Even the experts have yet to agree on a consistent definition. For instance, the United Nations (UN) the classifies countries as either developed economies, economies in transition, or developing economies, although it doesn’t specify its basis for applying these groupings other than that they “reflect basic economic country conditions.” The International Monetary Fund (IMF) , on the other hand, takes several different factors into account when determining whether a nation is an advanced economy, an emerging market and developing economy, or a low-income developing country.
The purpose of this article is to highlight the development status of the 25 largest countries on Earth by GDP. This metric was chosen to better illustrate how nations meeting the traditional criteria for being “wealthy” can still be considered developing. That being said, countries on this list have been categorized according to the UN’s standards because its classification system is the closest to our definitions of “developed” and “developing.”
What Is a Developing Country?
A nation is typically considered to still be “developing” if it does not meet the socioeconomic criteria listed above. Simply put, these are most often countries with a lower income, an underdeveloped industrial base, a lower standard of living, and a lack of access to modern technology. As a result, developing nations frequently experience a lack of jobs, food, clean drinking water, education, healthcare, and housing.
According to the UN, in 2020, 126 countries were considered “developing.” All developing countries were located in either Africa, Asia, or Latin America and the Caribbean