Key statistics on LDCs

March 2023

Long-standing infrastructure gaps, structural socioeconomic challenges and enormous development needs continue to undermine the resilience of these countries.

March-June 2022

Food export restrictions hurt millions in least developed countries

About 119 million people in 26 least developed countries have been facing severe food insecurity since the beginning of 2022, a situation now worsened by rising food prices and trade restrictions.


March 2022

Soaring debt burden jeopardizes recovery of least developed countries

COVID-19 has exacerbated the situation in least developed countries, with debt burdens now looming large on recovery efforts.


February 2022

Commodity dependence haunts least developed countries

Heightened reliance on exports of primary commodities has been a long-standing concern for policymakers in least developed countries (LDCs), because of the limited developmental benefits associated with this lopsided export specialization pattern, as well as the macroeconomic challenges it entails.


January 2022

7% growth target eludes most least developed countries

The COVID-19 pandemic poses a challenge for sustainable development prospects in least developed countries (LDCs), as containment and lockdown measures have resulted in an economic slowdown for the group as a whole and for African LDCs in particular.


December 2021

Least developed countries need more funds

Developing countries account for 45% of world trade but least developed countries remain on the margins.


November 2021

Least developed countries need more funds

Climate change impacts are increasing in intensity and frequency; highlighting the need for more investment in climate resilient and low-carbon infrastructure.


October 2021

Smallest footprints, largest impacts

The world's poorest countries need more support to tackle "vastly unequal" impacts of climate change. Other countries must do more in line with the principle of common but differentiated responsibilities.


September 2021

Harnessing demographic dividend in least developed countries

For most of the world's most vulnerable countries, the promise of younger generations driving development and contributing to higher living standards will depend upon the right socioeconomic policy mix.


August 2021

food price hikes in least developed countries

Food insecurity has been a long-standing concern in least developed countries, but COVID-19 is exacerbating this problem, derailing progress towards UN Sustainable Development Goal 2, which aims to achieve "zero hunger".


July 2021

Over half of the people in least developed countries lack access to electricity

Hundreds of millions of people worldwide still lack basic access to electricity, with most of them in least developed countries (LDCs).


June 2021

Least developed countries lag behind in expected years of schooling

Human capital accumulation - an ongoing process of expanding knowledge and skills - is particularly critical to promoting economic development in least developed countries (LDCs).


May 2021

How long will it take least developed countries to recover from the COVID-19 shock?

In 2020, the COVID-19 pandemic and the resulting global recession engulfed least developed countries (LDCs) in their worst socioeconomic performance in 30 years.


April 2021

Least developed countries suffer digital divide in mobile connectivity

Not only is network coverage much lower in least developed countries than in the rest of the world, but their mobile data usage is also significantly more expensive, according to an UNCTAD analysis.