List of countries by incarceration rate

This is an alphabetical list of countries and some dependent territories and subnational areas which lays out the incarceration rate of each.[1]

Prison population rates from World Prison Brief. See date on map.

Incarceration rates and counts


The World Prison Brief (WPB) may or may not incorporate juvenile incarceration numbers into the totals for each country, dependent territory, or subnational area. The data below is the latest available at WPB at the time the data was copied here. See the individual WPB country and subnational area pages for more info on data, dates, juvenile numbers, and much more.[1]

* indicates "Incarceration in LOCATION" or "Crime in LOCATION" links.
Note: This table fully updated July 26, 2023. Some individual countries since then.
Note: See N/A definition. "Not available" in this case.

Territories or other subnational areas


To keep the above chart more compact the country names were stripped from the territories or other subnational areas.[11] Here is that info as provided by World Prison Brief:

Territory or other subnational area.  
  American Samoa (USA)
  Anguilla (United Kingdom)
  Aruba (Netherlands)
  Bermuda (United Kingdom)
  Bosnia and Herzegovina: Federation
  Bosnia and Herzegovina: Republika Srpska
  Cayman Islands (United Kingdom)
  Cook Islands (New Zealand)
  Curaçao (Netherlands)
  Faeroe Islands (Denmark)
  French Guiana/Guyane (France)
  French Polynesia (France)
  Gibraltar (United Kingdom)
  Greenland (Denmark)
  Guadeloupe (France)
  Guam (USA)
  Guernsey (United Kingdom)
  Hong Kong (China)
  Jersey (United Kingdom)
  Macau (China)
  Martinique (France)
  Mayotte (France)
  New Caledonia (France)
  Northern Mariana Islands (USA)
  Puerto Rico (USA)
  Reunion (France)
  Sint Maarten (Netherlands)
  United Kingdom: England & Wales
  United Kingdom: Northern Ireland
  United Kingdom: Scotland
  United States of America
  Virgin Islands (United Kingdom)
  Virgin Islands (USA)

See also



  1. ^ See info about additional detainees, and alleged detainees, at Immigration detention in Australia and Punishment in Australia.
  2. ^ See info about additional detainees, and alleged detainees, at Re-education through labor, Laogai, and Xinjiang internment camps.
  3. ^ See info about additional detainees, and alleged detainees, at Human rights in Cuba. Also at Law enforcement in Cuba.
  4. ^ a b c See also #Territories or other subnational areas higher up. The data source (World Prison Brief) (WPB) does not list an incarceration rate for the United Kingdom as a whole, with its territories, and other subnational areas, etc.. In the main table see England and Wales, Northern Ireland, Scotland, Anguilla, Bermuda, Cayman Islands, Gibraltar, Guernsey, Isle of Man, Jersey, British Virgin Islands. WPB has pages for each of them.[4] A rate for the United Kingdom as a whole can be calculated by adding up their prison populations, and then dividing by their combined population.
  5. ^ World Prison Brief has limited info on Eritrea.[5]
  6. ^ World Prison Brief has limited info on North Korea.[6] See info about detainees, and alleged detainees, at Prisons in North Korea.
  7. ^ World Prison Brief has limited info on Somalia.[7]
  8. ^ The incarceration rate (per 100,000 population of all ages) is for inmates held in adult facilities in the United States. It does not include inmates in the custody of correctional facilities operated by departments of corrections in U.S. territories (American Samoa, Guam, and the U.S. Virgin Islands) and U.S. commonwealths (Northern Mariana Islands and Puerto Rico).[8][9] In addition, there were 36,479 juveniles in juvenile detention in 2019.[10] For more juvenile detention information and numbers, see Youth incarceration in the United States. The incarceration rate in the U.S. varies greatly by U.S. state. See: List of U.S. states and territories by incarceration and correctional supervision rate. That article also lists male and female incarceration rates by state. See also: Incarceration of women in the United States.


  1. ^ a b Highest to Lowest. World Prison Brief (WPB). Use dropdown menu to choose lists of countries by region, or the whole world. Use menu to select highest-to-lowest lists of prison population totals, prison population rates, percentage of pre-trial detainees / remand prisoners, percentage of female prisoners, percentage of foreign prisoners, and occupancy rate. Column headings in WPB tables can be clicked to reorder columns lowest to highest, or alphabetically. For detailed information for each country click on any country name in lists. The individual country pages also give the date of the data. See also the WPB main data page and click on the map links and/or the sidebar links to get to the region and country desired. Please update the tables here only from this WPB source.
  2. ^ Highest to Lowest - Prison Population Rate. From World Prison Brief
  3. ^ Highest to Lowest - Prison Population Total. From: World Prison Brief.
  4. ^ Search of World Prison Brief website for "United Kingdom". It pulls up the pages for England & Wales, Scotland, Northern Ireland, Cayman Islands, Jersey, Virgin Islands, Isle of Man, Guernsey, Gibraltar, etc.. World Prison Brief.
  5. ^ Eritrea. World Prison Brief.
  6. ^ North Korea. By World Prison Brief.
  7. ^ Somalia. World Prison Brief.
  8. ^ United States of America. By World Prison Brief.
  9. ^ Correctional Populations in the United States, 2016 Archived 2018-06-12 at the Wayback Machine (NCJ 251211). Published April 2018 by U.S. Bureau of Justice Statistics (BJS). By Danielle Kaeble and Mary Cowhig, BJS statisticians. See PDF Archived 2018-06-16 at the Wayback Machine. Appendix table 1 on page 11 has rates and counts by state. See page 1 "highlights" section for the "1 in ..." numbers. See table 4 on page 4 for a timeline of nationwide incarceration rates. See appendix table 3 on page 13, for "Persons held in custody in state or federal prisons or in local jails, 2000, 2010, and 2015–2016". That table also has incarceration rates. See appendix table 2 on page 12 for the number or persons incarcerated in territorial prisons, military facilities, and jails in Indian country.
  10. ^ Sickmund, M., Sladky, T.J., Kang, W., & Puzzanchera, C.. "Easy Access to the Census of Juveniles in Residential Placement. Office of Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention. Click "National Crosstabs" at the top, and then choose the census years. Click "Show table" to get the total number of juvenile inmates for those years. Or go here for all years. And here.
  11. ^ {{Flagg}}. This flag template removes the names of the countries behind territories, subnational areas, etc.. Other flag templates (such as {{flaglist}}) do not do that. But that template can not create specialized country links. See Help:Tables and locations#Adding specialized country/state links.