Least Developed Countries (LDCs)

Since 1971, the United Nations has recognized least developed countries (LDCs) as a category of States that are deemed highly disadvantaged in their development process, for structural, historical and also geographical reasons.

LDCs face more than other countries the risk of deeper poverty and remaining in a situation of underdevelopment. More than 75 per cent of the LDCs' population still live in poverty.

These countries are also characterized by their vulnerability to external economic shocks, natural and man-made disasters and communicable diseases. As such, the LDCs are in need of the highest degree of attention from the international community.

Currently, the 47 LDCs comprise around 880 million people, 12 per cent of the world population, which face severe structural impediments to growth. However, the LDCs account for less than 2 per cent of world GDP and around 1 per cent of world trade.

Least Developed Countries  

Four United Nations Conferences on the LDCs were held in: 1981, 1990, 2001 and 2011. The Fourth United Nations Conference on the Least Developed Countries adopted the Programme of Action for the Least Developed Countries for the Decade 2011-2020 - the so-called Istanbul Programme of Action (IPoA).



United Nations
15 March 2018Making progress on sustainable development, four countries tipped to graduate from ranks of poorest
Nha Trang University of Viet Nam
09 March 2018UNCTAD and Vietnamese university to create a sustainable fisheries training centre
05 February 2018Promises to world’s poorest need to be kept to stop massive inequalities, new trends show
13 December 2017At MC11, new research shows convergence on rules of origin is happening
Flag of Germany
29 November 2017Germany helps Least Developed Countries prepare for e-trade with 750,000 euros in aid
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