Chronology of female suffrage in the world

(The presented chronology indicates solely national (and not regional) adquisions of voting rights by women in the world.)

From the end of the 19th century until 1920

Voting rights granted for women in several European and English-speaking countries, as well as in Central Asia.

Interesting facts:

  • In the Netherlands women could stand for election 2 years before being granted the right to vote.
  • First women in Belgium allowed to vote were mothers or widows of soldiers dead in the IWW or female political prisonniers kept by the enemy.
  • Although Australia and Canada granted voting rights to women in the beginning of the 20th century, for several decades they excluded aboriginal women.
  • In 1907 only women who were taxpayers could vote in Norway.
1893 New Zealand (right to vote)

1919 – Right to stand for election

1902 Australia

1962 – right to vote for aboriginal women

1906 Finland
1907 Norway (for female taxpayers only)

1913 – voting rights for all women

1915 Denmark, Iceland
1917 Canada (right to vote – limited to relatives of militaries)

1918 – for all women, except aboriginal women who were granted with voting rights in 1950

1920 – right to stand for election

Netherlands (right to stand for election)

1919 – right to vote

1918 Austria, Estonia, Georgia, Germany, Hungary, Kyrgyzstan, Latvia, Lithuania, Poland, Russian Federation

Ireland (for women over 30 years old)

1928 – voting rights for all women

United Kingdom (for women over 30 years old)

1928 – voting rights for all women

1919 Belarus, Luxembourg, Ukraine

Belgium (right to vote for widows or mothers of dead in the I WW soldiers or for political prisonniers kept captive by the enemy during the war)

1921 – right to stand for election for those women

1948 – voting rights for all women

Sweden (granted)

1921 – effective voting rights for women

1920 Albania, Czech Republic, Iceland, Slovakia, United States of America

1920 – 1950

Female suffrage mainly granted in the rest of Europe and Latin America. 

Interesting facts:

  • Ecuador as the first country in Latin America granted voting rights to a restricted group of women in 1929. Three years after, Uruguay established voting privileges for all women, becoming thus the first country to grant it universally.
  • South Africa was the first African country to grant women with voting rights (1930). However, only white women could enjoy them, while black women had to wait until 1994 to exerce those rights.
  • Initially, in Portugal only women with secondary and higher education could vote (in contrast, men only had to know how to read and write).
1921 Armenia, Azerbaijan, Georgia
1924 Kazakhstan, Mongolia, Tajikistan, Saint Lucia
1927 Turkmenistan
1929 Ecuador (restricted conditions)

1946 – voting rights for all women

1930 South Africa (only for White women)

1984 – voting rights for “colored and indian” women

1994 – voting rights for black women  

Turkey (right to vote) 1934 – right to stand for election

1931 Chile (right limited to municipal elections)

1949 – voting rights extended to legislative elections

Portugal (only for women with secondary or higher education)

1934 – enlarged, yet still limited voting rights

1979 – full voting rights for women

Spain, Sri Lanka

1932 Brazil, Maldives, Thailand, Uruguay
1934 Cuba
1935 Myanmar (right to vote)

1946 – right to stand for election

1937 Philippines
1938 Bolivia (right to vote granted to literate women with a high level of income)

1952 – right to vote and to stand for election for all women


1939 El Salvador (right to vote)

1961 – right to stand for election

1941 Panama (limited to women with a university degree)

1946 – voting rights for all women

1942 Dominican Republic
1944 Bulgaria, France, Jamaica
1945 Croatia, Indonesia, Italy, Senegal, Slovenia

Togo Guyana (right to stand for election)

1953 – voting rights for women

Japan (elections for the House of Representatives)

1947 – elections for the House of Counselors

1946 Cameroon, D.P.R. of Korea, Guatemala, Liberia, Macedonia, Trinidad and Tobago, Venezuela, Viet Nam
1947 Argentina, Malta, Pakistan, Singapore

Mexico (right to vote)

1953 – right to stand for election

Tuvalu (right to vote)

1967 – right to stand for election

1948 Israel, Niger, Republic of Korea, Seychelles, Suriname
1949 Bosnia and Herzegovina, China, Costa Rica,

Syria (right to vote only for women with an education grade)

1953 – voting rights for all women

1950 Barbados, Haiti, India

1950 – 1980

Voting rights granted over all by women in Africa and Pacific islands. 

Interesting facts:

  • In Papua New Guinea women could stand for election one year before even being able to vote.
  • For 5 years, during the Taliban rules, women in Afghanistan were taken off their voting rights.
1951 Antigua and Barbuda, Dominica, Grenada, Nepal, Saint Kitts and Nevis, Saint Vincent and the Grenadines
1952 Côte d’Ivoire, Greece, Lebanon
1953 Bhutan
1954 Belize, Colombia, Ghana
1955 Cambodia, Eritrea, Ethiopia, Honduras, Nicaragua, Peru
1956 Benin, Comoros, Egypt, Gabon, Mali, Mauritius, Somalia
1957 Malaysia

Zimbabwe (right to vote)

1978 – right to stand for election

1958 Burkina Faso, Chad, Guinea, Laos, Nigeria (South)
1959 Madagascar, Tunisia, Tanzania

San Marino (right to vote)

1973 – right to stand for election

1960 Cyprus, Gambia, Tonga
1961 Bahamas, Burundi, Malawi, Mauritania, Paraguay, Rwanda, Sierra Leone
1962 Algeria, Monaco, Uganda, Zambia
1963 Congo, Equatorial Guinea, Fiji, Iran, Kenya, Morocco, Libya

Papua New Guinea (right to stand for election)

1964 – right to vote

Afghanistan (revoked by Talibans from 1996 to 2001)

1964 Sudan
1965 Bostwana, Lesotho
1967 Kiribati, Yemen Democratic

Republic of the Congo (right to vote)

1970 – right to stand for election

1968 Nauru, Swaziland
1970 Yemen

Andora (right to vote)

1973 – right to stand for election

1971 Switzerland
1972 Bangladesh
1973 Bahrain
1974 Jordan, Solomon Islands
1975 Angola, Cape Verde, Mozambique, Sao Tome and Principe, Vanuatu
1977 Guinea Bissau
1978 Nigeria (North), Moldova
1979 Marshall Islands, Palau
1980 Iraq

1981 – nowadays

Interesting facts:

  • Lichtenstein is the last European country to grand women voting rights. There is still one European country that does not allow women to vote – Vaticane.
  • Saudi women are promised to obtain voting privileges in 2015.
1984 Liechtenstein
1986 Central African Republic
1989 Namibia
1990 Samoa
2005 Kuwait

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