Two countries in world that are doubly landlocked

A doubly landlocked country is a country that is surrounded by already landlocked countries. There are only two such countries in the world. Uzbekistan and Liechtenstein are the only two countries that are surrounded by other landlocked countries.

A country being landlocked means that it does not have a sea or ocean coastline. There are several dozens of such countries, so it is not an extraordinary position. A double-landlocked country means that the given country has only landlocked neighbors. In other words, you have to cross two borders to get to a sea or ocean. This is a much more unique feature. There are only two such countries currently on the globe.

Being landlocked has a significant impact on a country’s shipping industry. In countries that lack direct access to a sea or ocean, businesses must typically resort to shipping their product by rail, road, or air rather than over the water. This can add cost and make it difficult for businesses to remain competitive in the global marketplace.

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The first one is Liechtenstein, situated in the Alps of Central Europe, nested between two landlocked countries: Austria and Switzerland. This tiny little country gained its double-landlocked status after the creation of independent Austria in 1918.

The other country with only landlocked neighbors is Uzbekistan in Central Asia. Surrounded by Kazakhstan, Turkmenistan, Afghanistan, Tajikistan, and Kyrgyzstan. Uzbekistan gained its independence in 1991, giving it the most recent double landlocked country label. The country was part of the great Soviet Union before, which had a long coastline itself. It also needs to be mentioned that Kazakhstan and Turkmenistan have a coastline on the Caspian Sea. However, it is considered to be a lake geographically, the largest lake on Earth.

Small confusion in the feast

Uzbekistan’s status as a double-landlocked country is disputed by some geographers because two of the countries that border it—Iran and Turkmenistan—also touch the Caspian Sea. Despite its name, most experts consider the Caspian Sea a massive lake rather than a sea. It doesn’t drain into a larger body of water and its brackish water is only one-third as salty as most oceans and seas.

If the Caspian remains classified as a lake, Uzbekistan will remain double-landlocked. However, if the Caspian is ever reclassified as a true sea based upon its immense size and slight salinity, Iran and Turkmenistan will no longer be considered landlocked and Uzbekistan will revert from double-landlocked to simply landlocked.

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