These are the sort of statistics that may become obsolete overnight but still remain meaningful. As of yesterday, March 7th, there were 81 validated living supercentenarians among us: 70 women and 11 men confirmed to be at least 110 years old. There are three WWI era veterans on the list - the other handful of survivors are still a year or two too young to make the cut - but another, an 111-year-old Ukrainian named Mikhail Efimovich Krichevsky who claims to have served in the Russian Army in 1917, is missing from the supercentenarian list. Perhaps his age has also been difficult to verify.
If we include Mr. Krichevsky, we find that 35 or 44% of these oldest of the old were living in the United States on March 7th, 2008. 30% or 24 of them were in Japan, 7 or 9% were in Italy, and 4 or 5% in the UK. The remainder were in France (2, +1 more in Guadeloupe); Portugal (2); and just 1 each in Sweden, Spain, Australia, Canada, Finland, The Netherlands and Ukraine.
I wouldn't make too much of the countries on this list. They are generally places with a high standard of living and resources to dedicate to elder care. There are other countries - former colonies - where birth records were not the priority in the 1890s but which may still be home to some of the oldest of the old. Britain and France might have had another name on their lists had not the World Wars decimated two generations of their young men, though probably all this means is that there are likely more women in this age class from these places than would have been otherwise. Japan is exceptional, as all the supercentenarians from that country were also born there and were middle-aged during WWII. One might be tempted to speculate about diet and lifestyle (all that lycopene and olive oil in Italian cuisine), but extreme longevity is simply the far end of the spectrum, a multi-million-to-one long shot. Every day of life is extraordinary.