New World Bank country classifications by income level: 2020-2021


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Updated country income classifications are available here.

The World Bank assigns the world’s economies to four income groups—low, lower-middle, upper-middle, and high-income countries. The classifications are updated each year on July 1 and are based on GNI per capita in current USD (using the Atlas method exchange rates) of the previous year (i.e. 2019 in this case).

The classifications change for two reasons:

  1. In each country, factors such as economic growth, inflation, exchange rates, and population growth influence GNI per capita. Revisions to national accounts methods and data can also influence GNI per capita. The updated data on GNI per capita data for 2019 can be accessed here.
  1. To keep the income classification thresholds fixed in real terms, they are adjusted annually for inflation. The Special Drawing Rights (SDR) deflator is used which is a weighted average of the GDP deflators of China, Japan, the United Kingdom, the United States, and the Euro Area. This year, the thresholds have moved up in line with this inflation measure. The new thresholds (to be compared with GNI per capita in current USD, Atlas method) are as follows.

Changes in classifications

The table below lists the ten economies that are moving to a different category. It is important to emphasize that the World Bank’s income classifications use the GNI of the previous year (2019 in this case). Thus, the GNI numbers that are used for this year’s classification do not yet reflect the impact of COVID-19.

National accounts revisions have played a significant role in the upward revision for Benin, Nauru and Tanzania. For Sudan, the GNI series for 2009-2018 has been revised as a result of revisions to the exchange rates. The 2018 GNI per capita figure has been revised down to $840 from the previously published figure of $1,560 (which is listed in the table). Algeria, Indonesia, Mauritius, Nepal, Sri Lanka and Romania were very close to the respective thresholds last year.

More information

More detailed information on how the World Bank classifies countries is available here. The country and lending groups page provides a complete list of economies classified by income, region, and lending status and links to previous years’ classifications. The lending groups (IDA, Blend, IBRD) have also been updated. The classification tables include all World Bank members, plus all other economies with populations of more than 30,000. The term country, used interchangeably with economy, does not imply political independence but refers to any territory for which authorities report separate social or economic statistics.

Data for GNI, GNI per capita, GDP, GDP PPP, and Population for 2019 are now available on the World Bank's Open Data Catalog. Note that these are preliminary estimates and may be revised. For more information, please contact us at [email protected].


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Umar Serajuddin

Manager, Development Data Group, The World Bank

Join the Conversation

Joshua Simon Lebabu
July 09, 2020

Is it possible to have a country moved from a lower class to a higher class while majority of it's citizens are poor?

If yes, then what does that mean?

July 09, 2020

Many thanks for my lovely country to be MIC

Jaffer kalinga
July 09, 2020

still need more explanation about Tanzania to enter in mid income in 2020

July 09, 2020

This is useful information

Prosper Juma
July 09, 2020

Tanzanians are happy to move forward to the next step👏👏👏

Eric V Swanson
July 09, 2020

Umar and Nada,
Thanks for keeping this important tool up to date. I know there is an important internal mandate, but the income estimates and classifications have many external users as well.

Best wishes, Eric

Bello Mustapha Adekunle
July 09, 2020

Great work and effort. Although, I have always been skeptical regarding the theory of Inflation which is one of the good indicator of country GDP and others key factors of economic indicators.
But in the case of my country the reverse is the case, the general prices of goods and services are inflating without abundance supply of money in circulation.

1. Please what can you say about this economic scenario?
2. Will it not be a bias data to be use for economic analysis?
3. Economist views and solutions to such scenarios.

Thanks and Regards.

Deogratius Dotto
July 09, 2020

I appreciate for your classification report.
Nevertheless, I would like to understand the methodology usually used to collect and analyse the data in developing countries given the majority of small business are still informally organized.

Dr. Eddy Wamlume
July 09, 2020

Basic Education, Industrialization are the key two factors you can use to measure economic class in a country.

What is basic education means
The knowledge or skills that enable an individual to live and gets daily basis needs.

Madhusudan Dhungel
July 09, 2020

Good information to Nepal.

Eisa H Mohammed
July 09, 2020

Excellent report

Henry Mwinuka
July 09, 2020

I am very proud of my Country Tanzania.

Sachindra upadhysy
July 09, 2020

Good news for nepal

Sébastien KASAU
July 09, 2020

Very useful, although my country, DRCongo, still low-income one.

July 09, 2020

What about the case of dropping to a lower level does happen

Deodath Silayo Gaudenve
July 09, 2020

Tanzania weldone

Sara A.
July 09, 2020

Do these changes impact the ICP 2017 Report on the global share of the world's economy?

July 09, 2020

Together we can eradicate poverty. By creating more job opportunities. Helping hands and being innovative. Also creating empowerment programs to help build individuals for national interest.

Elizaphan Mwangi
July 09, 2020

Very informative and reliable.Kindly when updating us on the economies moving up or down,present the other countries in full.Lets keep safe from Covid-19.Thank you very much

Kalum Sanjeewa
July 09, 2020

income of Sri Lanka mainly dropped due the terrorist attack in 2019
interest if the country can show an improvement in next years

Chandrashekhar shekhar singh
August 05, 2020

Thanks Nadia and Umar for this report . I hope India will become a high income countries in future . not only in incomes but also a better performance of the India in HDI report.