Quality of Life Comparison


If you lived in Turkmenistan instead of Belarus, you would:


be 24.1% less likely to be obese

In Belarus, 24.5% of adults are obese. In Turkmenistan, that number is 18.6% of people.

live 2.6 years less

In Belarus, the average life expectancy is 73 years (68 years for men, 79 years for women). In Turkmenistan, that number is 70 years (67 years for men, 74 years for women).


be 96.5% less likely to be live below the poverty line

In Belarus, 5.7% live below the poverty line. In Turkmenistan, however, that number is 0.2%.

be 11.0 times more likely to be unemployed

In Belarus, 1.0% of adults are unemployed. In Turkmenistan, that number is 11.0%.


have 85.4% more children

In Belarus, there are approximately 10.3 babies per 1,000 people. In Turkmenistan, there are 19.1 babies per 1,000 people.

be 10.5 times more likely to die during childbirth

In Belarus, approximately 4.0 women per 100,000 births die during labor. In Turkmenistan, 42.0 women do.

be 9.5 times more likely to die during infancy

In Belarus, approximately 3.6 children die before they reach the age of one. In Turkmenistan, on the other hand, 34.3 children do.

Basic Needs

be 74.7% less likely to have internet access

In Belarus, approximately 71.1% of the population has internet access. In Turkmenistan, about 18.0% do.

be 28.7% less likely to have access to improved drinking water

In Belarus, approximately 100% of people have improved drinking water access (100% in urban areas, and 99% in rural areas). In Turkmenistan, that number is 71% of people on average (89% in urban areas, and 54% in rural areas).


spend 40.0% less on education

Belarus spends 5.0% of its total GDP on education. Turkmenistan spends 3.0% of total GDP on education.

spend 63.2% less on healthcare

Belarus spends 5.7% of its total GDP on healthcare. In Turkmenistan, that number is 2.1% of GDP.

Turkmenistan: At a glance

Turkmenistan is a sovereign country in Central Asia, with a total land area of approximately 469,930 sq km. Present-day Turkmenistan covers territory that has been at the crossroads of civilizations for centuries. The area was ruled in antiquity by various Persian empires, and was conquered by Alexander the Great, Muslim crusaders, the Mongols, Turkic warriors, and eventually the Russians. In medieval times Merv (today known as Mary) was one of the great cities of the Islamic world and an important stop on the Silk Road. Annexed by Russia in the late 1800s, Turkmenistan later figured prominently in the anti-Bolshevik movement in Central Asia. In 1924, Turkmenistan became a Soviet republic; it achieved independence upon the dissolution of the USSR in 1991. Extensive hydrocarbon/natural gas reserves, which have yet to be fully exploited, have begun to transform the country. Turkmenistan is moving to expand its extraction and delivery projects. The Government of Turkmenistan is actively working to diversify its gas export routes beyond the still important Russian pipeline network. In 2010, new gas export pipelines that carry Turkmen gas to China and to northern Iran began operating, effectively ending the Russian monopoly on Turkmen gas exports. President for Life Saparmurat NYYAZOW died in December 2006, and Turkmenistan held its first multi-candidate presidential election in February 2007. Gurbanguly BERDIMUHAMEDOW, a deputy cabinet chairman under NYYAZOW, emerged as the country's new president; he was chosen as president again in February 2012, in an election that the OSCE said lacked the freedoms necessary to create a competitive environment.

How big is Turkmenistan compared to Belarus? See an in-depth size comparison.

The statistics on this page were calculated using the following data sources: The World Factbook.


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