Quality of Life Comparison

COMPARED TO

If you lived in Afghanistan instead of United States, you would:

Health

be 84.8% less likely to be obese


In United States, 36.2% of adults are obese as of 2016. In Afghanistan, that number is 5.5% of people as of 2016.

live 27.5 years less


In United States, the average life expectancy is 80 years (78 years for men, 82 years for women) as of 2020. In Afghanistan, that number is 53 years (51 years for men, 54 years for women) as of 2020.

Economy

pay a 49.5% lower top tax rate


United States has a top tax rate of 39.6% as of 2016. In Afghanistan, the top tax rate is 20.0% as of 2016.

make 96.7% less money


United States has a GDP per capita of $59,800 as of 2017, while in Afghanistan, the GDP per capita is $2,000 as of 2017.

be 5.4 times more likely to be unemployed


In United States, 4.4% of adults are unemployed as of 2017. In Afghanistan, that number is 23.9% as of 2017.

be 3.6 times more likely to live below the poverty line


In United States, 15.1% live below the poverty line as of 2010. In Afghanistan, however, that number is 54.5% as of 2017.

Life

have 3.0 times more children


In United States, there are approximately 12.4 babies per 1,000 people as of 2020. In Afghanistan, there are 36.7 babies per 1,000 people as of 2020.

be 33.6 times more likely to die during childbirth


In United States, approximately 19.0 women per 100,000 births die during labor as of 2017. In Afghanistan, 638.0 women do as of 2017.

be 19.7 times more likely to die during infancy


In United States, approximately 5.3 children die before they reach the age of one as of 2020. In Afghanistan, on the other hand, 104.3 children do as of 2020.

Basic Needs

be 15.9% less likely to have access to electricity


In United States, approximately 100% of the population has electricity access as of 2016. In Afghanistan, 84% of the population do as of 2012.

be 84.5% less likely to have internet access


In United States, approximately 87.3% of the population has internet access as of 2018. In Afghanistan, about 13.5% do as of 2018.

be 29.1% less likely to have access to improved drinking water


In United States, approximately 99% of people have improved drinking water access (100% in urban areas, and 97% in rural areas) as of 2017. In Afghanistan, that number is 70% of people on average (96% in urban areas, and 61% in rural areas) as of 2017.

Expenditures

spend 18.0% less on education


United States spends 5.0% of its total GDP on education as of 2014. Afghanistan spends 4.1% of total GDP on education as of 2017.

Afghanistan: At a glance

Afghanistan is a sovereign country in South Asia, with a total land area of approximately 652,230 sq km. Ahmad Shah DURRANI unified the Pashtun tribes and founded Afghanistan in 1747. The country served as a buffer between the British and Russian Empires until it won independence from notional British control in 1919. A brief experiment in democracy ended in a 1973 coup and a 1978 communist counter-coup. The Soviet Union invaded in 1979 to support the tottering Afghan communist regime, touching off a long and destructive war. The USSR withdrew in 1989 under relentless pressure by internationally supported anti-communist mujahedin rebels. A series of subsequent civil wars saw Kabul finally fall in 1996 to the Taliban, a hardline Pakistani-sponsored movement that emerged in 1994 to end the country's civil war and anarchy. Following the 11 September 2001 terrorist attacks, a US, Allied, and anti-Taliban Northern Alliance military action toppled the Taliban for sheltering Osama BIN LADIN. The UN-sponsored Bonn Conference in 2001 established a process for political reconstruction that included the adoption of a new constitution, a presidential election in 2004, and National Assembly elections in 2005. In December 2004, Hamid KARZAI became the first democratically elected president of Afghanistan and the National Assembly was inaugurated the following December. KARZAI was re-elected in August 2009 for a second term. Despite gains toward building a stable central government, a resurgent Taliban and continuing provincial instability - particularly in the south and the east - remain serious challenges for the Afghan Government.

How big is Afghanistan compared to United States? See an in-depth size comparison.


The statistics on this page were calculated using the following data sources: The World Factbook, Afghanistan Revenue Department, Internal Revenue Service.

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