China, US and France are the top 3 countries have the highest diplomatic posts/missions abroad, thus establishing big diplomatic footprint around the world.

Before we head below, lets understand a bit about embassy and consulates. The Embassies, Consulates and High commissions are established to extend diplomacy and assist their citizens during emergency.

So what are the differences?

  • Embassy is a diplomatic mission generally located in the capital city of another country which offers a full range of services, including consular services. Embassy and diplomatic employees have full and absolute inviolability and immunities towards host state authorities including its judiciary
  • High commission is an embassy of a Commonwealth country located in another Commonwealth country.
  • Permanent mission is a diplomatic mission to a major international organization (eg UN). All missions to the United Nations are known simply as permanent missions, while EU member states’ missions to the European Union are known as permanent representations, and the head of such a mission is typically both a permanent representative and an ambassador.
  • Consulate General is a diplomatic mission located usually other than the capital city, which provides a full range of consular services. consulate and consular employees only have limited inviolability and immunities
  • Consulate is a diplomatic mission that is similar to a consulate general, but may not provide a full range of services ( only limited service).

These are  the list of top countries that have the most diplomatic missions abroad for 2019.

Diplomatic missions

TotalEmbassy or High CommissionsConsulates / Consulate GeneralPermanent MissionsOther
China2761699683
United States2731688898
France26716189152
Japan247151651021
Russia24214485112
Turkey23514081122
Germany22415061112
Brazil22213870122
Spain21511589101
Italy2091247780
United Kingdom2051494493
India1861235454
Korea Republic of (South Korea)18311451513
Argentina157866272
Mexico157806773
Netherlands15210729124
Switzerland14610330103
Canada1449636102
Poland136883693
Greece135824391
Indonesia132943431
Hungary131863573
Portugal128714881
Chile128705161
South Africa1241061422
Belgium118822295
Australia118813142
Pakistan117853020
Czech Republic116901952
Saudi Arabia114961521
Malaysia107802331
Taiwan*107152189
Sweden10488871
Israel104772061
Norway99799101
Austria9880972
Thailand98652931
Vietnam96692241
Denmark89671462
Ireland87661461
Philippines87602340
Finland8570663
Slovak Republic8163882
Bangladesh75571620
New Zealand72501741
Sri Lanka67511321
Lithuania61401281
Slovenia5441571
North Korea5247320
Singapore50281741
Latvia4737370
Estonia4436260
Myanmar4436620
Mongolia43301111
Brunei Darussalam4235430
Nepal3932610
Lao People’s Democratic Republic39261030
Cambodia38251030
Luxembourg3726731
Iceland2516450
Bhutan95220

Source: Global Diplomacy Index 2019 / Lowy Institute