Asian nations have diverse systems of government, such as the communists in China and North Korea, the ruling monarchs of the kingdoms of Saudi Arabia and Thailand, the sheikhs of the Kingdom of Bahrain, the state of Qatar and the United Arab Emirates, the countries such as Israel and Japan or the sultanate of the nine Malay states.

People are vastly different in family trees, customary practices or behaviors, languages, beliefs of religion. So Chinese (the most widely spoken language in the world), Arabic, Malay-Indonesian, Japanese and, in India, Hindi -urdu and Bengali, are some of the many languages ​​spoken in Asia, while from the religious point of view it was the cradle of the most important religions in the world: Judaism and Christianity were founded in Palestine; Hinduism and Buddhism began in India; and the Islamic Caliphate and other Muslim states took over the Middle East from the seventh century.

Of the Asian population, we can say that it is made up of yellow people, however, there are great physical, linguistic and cultural distinctions between them. There are also other ethnic trunks, such as black and white, prevalent in the southeast of the continent (Middle East).

Map of Asia

Map of Asian Countries

Alphabetical list of countries in Asia

The following table lists 48 independent nations in Asia. Hong Kong and Macao are two special cities of China. Taiwan, formerly known as Republic of China, is now widely recognized as a province of China.

# Country Name Official Name Independence Date
1 Afghanistan Islamic Republic of Afghanistan 1919/8/19
2 Armenia Republic of Armenia 1991/9/21
3 Azerbaijan Republic of Azerbaijan 1991/10/18
4 Bahrain Kingdom of Bahrain 1971/12/16
5 Bangladesh People’s Republic of Bangladesh 1971/3/26
6 Bhutan Kingdom of Bhutan
7 Brunei Brunei Darussalam 1984/1/1
8 Burma (Myanmar) Republic of the Union of Myanmar 1948/1/4
9 Cambodia Kingdom of Cambodia 1953/11/9
10 China People’s Republic of China 1949/10/1
11 Cyprus Republic of Cyprus 1960/10/1
12 Georgia Georgia 1991/4/9
13 India Republic of India 1947/8/15
14 Indonesia Republic of Indonesia 1945/8/17
15 Iran Islamic Republic of Iran 1979/4/1
16 Iraq Republic of Iraq 1932/10/3
17 Israel State of Israel 1905/5/1
18 Japan Japan
19 Jordan Hashemite Kingdom of Jordan 1946/5/25
20 Kazakhstan Republic of Kazakhstan 1991/12/16
21 Kuwait State of Kuwait 1961/2/25
22 Kyrgyzstan Kyrgyz Republic 1991/8/31
23 Laos Lao People’s Democratic Republic 1953/10/22
24 Lebanon Lebanese Republic 1943/11/22
25 Malaysia Malaysia 1957/8/31
26 Maldives Republic of Maldives 1965/7/26
27 Mongolia Mongolia 1911/12/29
28 Nepal Federal Democratic Republic of Nepal
29 North Korea Democratic People’s Republic of Korea 1945/8/15
30 Oman Sultanate of Oman 1650/11/18
31 Pakistan Islamic Republic of Pakistan 1947/8/14
32 Palestine
33 Philippines Republic of the Philippines 1898/6/12
34 Qatar State of Qatar 1971/12/18
35 Saudi Arabia Kingdom of Saudi Arabia
36 Singapore Republic of Singapore 1965/8/9
37 South Korea Republic of Korea 1945/8/15
38 Sri Lanka Democratic Socialist Republic of Sri Lanka 1948/2/4
39 Syria Syrian Arab Republic 1946/4/17
40 Tajikistan Republic of Tajikistan 1991/9/9
41 Thailand Kingdom of Thailand
42 Timor-Leste Democratic Republic of Timor-Leste 2002/5/20
43 Turkey Republic of Turkey
44 Turkmenistan Turkmenistan 1991/10/27
45 United Arab Emirates United Arab Emirates 1971/12/2
46 Uzbekistan Republic of Uzbekistan 1991/9/1
47 Vietnam Socialist Republic of Viet Nam 1945/9/2
48 Yemen Republic of Yemen 1967/11/30

Asian countries by area

The area of the Asian continent is some 44.5 million square kilometers, contributing to nearly one-third of all land area of our planet. Again, China is the biggest country while Maldives is the smallest one.

Rank Country Name Land Area (km²) Density
1 China 9,326,410 149.88
2 India 2,973,190 453.61
3 Kazakhstan 2,699,700 6.85
4 Saudi Arabia 2,149,690 15.54
5 Indonesia 1,811,569 147.98
6 Mongolia 1,553,556 2.10
7 Iran 1,531,595 53.89
8 Pakistan 881,912 232.51
9 Turkey 769,632 106.55
10 Burma 653,508 83.15
11 Afghanistan 652,230 49.41
12 Yemen 527,968 55.23
13 Thailand 510,890 129.92
14 Turkmenistan 469,930 12.64
15 Iraq 437,367 89.46
16 Uzbekistan 425,400 78.90
17 Japan 364,543 346.19
18 Malaysia 329,613 99.42
19 Vietnam 310,070 307.52
20 Oman 309,500 14.97
21 Philippines 298,170 361.57
22 Laos 230,800 30.86
23 Kyrgyzstan 191,801 33.31
24 Syria 183,630 92.96
25 Cambodia 176,515 92.28
26 Nepal 143,351 206.55
27 Tajikistan 141,510 63.11
28 Bangladesh 130,168 1,281.05
29 North Korea 120,538 211.14
30 South Korea 99,909 518.58
31 Jordan 88,802 117.57
32 Azerbaijan 86,100 115.93
33 United Arab Emirates 83,600 116.87
34 Georgia 69,700 53.42
35 Sri Lanka 62,732 345.44
36 Bhutan 38,394 19.32
37 Armenia 28,342 104.51
38 Israel 20,330 444.93
39 Kuwait 17,818 248.07
40 Timor-Leste 14,919 92.98
41 Qatar 11,586 236.53
42 Lebanon 10,230 670.16
43 Cyprus 9,241 93.52
44 Palestine 5,640 882.39
45 Brunei 5,265 84.02
46 Bahrain 767 2,012.11
47 Singapore 687 8,207.70
48 Maldives 298 1,268.80

Countries in Asia by population

Among 48 independent Asian countries, the most populous is China and the least populated is Maldives. The full list of countries in Asia is shown in the table below, ranked by latest total population.

Rank Country Name Population Region
1 China 1,397,849,989 Eastern Asia
2 India 1,348,669,989 Southern Asia
3 Indonesia 268,074,589 Southeastern Asia
4 Pakistan 205,050,989 Southern Asia
5 Bangladesh 166,751,989 Southern Asia
6 Japan 126,199,989 Eastern Asia
7 Philippines 107,807,989 Southeastern Asia
8 Vietnam 95,353,989 Southeastern Asia
9 Iran 82,545,289 Western Asia
10 Turkey 82,003,871 Western Asia
11 Thailand 66,376,994 Southeastern Asia
12 Burma 54,339,755 Southeastern Asia
13 South Korea 51,811,156 Eastern Asia
14 Iraq 39,127,889 Western Asia
15 Uzbekistan 33,562,122 Central Asia
16 Saudi Arabia 33,413,649 Western Asia
17 Malaysia 32,769,189 Southeastern Asia
18 Afghanistan 32,225,549 Southern Asia
19 Nepal 29,609,612 Southern Asia
20 Yemen 29,161,911 Western Asia
21 North Korea 25,449,989 Eastern Asia
22 Sri Lanka 21,670,101 Southern Asia
23 Kazakhstan 18,497,053 Central Asia
24 Syria 17,070,124 Western Asia
25 Cambodia 16,289,259 Southeastern Asia
26 Jordan 10,440,889 Western Asia
27 Azerbaijan 9,981,446 Western Asia
28 United Arab Emirates 9,770,518 Western Asia
29 Israel 9,045,359 Western Asia
30 Tajikistan 8,930,989 Central Asia
31 Laos 7,123,194 Southeastern Asia
32 Lebanon 6,855,702 Western Asia
33 Kyrgyzstan 6,389,489 Central Asia
34 Turkmenistan 5,942,078 Central Asia
35 Singapore 5,638,689 Southeastern Asia
36 Palestine 4,976,673 Western Asia
37 Oman 4,632,777 Western Asia
38 Kuwait 4,420,099 Western Asia
39 Georgia 3,723,489 Western Asia
40 Mongolia 3,263,376 Eastern Asia
41 Armenia 2,962,089 Western Asia
42 Qatar 2,740,468 Western Asia
43 Bahrain 1,543,289 Western Asia
44 Timor-Leste 1,387,138 Southeastern Asia
45 Cyprus 864,189 Western Asia
46 Bhutan 741,661 Southern Asia
47 Brunei 442,389 Southeastern Asia
48 Maldives 378,103 Southern Asia

Territories in Asia by Population

In addition to independent countries, there are also dependent territories in Asia. See table below for a full list of all 3 Asian territories, with latest total population and dependencies.

Rank Dependent Territory Population Territory of
1 Taiwan 23,589,870 China
2 Hong Kong 7,482,500 China
3 Macao 622,567 China

Colonization and Asian History

The term Asia would be a reference to one of the oceanic nymphs, better known as Climene. Formerly, the term Asia used to designate the present Asia Minor (Anatolia) which in turn can be derived from Akkadian (w) aṣû (m), which means “to rise”, “to leave” with respect to sunrise. Its history, however, can be understood as narrating the emergence of East Asia, Southern Asia, and the Middle East.

Asian civilization began more than 4,000 years ago and its people founded the oldest cities, as well as the founders of all the world’s most important religions. Nevertheless, each of these regions developed a civilization along fertile valleys of rivers, while the steppe was inhabited by nomads on horseback, which from there reached every part of the Asian continent.

However, the Caucasus, the Himalayas, the Karakum Desert, and the Gobi Desert represented barriers that the steppe riders hardly crossed. As a result, many ancient civilizations were influenced by the famous Silk Road, which linked China, India, the Middle East, and Europe.

In turn, the nations of Western Europe conquered territories in Asia between the 16th and 19th centuries. Thus, the major European powers seized parts of Asia, such as British India, French Indochina and Macau and Goa, which were under Portuguese authority.

After World War II (1939-1945), the Asian continent was transformed into the center of the battles between countries that adopt communism as a government apparatus and countries that use capitalism as an economic precept.

Asian Economy

In Asia there are developed countries, such as Japan, South Korea, Israel, Singapore or Taiwan, which have levels of economic prosperity and quality of life comparable to those in Europe or Anglo-Saxon America. On the other hand, the whole continent is distinguished by its very poor populations, in contrast to elites with enormous wealth.

Asia’s most populous cities

  • Mumbai or Bombay in India (18.3 million)
  • Kolkata in India (14.7 million)
  • Shanghai in China (17.1 million)
  • Tokyo in Japan (12.3 million)

Industry

The largest economy in Asia in terms of gross domestic product (GDP) is China, followed by India and Japan. However, by nominal GDP criterion Japan is considered to be the largest Asian economy and the second largest in the world. This country was for a long time the most industrialized of the Asian countries, which excelled in the manufacture of ships, automobiles and high-tech electrical and electronic products.

In China, the industrial park has been destined for the manufacture of items essential to the domestic market. Only from the mid-1970s did the Chinese economy actually start export-oriented production. India, in turn, uses its agricultural production and mineral wealth to supply its textile, food, steel and metallurgical industries. Already in eastern Russia, we find many centers of basic industries.

Agriculture

The most important economic activity in quantitative terms across the continent is agriculture, especially rice cultivation in the monsoon-stricken region and, to the north, wheat; In less fertile areas it is possible to grow barley, maize and other cereals. Also noteworthy are tobacco, tea, jute, cotton, pepper and rubber crops.

Livestock

China is the largest producer of small animals (the world’s first producer of pigs, the third of sheep and the fifth of cattle). In India we find the largest number of cattle in the world, however, due to religious beliefs, that herd is not consumed.

Mining

Among the mineral-producing countries, the highlight is China, a major producer and consumer of oil, coal, iron, lead, zinc and mercury. India is also outstanding for its iron, coal, mica and manganese reserves, as well as its large oil production, although it does not reach that of the Middle East countries, which produce more than 30% of the total oil extracted on the planet.

Fauna, Flora and Climate

Asia’s territorial breadth promotes differences in latitude, low- and high-altitude regions and the great influence of air masses and continentality / maritimity, which promote a good multiplicity of climate types and plant formations on the continent.

Thus, on the Siberian plain, for example, tundra formations begin to emerge. Heading south, we will have a region covered by the taiga. Already in the archipelagos located in South Asia, we find equatorial and tropical forests. Temperate forests will occur frequently in the Far East, while xerophytic vegetation will be common in the desert or semi-arid areas of the continent.

Formed from an enormous continental expanse, Asia completes spaces from all climate areas of the northern hemisphere: equatorial, tropical, temperate and polar. In the far north lands prevail the polar climate, which is becoming milder towards the south.

The center of the continent, because it is far from maritime influences, blocks the passage of ocean winds carried by the temperate continental climate, thus alternating high temperature summers with very cold winters. Already the temperate ocean, supports variations depending on the altitude of the relief, latitude and interiority.

Further south, to the rear of the great mountain ranges, which block the entry of the moist ocean winds, are vast expanses surmounted by semi-arid climate and arid climate, forming a vast strip of deserts. However, the main climate phenomenon in the region is the tropical monsoon, with heavy rainfall during the summer.

It is marked by the activity of winds, known as monsoons, that rush from the Indian and Pacific to the mainland during summer, and from the interior of Asia to these oceans during winter. Both heavy rainfall in the region influenced by equatorial and tropical climates and the high abundance of melting snow from the high mountains benefit the existence of large rivers, which cross in almost every direction of the Asian continent. Of these, the main ones are: Yangtze River in China; Brahmaputra and the Ganges in India; the Indus River in Pakistan and; in the Persian Gulf, the Tiger and the Euphrates.

Finally, it is worth remembering that in mountain regions, due to altitude, we will find very low temperatures, regardless of their geographical location.

Curiosities

  • Asia contains most of the Earth’s deserts: from Arabia (Saudi Arabia), Syria, Thal (Pakistan), Thar (or Great Indian Desert), Lut (or Desert of Iran), Gobi (Mongolia), Taklamakan (China), Karakum (Turkmenistan), Kerman (Iran), Judea (Israel), Negev.
  • Asia contains 11 time zones.
  • Asians were also the inventors of paper, gunpowder, compass and printing press.
  • Asia’s main trading blocs are: Asia Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC), Asia-Europe Economic Meeting, Association of Southeast Asian Countries (ASEAN), Closer Economic and Trade Relations Agreements (China with Hong Kong and with Macao), Commonwealth of Independent States (CIS) and South Asian Association for Regional Cooperation (SAARC).
  • The so-called “Asian Tigers” (South Korea, Republic of China, Singapore and Hong Kong) are the largest economic and financial powers of the continent.
  • On the Asian continent, the urban population is 40% while the rural population is 60%.
  • Asia has 44 independent countries.
  • The main religions of the Asian continent are: Muslims (21.9%) and Hinduists (21.5%).

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