The total number of countries in the world is widely debated for various reasons, hence the answer varies. The total number of countries in the world was 57 in 1900’s, which has now increased manifold. Know all the countries along with their capitals in this ScienceStruck write-up.
The number of countries in the world depends on, to put it simply, the counting authority. Some put the figure at 192, while others have it at 196. What leads to this confusion?
Even in these modern times, fighting for independence is not unheard of. Successful entities then become a new country, though it takes a while to be recognized. This is one of the major reasons that leads to confusion when the total number is considered. The other main reason is politics, where one or more countries refuse to acknowledge another as being independent.
How Many Countries are there in the World?
There are 192 members that constitute the United Nations, hence often the answer is 192. However, there are two countries who have chosen not to become a part of the United Nations. The Vatican City and Kosovo, although independent, are not included in the total tally of 192.
The U.S. Department of State recognizes 195 countries in the world. Taiwan is not recognized as an independent country. It is considered to be a part of The People’s Republic of China. Due to political reasons, United States refuses to accept Taiwan as an independent country. Till 1971, Taiwan was not only a member of the United Nations, but also part of the Security Council. China replaced Taiwan as part of the United Nation’s membership and since then Taiwan has been fighting its lone battle. Although it has been pressing for recognition as an independent country, the People’s Republic of China simply claims it to be just a province of China. In the list of 195, however, Kosovo does find a place.
There are many provinces which are erroneously mentioned as countries, but they do not count in the total tally, as these are colonies set up by other countries. Some of these are Puerto Rico, Bermuda, Northern Cyprus. Parts of United Kingdom like Northern Ireland, Scotland, Wales and England are not fully independent countries.
Added to the above mentioned issues, there always remains the question about the countries like Palestine, Greenland, Western Sahara and South Sudan. Although Greenland has declared its independence from Denmark way back in 2008, some of the key areas are yet governed by Denmark. Therefore, often it does not find a place in the list of countries in the world. For the uninitiated, the latest country to declare its independence is South Sudan. South Sudan declared its independence after six years of civil war in July 2011. Taking all these arguments into consideration, the tally of total number of countries in the world is 196.
|Name of the Country||Capital|
|Antigua and Barbuda||Saint John’s|
|Costa Rica||San José|
|Dominican Republic||Santo Domingo|
|El Salvador||San Salvador|
|Saint Kitts and Nevis||Basseterre|
|Saint Vincent and the Grenadines||Kingstown|
|Trinidad and Tobago||Port-of-Spain|
|United States of America||Washington, DC|
|Bolivia||La Paz, Sucre|
|Papua New Guinea||Port Moresby|
|Andorra||Andorra la Vella|
|Bosnia and Herzegovina||Sarajevo|
|San Marino||San Marino|
|Vatican City||Vatican City|
|Brunei||Bandar Seri Begawan|
|United Arab Emirates||Abu Dhabi|
|Central African Republic||Bangui|
|Congo, Republic of||Brazzaville|
|Democratic Republic of the Congo||Kinshasa|
|Sao Tome and Principe||São Tomé|
|South Africa||Pretoria, Cape Town, Bloemfontein|
|Tanzania||Dodoma, Dar es Salaam|
* – Turkey has been mentioned in the Asian continent, for geographically the major portion lies in Asia, while there is a minor part, which is a part of the European continent.
Antarctica is a continent by itself and does not come in the list of countries. Therefore, it does not find mention in the table above.
As mentioned above, the exact number cannot be accurately stated. New countries might get added, like in the case of South Sudan, or when looked at from a neutral perspective, countries like Scotland and Taiwan might be considered independent. For all general purposes and means, however, the above list should do very well indeed.