Overseas Territories and Dependencies of the World
An overseas territory or dependency is a region with ties abroad to a sovereign nation—not a completely independent state, but also not a constituent part or administrative subdivision of the parent country.
Their histories vary, but most are tied to either “modern” colonialism from the 1400s onwards, or wars from the 19th and 20th centuries. Many of these regions still depend on their parent country to some capacity for economic, military, and diplomatic affairs.
This graphic by Pranav Gavali maps the overseas territories of various countries, using a variety of sources including WorldAtlas, Statista, and official country releases.
Where are the World’s Overseas Territories and Dependencies?
There are a total of 71 overseas territories listed on the map spread across the world.
It excludes territories claims in Antarctica, which are currently governed by the 1959 Antarctic Treaty. As an overseas map, it also excludes territories sharing a border, or that are part of a larger state or province (like Germany’s Heligoland, part of the state of Schleswig-Holstein).
Each region has its own unique present-day status. Some are “autonomous territories” or “constituent countries,” while some are administered almost entirely as part of the parent country.
|Sovereign||Overseas Territory / Dependency||Region|
|🇦🇺 Australia||Ashmore and Cartier Islands||Indian Ocean|
|🇦🇺 Australia||Christmas Island||Indian Ocean|
|🇦🇺 Australia||Cocos (Keeling) Islands||Indian Ocean|
|🇦🇺 Australia||Coral Sea Islands||Pacific Ocean|
|🇦🇺 Australia||Heard & McDonald Islands||Indian Ocean|
|🇦🇺 Australia||Norfolk Island||Pacific Ocean|
|🇩🇰 Denmark||Faroe Islands||Atlantic Ocean|
|🇩🇰 Denmark||Greenland||Atlantic Ocean /
|🇫🇷 France||Bassas da India||Indian Ocean|
|🇫🇷 France||Clipperton Island||Pacific Ocean|
|🇫🇷 France||Europa Island||Indian Ocean|
|🇫🇷 France||French Guiana||South America|
|🇫🇷 France||French Polynesia||Pacific Ocean|
|🇫🇷 France||Glorioso Islands||Indian Ocean|
|🇫🇷 France||Juan de Nova Island||Indian Ocean|
|🇫🇷 France||Mayotte||Indian Ocean|
|🇫🇷 France||New Caledonia||Pacific Ocean|
|🇫🇷 France||Réunion||Indian Ocean|
|🇫🇷 France||Saint Barthélemy||Caribbean|
|🇫🇷 France||Saint Pierre and Miquelon||Atlantic Ocean|
|🇫🇷 France||Tromelin Island||Indian Ocean|
|🇫🇷 France||Wallis and Futuna||Pacific Ocean|
|🇳🇱 Netherlands||Sint Eustatius||Caribbean|
|🇳🇱 Netherlands||Sint Maarten||Caribbean|
|🇳🇿 New Zealand||Cook Islands||Pacific Ocean|
|🇳🇿 New Zealand||Niue||Pacific Ocean|
|🇳🇿 New Zealand||Tokelau||Pacific Ocean|
|🇳🇴 Norway||Bouvet Island||Atlantic Ocean|
|🇳🇴 Norway||Jan Mayen||Arctic Ocean|
|🇳🇴 Norway||Peter I Island||Southern Ocean|
|🇳🇴 Norway||Svalbard||Arctic Ocean|
|🇵🇹 Portugal||Azores||Atlantic Ocean|
|🇵🇹 Portugal||Madeira||Atlantic Ocean|
|🇬🇧 United Kingdom||Akrotiri (British Forces)||Cyprus /
|🇬🇧 United Kingdom||Anguilla||Caribbean|
|🇬🇧 United Kingdom||Bermuda||Atlantic Ocean|
|🇬🇧 United Kingdom||British Indian Ocean Territory||Indian Ocean|
|🇬🇧 United Kingdom||British Virgin Islands||Caribbean|
|🇬🇧 United Kingdom||Cayman Islands||Caribbean|
|🇬🇧 United Kingdom||Dhekelia (British Forces)||Cyprus /
|🇬🇧 United Kingdom||Falkland Islands (Islas Malvinas)||Atlantic Ocean|
|🇬🇧 United Kingdom||Gibraltar||Europe|
|🇬🇧 United Kingdom||Guernsey (Channel Island)||Atlantic Ocean|
|🇬🇧 United Kingdom||Isle of Man||Atlantic Ocean|
|🇬🇧 United Kingdom||Jersey (Channel Island)||Atlantic Ocean|
|🇬🇧 United Kingdom||Montserrat||Caribbean|
|🇬🇧 United Kingdom||Pitcairn, Henderson, Ducie & Oeno Islands||Pacific Ocean|
|🇬🇧 United Kingdom||Saint Helena, Ascension & Tristan da cunha||Atlantic Ocean|
|🇬🇧 United Kingdom||South Georgia & South Sandwich Islands||Atlantic Ocean|
|🇬🇧 United Kingdom||Turks & Caicos Islands||Caribbean|
|🇺🇸 United States||American Samoa||Pacific Ocean|
|🇺🇸 United States||Baker Island||Pacific Ocean|
|🇺🇸 United States||Guam||Pacific Ocean|
|🇺🇸 United States||Howland Island||Pacific Ocean|
|🇺🇸 United States||Jarvis Island||Pacific Ocean|
|🇺🇸 United States||Johnston Atoll||Pacific Ocean|
|🇺🇸 United States||Kingman Reef||Pacific Ocean|
|🇺🇸 United States||Midway Islands / Atoll||Pacific Ocean|
|🇺🇸 United States||Navassa Island||Caribbean|
|🇺🇸 United States||Northern Mariana Islands||Pacific Ocean|
|🇺🇸 United States||Palmyra Atoll||Pacific Ocean|
|🇺🇸 United States||Puerto Rico||Caribbean|
|🇺🇸 United States||U.S. Virgin Islands||Caribbean|
|🇺🇸 United States||Wake Island||Pacific Ocean|
More than half of the overseas territories were in either the Pacific Ocean (21) or the Caribbean (18). The United States by itself accounts for 11 of the territories spread out across the North and South Pacific.
Another highlight is that the majority of these regions are islands located quite a distance from their parent countries. One of the furthest is New Caledonia, a French territory around 17,000 km away from European France.
They also vary mightily in terms of size, population, and political apparatus. For example, the U.S. territory of Puerto Rico has 3 million people, and its own constitution and elected government, while another U.S. territory of Johnston Atoll is tiny and entirely uninhabited.
Here’s a brief look at some of the best known territories on the list:
First colonized by Spain in the 16th century, the U.S. occupied the North Pacific islands in the aftermath of the Spanish–American war (along with Puerto Rico and the Philippines). The island was briefly occupied by Japan during World War II—attacked at the same time as Pearl Harbor—before being recaptured by the United States. It currently has an elected legislature and governor and is home to a large U.S. military base.
When Bermuda was first discovered in the 1500s by the Spanish in the Caribbean, and then a century later by the English, there was no Indigenous population documented. At first it was used by passing ships as a replenishment spot, but the English eventually settled it in the 17th century. It now has a constitution, a parliament, and a governor who exercises power on behalf of the British head of state.
Unlike others on this list, the Cook Islands in the South Pacific is not only self-governing but also runs its own foreign and defense policy and is in “free association” with New Zealand. While Cook Islanders are New Zealand citizens, with the same monarch as head of state, they are also separate Cook Island nationals.
This island in the Indian Ocean 700 km off the coast of Madagascar was first settled by the French in the 17th century, though it was discovered earlier by the Portuguese. It is one of the many French Overseas Territories that together are home to 2.6 million people.
Countries With the Most Overseas Territories and Dependencies
Depending on if you count island territories independently or group them together, the final accounting of overseas territories and dependencies by country can vary.
But by most official designations of territories, the UK and France are tied with 17 overseas territories.
|Country||Overseas Territories & Dependences|
|🇬🇧 United Kingdom||17|
|🇺🇸 United States||14|
|🇳🇿 New Zealand||3|
Unsurprisingly, two great empires of the past—Britian and France—still have largest remnants of their past breadth. The British still maintain many ties to several territories in the Caribbean (formerly the British West Indies) while French influence stretches from the Pacific to South America.
And consider that this list reflects current status as of 2023. Former colonies that would have been counted in the past include British India (which became India, Pakistan, and Bangladesh) and French Indochina (which became Cambodia, Laos, and Vietnam).
As for the U.S. at #3, though the majority of its territories are in the Pacific, they were acquired well before World War II. In addition to islands ceded by Spain, the rest were unclaimed islands incorporated as part of the Guano Islands Act of 1856, which sought sources of guano—feces of bats and seabirds used as agricultural fertilizer and for gunpowder production.
Editor’s note: The original graphic and article included a source which had incorrect sizes and listed Spain as having two territories. The graphic, article, and relevant tables and overall numbers have been updated.
This article was published as a part of Visual Capitalist's Creator Program, which features data-driven visuals from some of our favorite Creators around the world.
Mapped: Unemployed Workers vs. Job Openings, by U.S. State
On average, there are 75 workers available for every 100 job openings across the country. Here’s how it varies by state.
Mapped: Unemployed Workers vs. Job Openings, by U.S. State
In the United States, there were about 75 workers available for every 100 job openings as of July 2023. This means there is a significant gap between labor and jobs available, but also many opportunities present in some states for potential job seekers.
This map, using data from the U.S. Chamber of Commerce, showcases the number of available workers per 100 job openings in each U.S. state.
Note: Available workers are unemployed workers who are in the labor force but do not have a job, have looked for one in the previous four weeks, and are currently able and available to work. Job openings are simply all unfulfilled positions that offer available work.
Workers and Job Openings by State
The below table lists out the number of unemployed workers per 100 jobs in every state.
Higher ratios, such as 110 workers per 100 job openings, mean there is more competition for each job opening in that state. Lower ratios suggest that it is harder to find workers in a given state.
|Rank||State||Available Workers per 100 Job Openings|
|#T31||District of Columbia||55.0|
While states like New Jersey and California have more workers that they know what to do with, states like North Dakota have a 0.35 ratio of people to jobs, potentially tipping the balance of power to job seekers.
Over the last three years, job openings have increased the most in the state of Georgia, where there were only 0.57 people available for every open role in July. But despite growth in open positions, unemployment has hardly changed over the last year, wavering around 3%.
The Reason for the Gap
“If every unemployed person in the country found a job, we would still have 4 million open jobs.”– U.S. Chamber of Commerce
According to the U.S. Chamber of Commerce, the main driver of the current labor shortage was the COVID-19 pandemic, forcing more than 100,000 businesses to close temporarily and resulting in millions losing their jobs.
Subsequent government support for those who lost work and other subsidies made it easier for people to stay home and out of the workforce. A Chamber of Commerce survey found that 1-in-5 people have changed their work style since the pandemic, with 17% having retired, 19% having transitioned to a homemaker role, and another 14% working only part time.
The industries with the highest unemployment rates are also those that have added the most jobs, with leisure and hospitality experiencing the highest rates (5.1%) just ahead of wholesale and retail trade (4.4%).
Overall, though the job marker has started to cool somewhat, hiring is still outpacing quit rates. The national quit rate in July 2023 was 3.8%, compared to a hiring rate of 4%. And with 9.8 million job openings in the U.S., there should be ample opportunities for job seekers.
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