* indicates monthly or quarterly data series

Labor force, million people, 2021 - Country rankings:

The average for 2021 based on 180 countries was 19.04 million people.The highest value was in China: 792.08 million people and the lowest value was in Tonga: 0.03 million people. The indicator is available from 1990 to 2021. Below is a chart for all countries where data are available.

Measure: million people; Source: The World Bank
Select indicator
* indicates monthly or quarterly data series


Countries Labor force, 2021 Global rank Available data
China 792.08 1 1990 - 2021
India 471.3 2 1990 - 2021
USA 164.79 3 1990 - 2021
Indonesia 139.16 4 1990 - 2021
Brazil 99.43 5 1990 - 2021
Pakistan 73.78 6 1990 - 2021
Russia 71.77 7 1990 - 2021
Bangladesh 69.82 8 1990 - 2021
Japan 68.22 9 1990 - 2021
Nigeria 64.48 10 1990 - 2021
Mexico 57.3 11 1990 - 2021
Vietnam 56.15 12 1990 - 2021
Ethiopia 55.9 13 1990 - 2021
Germany 43.85 14 1990 - 2021
Philippines 43.83 15 1990 - 2021
Thailand 39.05 16 1990 - 2021
UK 34.65 17 1990 - 2021
DR Congo 32.71 18 1990 - 2021
Turkey 32.62 19 1990 - 2021
France 30.97 20 1990 - 2021
Tanzania 29.04 21 1990 - 2021
South Korea 28.55 22 1990 - 2021
Egypt 28.46 23 1990 - 2021
Iran 26.41 24 1990 - 2021
Colombia 25.91 25 1990 - 2021
Kenya 24.97 26 1990 - 2021
Italy 24.95 27 1990 - 2021
Spain 23.31 28 1990 - 2021
South Africa 22.67 29 1990 - 2021
Burma 22.47 30 1990 - 2021
Canada 21.01 31 1990 - 2021
Argentina 20.95 32 1990 - 2021
Ukraine 20.31 33 1990 - 2021
Peru 18.57 34 1990 - 2021
Poland 18.25 35 1990 - 2021
Uganda 17.35 36 1990 - 2021
Nepal 16.99 37 1990 - 2021
North Korea 16.93 38 1990 - 2021
Malaysia 16.28 39 1990 - 2021
Saudi Arabia 16.14 40 1990 - 2021
Madagascar 14.46 41 1990 - 2021
Uzbekistan 14.36 42 1990 - 2021
Mozambique 14.15 43 1990 - 2021
Angola 13.97 44 1990 - 2021
Ghana 13.7 45 1990 - 2021
Australia 13.65 46 1990 - 2021
Sudan 13.06 47 1990 - 2021
Algeria 12.4 48 1990 - 2021
Morocco 11.96 49 1990 - 2021
Cameroon 11.95 50 1990 - 2021
Iraq 10.72 51 1990 - 2021
Venezuela 10.67 52 1990 - 2021
Netherlands 9.9 53 1990 - 2021
Afghanistan 9.7 54 1990 - 2021
Cambodia 9.36 55 1990 - 2021
Kazakhstan 9.29 56 1990 - 2021
Niger 9.25 57 1990 - 2021
Ivory Coast 8.81 58 1990 - 2021
Malawi 8.54 59 1990 - 2021
Chile 8.5 60 1990 - 2021
Ecuador 8.45 61 1990 - 2021
Romania 8.43 62 1990 - 2021
Sri Lanka 8.24 63 1990 - 2021
Zambia 7.84 64 1990 - 2021
Burkina Faso 7.8 65 1990 - 2021
Mali 7.62 66 1990 - 2021
Zimbabwe 7.42 67 1990 - 2021
Yemen 6.91 68 1990 - 2021
Guatemala 6.68 69 1990 - 2021
Rwanda 6.64 70 1990 - 2021
UA Emirates 6.5 71 1990 - 2021
Bolivia 6.31 72 1990 - 2021
Sweden 5.56 73 1990 - 2021
Syria 5.45 74 1990 - 2021
Czechia 5.38 75 1990 - 2021
Chad 5.31 76 1990 - 2021
Burundi 5.27 77 1990 - 2021
Belgium 5.22 78 1990 - 2021
Portugal 5.19 79 1990 - 2021
Benin 5.15 80 1990 - 2021
Haiti 5.07 81 1990 - 2021
Domin. Rep. 4.97 82 1990 - 2021
Azerbaijan 4.96 83 1990 - 2021
Switzerland 4.96 84 1990 - 2021
Belarus 4.92 85 1990 - 2021
Hungary 4.92 86 1990 - 2021
Guinea 4.8 87 1990 - 2021
Austria 4.66 88 1990 - 2021
Greece 4.66 89 1990 - 2021
Senegal 4.42 90 1990 - 2021
Honduras 4.25 91 1990 - 2021
Israel 4.21 92 1990 - 2021
Tunisia 4.15 93 1990 - 2021
Laos 3.86 94 1990 - 2021
Hong Kong 3.81 95 1990 - 2021
Paraguay 3.71 96 1990 - 2021
Bulgaria 3.27 97 1990 - 2021
Singapore 3.27 98 1990 - 2021
Serbia 3.14 99 1990 - 2021
Denmark 3.05 100 1990 - 2021
Nicaragua 3.02 101 1990 - 2021
Somalia 2.99 102 1990 - 2021
Norway 2.97 103 1990 - 2021
Togo 2.91 104 1990 - 2021
New Zealand 2.9 105 1990 - 2021
Finland 2.81 106 1990 - 2021
Papua N.G. 2.8 107 1990 - 2021
Slovakia 2.78 108 1990 - 2021
Oman 2.75 109 1990 - 2021
Sierra Leone 2.74 110 1990 - 2021
El Salvador 2.72 111 1990 - 2021
Jordan 2.66 112 1990 - 2021
Kyrgyzstan 2.55 113 1990 - 2021
Ireland 2.5 114 1990 - 2021
Tajikistan 2.46 115 1990 - 2021
Costa Rica 2.42 116 1990 - 2021
Kuwait 2.41 117 1990 - 2021
Libya 2.4 118 1990 - 2021
Liberia 2.32 119 1990 - 2021
R. of Congo 2.22 120 1990 - 2021
Qatar 2.21 121 1990 - 2021
Lebanon 2.17 122 1990 - 2021
C.A. Republic 2 123 1990 - 2021
Panama 1.98 124 1990 - 2021
Turkmenistan 1.94 125 1990 - 2021
Croatia 1.74 126 1990 - 2021
Georgia 1.74 127 1990 - 2021
Uruguay 1.71 128 1990 - 2021
Eritrea 1.64 129 1990 - 2021
Lithuania 1.47 130 1990 - 2021
Jamaica 1.44 131 1990 - 2021
Albania 1.36 132 1990 - 2021
Mongolia 1.35 133 1990 - 2021
Mauritania 1.29 134 1990 - 2021
Palestine 1.27 135 1990 - 2021
Armenia 1.22 136 1990 - 2021
Bosnia & Herz. 1.18 137 1990 - 2021
Puerto Rico 1.12 138 1990 - 2021
Slovenia 1.04 139 1990 - 2021
Bahrain 1.01 140 1990 - 2021
Botswana 0.97 141 1990 - 2021
Namibia 0.95 142 1990 - 2021
Latvia 0.94 143 1990 - 2021
Lesotho 0.93 144 1990 - 2021
North Macedonia 0.91 145 1990 - 2021
Moldova 0.84 146 1990 - 2021
G.-Bissau 0.83 147 1990 - 2021
Gambia 0.8 148 1990 - 2021
Estonia 0.7 149 1990 - 2021
Gabon 0.69 150 1990 - 2021
Cyprus 0.64 151 1990 - 2021
Tr.&Tobago 0.64 152 1990 - 2021
Mauritius 0.6 153 1990 - 2021
Eq. Guinea 0.5 154 1990 - 2021
Macao 0.39 155 1990 - 2021
Swaziland 0.37 156 1990 - 2021
Fiji 0.36 157 1990 - 2021
Solomon Isl. 0.36 158 1990 - 2021
Bhutan 0.35 159 1990 - 2021
Luxembourg 0.33 160 1990 - 2021
Guyana 0.3 161 1990 - 2021
Malta 0.28 162 1990 - 2021
Montenegro 0.28 163 1990 - 2021
Comoros 0.24 164 1990 - 2021
Maldives 0.24 165 1990 - 2021
Suriname 0.24 166 1990 - 2021
Brunei 0.22 167 1990 - 2021
Cape Verde 0.22 168 1990 - 2021
Djibouti 0.22 169 1990 - 2021
Bahamas 0.21 170 1990 - 2021
Iceland 0.2 171 1990 - 2021
Belize 0.18 172 1990 - 2021
Barbados 0.14 173 1990 - 2021
N. Caledonia 0.13 174 1990 - 2021
Vanuatu 0.13 175 1990 - 2021
Saint Lucia 0.1 176 1990 - 2021
S.T.&Principe 0.07 177 1990 - 2021
St. Vincent & ... 0.06 178 1990 - 2021
Samoa 0.05 179 1990 - 2021
Tonga 0.03 180 1990 - 2021


Economic outlook

Definition: Labor force comprises people ages 15 and older who supply labor for the production of goods and services during a specified period. It includes people who are currently employed and people who are unemployed but seeking work as well as first-time job-seekers. Not everyone who works is included, however. Unpaid workers, family workers, and students are often omitted, and some countries do not count members of the armed forces. Labor force size tends to vary during the year as seasonal workers enter and leave.
What makes up the labor force?

The labor force constitutes the proportion of a country’s pool of male and female workers aged 15 years and above who are employed and those currently unemployed but searching for a job. However, it does not include discouraged workers, retirees, and stay-at-home parents. This implies that the totality of the labor force in any country consists of employed and unemployed workers. While employed workers are the set of people who work either through paid or self-employment, the unemployed category consists of those without work, or those currently available for work, and those seeking employment.

Why does the labor force vary across countries?

Differences in the labor force across countries in the world are influenced by several factors. Traditionally, factors such as population size, statutory entry and retirement ages, official school-leaving age, number of working hours and working days, and labor market structure account for the disparity in the labor force of any country. Meanwhile, the existence of seasonal jobs also increases the rate of variation in the labor force from time to time. Countries with high seasonal employment opportunities may tend to have higher labor capacity at one time than other nations.

Furthermore, the economic conditions of countries also determine the number of employed and unemployed workers in the labor force. This is because during a recessionary era, industries tend to lay off workers, which raises the level of unemployment relative to the total population. Meanwhile, periods of an economic boom come with job opportunities that absorb workers.

In addition, geopolitical risks such as wars, conflicts, and terrorism also contribute to variations in the labor force among countries. For instance, countries with high geopolitical uncertainties are likely to have a small labor force since most employed workers may migrate to another nation for their safety, whereas those that are less confronted by geopolitical upheavals may have a large workforce.

If you are interested in global labor regulations and policies, you can visit the International Labour Organization page.


792.08
471.30
164.79
139.16
99.43
73.78
71.77
69.82
68.22
64.48
57.30
56.15
55.90
43.85
43.83
39.05
34.65
32.71
32.62
30.97
29.04
28.55
28.46
26.41
25.91
24.97
24.95
23.31
22.67
22.47
21.01
20.95
20.31
18.57
18.25
17.35
16.99
16.93
16.28
16.14
14.46
14.36
14.15
13.97
13.70
13.65
13.06
12.40
11.96
11.95
10.72
10.67
9.90
9.70
9.36
9.29
9.25
8.81
8.54
8.50
8.45
8.43
8.24
7.84
7.80
7.62
7.42
6.91
6.68
6.64
6.50
6.31
5.56
5.45
5.38
5.31
5.27
5.22
5.19
5.15
5.07
4.97
4.96
4.96
4.92
4.92
4.80
4.66
4.66
4.42
4.25
4.21
4.15
3.86
3.81
3.71
3.27
3.27
3.14
3.05
3.02
2.99
2.97
2.91
2.90
2.81
2.80
2.78
2.75
2.74
2.72
2.66
2.55
2.50
2.46
2.42
2.41
2.40
2.32
2.22
2.21
2.17
2.00
1.98
1.94
1.74
1.74
1.71
1.64
1.47
1.44
1.36
1.35
1.29
1.27
1.22
1.18
1.12
1.04
1.01
0.97
0.95
0.94
0.93
0.91
0.84
0.83
0.80
0.70
0.69
0.64
0.64
0.60
0.50
0.39
0.37
0.36
0.36
0.35
0.33
0.30
0.28
0.28
0.24
0.24
0.24
0.22
0.22
0.22
0.21
0.20
0.18
0.14
0.13
0.13
0.10
0.07
0.06
0.05
0.03
0
198
396
594.1
792.08
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