13 world leaders ranked by how tall they are

German Chancellor Angela Merkel with US President Donald Trump and other world leaders on the second day of the G7 summit in June 2018.

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German Chancellor Angela Merkel with US President Donald Trump and other world leaders on the second day of the G7 summit in June 2018.
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Jesco Denzel /Bundesregierung via Getty Images

  • World leaders vary widely in height, though many try to project the image of being taller than they are.
  • We often see them photographed together, allowing us to see just how much their heights can vary.
  • Here’s how they stack up, from the 6-feet, 6-inch (198 centimeter) president of Serbia to the 5-foot-3 (160 centimeter) president of Ireland.
  • Visit Business Insider’s homepage for more stories.

Studies have shown that voters lean toward taller politicians, viewing them as better suited to leadership.

But the world’s leaders fill the whole spectrum, with some topping 6 feet and others closer to 5 feet tall.

World leaders don’t always publicize their height, which means estimating often comes down to comparing them as they stand beside one another or with other celebrities whose heights are public.

Some world leaders even go out of their way to seem taller than they are, so their real height can be something of a surprise.

Read more: Politicians are using their shoes as a secret weapon to appear more powerful

Here’s the height of 13 world leaders and how they compare with their counterparts’. They are ranked from shortest to tallest.


Ireland’s Michael D. Higgins: 5 feet 3 inches (160 centimeters)

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Gareth Copley/Getty Images

The Irish president’s smaller stature is exaggerated when he hangs out with his giant dogs, Bród and Síoda.

Source: DailyEdge.ie


North Korea’s Kim Jong Un: Between 5-foot-7 (170 cm) and 5-foot-4 (163 cm)

The North Korean leader is often reported to be 5-foot-7, but it is unclear where that information comes from.

He appears to be shorter than South Korean President Moon Jae-in (pictured above), who is 5-foot-6, but experts also think Kim is often pictured wearing shoes that make him seem taller, which could mean he could be as short as 5-foot-4.


Angela Merkel: 5-foot-5 (165 cm)

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Merkel with world leaders at the 2018 G7 summit.
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Jesco Denzel /Bundesregierung via Getty Images

The chancellor of Germany is still known for staring down world leaders much larger than her, including her face-off with President Donald Trump in the picture above.

Source: The Guardian


New Zealand’s Jacinda Ardern: 5-foot-7 (170 cm)

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Ardern at Parliament on November 8, 2017, in Wellington, New Zealand.
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Hagen Hopkins/Getty Images

Source: Vogue


Russia’s Vladimir Putin: 5-foot-7 (170 cm)

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Putin at a meeting with members of the Security Council at the Novo-Ogaryovo state residence outside Moscow.
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Reuters

Source: The Guardian


Hungary’s Viktor Orbán: 5-foot-8 (173 cm)

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Merkel and Orbán in 2015.
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Reuters

Source: The Guardian


China’s Xi Jinping: 5-foot-9 (175 cm)

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Xi in 2016 with Putin in the background.
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Wang Zhou – Pool/Getty Images

China’s president is taller than all of his immediate predecessors.


The UK’s Boris Johnson: 5-foot-9 (175 cm)

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Getty

Source: The Express


Japan’s Shinzo Abe: 5-foot-10 (178 cm)

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Abe with Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau in 2016.
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Reuters/Toru Hanai

Source: Daily Mail


Turkey’s Recep Tayyip Erdogan: 6 foot (183 cm)

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Erdogan and Putin in Istanbul in November 2018.
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BULENT KILIC/AFP/Getty Images

Source: Dogan News Agency


Canada’s Justin Trudeau: 6-foot-2 (188 cm)

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Trudeau and US President Donald Trump at a G7 meeting in Canada in June 2018.
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Leon Neal/Getty Images

The Canadian stands at 6-foot-2, but many have pointed out that he looks taller than US President Donald Trump even though Trump is listed as being taller.


The US’s Donald Trump: 6-foot-3 (191 cm), or 6-foot-2 (188 cm)

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Reuters

During his presidency, Trump has frequently mocked other politicians for being shorter than him.

Trump’s official medical report listed him as 6-foot-3, but his earlier driver’s license had him listed as 6-foot-2, the UK newspaper The Guardian reported.

The Guardian also highlighted photographs that showed Trump standing next to other people who were 6-foot-3 and looking slightly shorter.


Serbia’s Aleksandar Vucic: 6-foot-6 (198 cm)

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Vucic with Merkel and French President Emmanuel Macron at a conference in Berlin in April 2019.
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Carsten Koall/Getty Images

While Serbia may not have the global financial and political clout of countries like Russia and the US, it does boast probably the tallest leader.

Its president has spearheaded the country’s efforts to join the European Union, even securing the support of US Vice President Mike Pence during a recent visit.

Source: Financial Times