Home >Fast Facts on the Commonwealth

Fast Facts on the Commonwealth

Countries

  • 54 independent countries, both advanced economies and developing countries
  • Africa (19 countries)
  • Asia (8)
  • Caribbean and Americas (13)
  • Europe (3)
  • Pacific (11)
  • 32 small states, usually with a population under 1.5 million
  • 24 small island developing states
  • The Pacific nation of Nauru is the smallest Commonwealth member country with a population of about 10,000
  • India is the most populous member country is with over 1.2 billion people.

Demographics

  • Combined population 2.4 billion
  • More than 60% of population aged 29 or under
  • 1 in 3 young people aged between 15 and 29 live in Commonwealth countries (about 640 million out of 1.8 billion).

Economics

  • The combined gross domestic product of Commonwealth countries was estimated at US$10.4 trillion in 2017 and predicted to reach US$13 trillion in 2020.
  • Bilateral costs for trading partners in Commonwealth countries are on average 19 percent less than between those in non-member countries.
  • Half of the top 20 global emerging cities are in the Commonwealth: New Delhi, Mumbai, Nairobi, Kuala Lumpur, Bangalore, Johannesburg, Kolkata, Cape Town, Chennai and Dhaka.
  • Many small and developing Commonwealth countries are among those with the lowest ecological footprints worldwide.
  • Commonwealth countries are among the highest performing in the Ibrahim Index of African Governance, and make up 7 of the top 10 nations.
  • In Sub-Saharan Africa, Commonwealth countries make up 7 of the top 10 highest performing countries for gender equality.

Elections

The Commonwealth has observed more than 140 elections in nearly 40 countries since 1980.

Media factsheets

Fast Facts on the Commonwealth Secretary-General (PDF)

Fast Facts on the Commonwealth and Elections (PDF)