Which Countries are Most Similar to Nigeria?

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Have you ever wondered how similar or different two countries are? The Country Similarity Index attempts to quantify how similar countries are to each other relative to other countries. The index is a statistically-based objective way to measure this. The index weights equally five major aspects of countries: their demographics, culture, politics, technology, and geography. In addition each aspect was roughly balanced evenly between quantity/percentage and quality/type. See this post for a full explanation: https://objectivelists.home.blog/2020/05/30/country-similarity-index/

Similar to other English-speaking African countries, with significant amounts of both Muslims and Christians

With the exception of Ivory Coast, the 4 of the top 5 countries most similar to Nigeria are African countries which have English as one of their official languages and use it as their lingua franca. In addition, all of the countries in the top 5 have had their culture impacted by both Christians and Muslims.

Top 10 Places Most Similar to Nigeria

  1. Ghana is another former British colony on the Gulf of Guinea. Both speak English, have similar electric outlets, and use common law.  There has also been some immigration between the two countries after their independence. 
  2. Ivory Coast is also located on the Gulf of Guinea. Both countries have roughly equal amounts of Christians and Muslims. In addition, both have a similar diet consisting of cassava, yams, and fish. However, the biggest difference is Ivory Coast has more of a French influence.
  3. Sierra Leone was a British colony, despite its Italian sounding name. It was founded to resettle freed African slaves. However, it has a higher Muslim population than Nigeria and is also less developed.
  4. Tanzania was originally a German colony, until World War I, when it became a British colony. Like Nigeria, it has a similar mix of Muslims and Christians. However it is located on the Indian Ocean, instead of the Atlantic Ocean.
  5. Liberia is another English-speaking African country similar to Nigeria. Like Sierra Leone, it was settled by freed slaves. However it has a higher Christian population than Nigeria and is also less developed.
  6. Kenya, 7. Guinea, 8. Gambia, 9. Benin, 10. Cameroon

Top 10 Places Least Similar to Nigeria

  1. Japan is by far the least similar country to Nigeria. Not only is its geography significantly different, but also its demographics, culture, and technology. There isn’t much in common between the two, except that they are both democracies.
  2. Switzerland has the least similar government in comparison to Nigeria. The Swiss government is one of the least corrupt in the world. In addition, Switzerland’s extremely mountainous and alpine forest geography, which contrasts Nigeria’s relatively flat plains of tropical savanna land.
  3. Iceland, like Nigeria, also borders the Atlantic Ocean, but they are extremely different. Iceland uses a lot of energy, created by renewable resources, while Nigeria uses little electricity and has mostly gas power plants. Furthermore, although Iceland is mostly Christian, a significant number are irreligious in contrast to Nigeria, which has a much higher percentage of believers.
  4. Taiwan is another Asian country on this list. Like Japan, its demographics, culture are quite different from Nigeria.  Its infrastructure is much more developed as well. 
  5. Norway is in the same time zone as Nigeria, however there are not many other significant similarities. Norway is highly developed, but also sparsely populated, in contrast to Nigeria’s relatively undeveloped and densely populated land. Their climates are also quite different.
  6. Canada, 7. Finland, 8. South Korea, 9. Sweden, 10. New Zealand

Full Ranking of Countries and Territories Most Similar to Nigeria


Do you agree with the list?
Please leave any thoughts in the comments section.

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