Freedom Status: Free
Aggregate Score: 94
Freedom Rating: 1.0
Political Rights: 1
Civil Liberties: 1

Quick Facts

Capital: Funafuti
Population: 11,800
GDP/capita: $3,880.40
Press Freedom Status: Free
Net Freedom Status: N/A


Political Rights: 37 / 40

Civil Liberties: 57 / 60

Enele Sopoaga, the prime minister since 2013, secured a new term after March 2015 parliamentary elections, holding together his alliance of independent lawmakers. There are no political parties in Tuvalu, though no law bars their formation. Incumbents won 12 of Parliament's 15 seats.

The elections had been postponed by more than a week due to damage from a cyclone. This and other severe weather events underscored the country's vulnerability to the effects of climate change. In August, the government said it was considering the idea of buying land in Australia or New Zealand to support the population in the face of rising sea levels.

A UN committee reviewing discrimination against women in Tuvalu reported in March that the country had adopted new legislation against domestic violence in 2014 and abolished some discriminatory practices in recent years. However, it found that inequality in law and society still limited women's human rights. The constitution offers no protection against gender-based discrimination, and customary norms curtail women's role in society. Women cannot inherit the traditional title of matai, or chief, from their fathers, and few women hold prominent roles in business or government. Victims of domestic violence often refrain from reporting abuse. In December, the government said it was training counselors, religious leaders, and a specialized police unit to help address the problem.

This country report has been abridged for Freedom in the World 2016. For background information on political rights and civil liberties in Tuvalu, see Freedom in the World 2015.

Scoring Key: X / Y (Z)

X = Score Received
Y = Best Possible Score
Z = Change from Previous Year

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