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10 Countries With The Most Slaves While many believe slavery is an issue of the past, it remains a real, yet largely hidden, problem.

An estimated 35.8 million people are enslaved worldwide, according to a recent report by the Walk Free Foundation, a human rights organization. Modern day slavery differs from traditional slavery. In traditional slavery, which is illegal in each of the 167 countries reviewed in the 2014 Global Slavery Index, people were considered legal property. However, modern slavery, which is defined as possession or control of a person that deprives them of their rights with the intention of exploiting them, exists in each of the 167 nations. In some countries, the number ray ban large of enslaved people is especially high. Five countries alone account for 61% of all people believed to be living in modern slavery, and 70% of all enslaved people live in 10 countries. India had the highest number of people living in modern slavery, at over 14 million. Based on figures from the 2014 Global Slavery Index, these are the countries with the most slaves. Many of the nations on this list are also among the world's most populous, which certainly plays a role in the high numbers of slaves. Seven of the world's 10 most highly populated nations are among the countries with the most people living in slavery. However, size alone does not account for the high levels of slavery in these nations. For instance, the United States is the world's third most populous country, yet it has far fewer people enslaved than any other similarly large country. For instance, more than 1% of the populations of India, Pakistan, and the Democratic Republic of the Congo were deemed by the Walk Free Foundation to be enslaved, a higher percentage than in most nations. In Uzbekistan, 4% of all people live in modern slavery, the second highest percentage in the world. Populations that are vulnerable to slavery often reside in countries where government is not stable or discrimination is prevalent, according to the Walk Free Foundation. Fiona David, executive director of global research for the foundation, summarized the role of political instability in driving vulnerability, telling 24/7 Wall St., "In conflict situations, the rule of law breaks down. People no longer have access to the police or other services to protect them." Similarly, when discrimination is rampant, people also lack access to important protective services. Vulnerability to slavery is also shaped by a country's economic and social development. In fact, the nations with the highest numbers of people living in slavery often had low scores on the Human Development Index (HDI). Seven of the 10 countries on our list had low HDI scores, falling outside the top 100 nations measured out of a total of 187 countries. One country that scored especially poorly was the Democratic Republic of the Congo, where a lack of stability has hampered development and, in turn, made people vulnerable to slavery. Corruption also frequently hampers government policies and other efforts to curb modern slavery. According to David, people are more vulnerable when the rule of law is not strong enough to protect them, "and, of course, corruption breaks down the rule of law." Anti corruption advocacy group Transparency International rated all but one of the countries on this list worse than a majority of countries on its 2013 Corruption Perceptions ray ban 8301 Index. To identify the countries where the most people live in modern slavery, 24/7 Wall St. reviewed figures from The Global Slavery Index 2014 on the estimated population living in slavery in each country. The index also provided the approximate percentages of a country's population living in modern slavery. We also reviewed data from the United Nations Development Programme's Human Development Index (HDI). Economic data, such as gross domestic product (GDP) per capita, came from the International Monetary Fund (IMF). Data on corruption is from the 2013 Corruption Perceptions Index, compiled by Transparency International. These are the countries with the most slaves. > Est. population in modern slavery: 475,300 > Pct. population in modern slavery: 0.71% (44th highest) > Human Development Index Score: 0.722 (78th worst) > GDP per capita 2013: (80th highest) According to the Global Slavery Index, there were an estimated 475,300 Thai residents living in modern slavery, the 10th highest worldwide. Like many other countries in the Asia Pacific region where nearly two ray ban 3342 thirds of the world's modern slaves live Thailand's economy relies heavily on low skilled work, especially in fishing, and garment industries. In addition, migrant workers from neighboring countries make up a sizable portion of Thailand's workforce and are perhaps even more likely to enter into forced labor arrangements or be sexually exploited. While the Thai government has made efforts to address the problem of modern slavery, many of its measures have been poorly implemented or become bogged down by high levels of corruption. > Est. population in modern slavery: 680,900 > Pct. population in modern slavery: 0.44% (59th highest) > Human Development Index Score: 0.558 (42nd worst) > GDP per capita 2013: (37th lowest) According to the Walk Free Foundation, the collapse of an eight story garment factory last year, which killed more than 1,000 workers, "brought to light the reality of labour exploitation in the sector including the underpayment of wages, excessive work hours, and unsafe facilities" in Bangladesh's garment industry. While it is unknown what proportion of low skilled Bangladeshi garment workers are actually living in modern slavery, the incident highlighted the plight of poorly treated citizens working in under regulated and dangerous environments. Bangladesh's garment industry has grown rapidly in recent years, and the bulk of the output is ray ban sunglasses buy destined for Western countries. Corruption likely exacerbates the issue, as it does in other countries where high numbers of residents are living in modern slavery. Transparency International rated Bangladesh worse than a majority of countries for corruption. > Est. population in modern slavery: 714,100 > Pct. population in modern slavery: 0.29% (66th lowest) > Human Development Index Score: 0.684 (66th worst) > GDP per capita 2013: (69th lowest) Indonesia is one of the world's most populous countries, with nearly 250 million citizens. It is also home to an estimated 714,100 in modern slavery, more than in most nations. According to the Walk Free Foundation, "Modern slavery in Indonesia is characterized by forced labour in domestic work, agriculture, and the fishing sector." In particular, the report identifies the production of palm oil as problematic, stating it is often produced by workers who are trapped on plantations. Palm oil is used in many products Americans consume, from lipstick to ice cream. Indonesia, like many developing countries, has experienced relatively rapid growth, as well as high inflation, relative to highly developed countries. > GDP per capita 2013: (3rd lowest) Despite a strong economy, characterized by 8% GDP growth in 2013, the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC) is still among the least developed countries in the world. The DRC was the site of a massively bloody war involving numerous African nations between 1998 and 2003, which cost millions of lives. Various armed conflicts continue today as well. The Walk Free Foundation notes that "Decades of political instability and a violent civil war have left many citizens of the Democratic Republic of the Congo vulnerable to modern slavery.

" Another factor is the country's rich resource base, as slaves are known to be used in the mining of commodities such as diamonds, copper, and gold. The government's response to slavery has also been inadequate, earning a C on this year's Global Slavery Index. According to Transparency International, the DRC was one of the worst scoring nations on the Corruption Perceptions Index 2013.


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