Literacy Rate by Country

Literacy rates are a measure of the number of people capable of reading and writing in a country or region. Language comprehension is not counted as people learn to speak and understand from a very early age, but the ability to read and write is imparted through education, generally at an early stage of childhood. The higher the literacy rate of a country, the more widespread, accessible, and efficient its education system is. 

Nowadays, almost every developed country has a literacy rate of above 90%. Historically, literacy rates would have been much lower in these countries, as the average peasant would not have been given access to education, let alone being able to afford it. Literacy rates rose during the Enlightenment and the Industrial Revolution, peaking in the modern era with the development of holistic and well-rounded education programs for children, as well as affordable government-sponsored education programs. 

If you would like to know more about literacy rates by country, please refer to the data in the map and charts. 

Literacy Rate by Country

Albania - Literacy Rate

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98%

#11 in the World

Algeria - Literacy Rate

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81%

#47 in the World

Argentina - Literacy Rate

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99%

#6 in the World

Aruba - Literacy Rate

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98%

#12 in the World

Bangladesh - Literacy Rate

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74%

#55 in the World

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36.8%

#39 in the World

Benin - Literacy Rate

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42%

#67 in the World

Brazil - Literacy Rate

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93%

#36 in the World

Brunei - Literacy Rate

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97%

#17 in the World

Burkina Faso - Literacy Rate

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39%

#69 in the World

Cameroon - Literacy Rate

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77%

#51 in the World

Central African Republic - Literacy Rate

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37%

#70 in the World

Colombia - Literacy Rate

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95%

#26 in the World

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53.2%

#24 in the World

Comoros - Literacy Rate

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59%

#63 in the World

Costa Rica - Literacy Rate

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98%

#13 in the World

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40.9%

#36 in the World

East Timor - Literacy Rate

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68%

#59 in the World

El Salvador - Literacy Rate

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89%

#40 in the World

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33.6%

#40 in the World

Eritrea - Literacy Rate

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77%

#52 in the World

Eswatini - Literacy Rate

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88%

#41 in the World

Gabon - Literacy Rate

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85%

#45 in the World

Ghana - Literacy Rate

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79%

#50 in the World

Greece - Literacy Rate

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98%

#14 in the World

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65.3%

#19 in the World

Guatemala - Literacy Rate

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81%

#48 in the World

Guinea - Literacy Rate

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40%

#68 in the World

Honduras - Literacy Rate

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87%

#43 in the World

India - Literacy Rate

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74%

#56 in the World

Indonesia - Literacy Rate

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96%

#21 in the World

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38.1%

#37 in the World

Italy - Literacy Rate

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99%

#7 in the World

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52.5%

#26 in the World

Jordan - Literacy Rate

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98%

#15 in the World

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50.2%

#28 in the World

Kazakhstan - Literacy Rate

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100%

#1 in the World

Kenya - Literacy Rate

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82%

#46 in the World

Kuwait - Literacy Rate

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96%

#22 in the World

Kyrgyzstan - Literacy Rate

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100%

#2 in the World

Latvia - Literacy Rate

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100%

#3 in the World

Lebanon - Literacy Rate

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95%

#27 in the World

Madagascar - Literacy Rate

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77%

#53 in the World

Malaysia - Literacy Rate

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95%

#28 in the World

Mali - Literacy Rate

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35%

#71 in the World

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5.4%

#41 in the World

Malta - Literacy Rate

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95%

#29 in the World

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48.3%

#29 in the World

Mexico - Literacy Rate

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95%

#30 in the World

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38.6%

#38 in the World

Montenegro - Literacy Rate

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99%

#8 in the World

Morocco - Literacy Rate

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74%

#57 in the World

Namibia - Literacy Rate

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92%

#38 in the World

Nepal - Literacy Rate

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68%

#60 in the World

Niger - Literacy Rate

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35%

#72 in the World

Nigeria - Literacy Rate

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62%

#61 in the World

Oman - Literacy Rate

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96%

#23 in the World

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62.2%

#21 in the World

Pakistan - Literacy Rate

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57%

#64 in the World

Palestine - Literacy Rate

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97%

#18 in the World

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45.9%

#31 in the World

Panama - Literacy Rate

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95%

#31 in the World

Paraguay - Literacy Rate

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94%

#32 in the World

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42.4%

#35 in the World

People's Republic of China - Literacy Rate

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97%

#19 in the World

Peru - Literacy Rate

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94%

#33 in the World

Portugal - Literacy Rate

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96%

#24 in the World

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43.5%

#34 in the World

Republic of the Congo - Literacy Rate

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80%

#49 in the World

Romania - Literacy Rate

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99%

#9 in the World

Russia - Literacy Rate

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100%

#4 in the World

Rwanda - Literacy Rate

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73%

#58 in the World

São Tomé and Príncipe - Literacy Rate

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93%

#37 in the World

Seychelles - Literacy Rate

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96%

#25 in the World

Sierra Leone - Literacy Rate

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43%

#66 in the World

Singapore - Literacy Rate

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97%

#20 in the World

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74.5%

#14 in the World

South Sudan - Literacy Rate

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35%

#73 in the World

Spain - Literacy Rate

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98%

#16 in the World

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53.3%

#25 in the World

Sri Lanka - Literacy Rate

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92%

#39 in the World

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64.8%

#20 in the World

Sudan - Literacy Rate

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61%

#62 in the World

Suriname - Literacy Rate

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94%

#34 in the World

Thailand - Literacy Rate

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94%

#35 in the World

Uganda - Literacy Rate

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77%

#54 in the World

United States of America - Literacy Rate

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54%

#65 in the World

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90.9%

#1 in the World

Uruguay - Literacy Rate

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99%

#10 in the World

Uzbekistan - Literacy Rate

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100%

#5 in the World

Vanuatu - Literacy Rate

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88%

#42 in the World

Zambia - Literacy Rate

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87%

#44 in the World