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 English-Speaking Countries near the Caribbean Sea
Few large countries are similar to Jamaica. 4 of the top 5 countries were colonies of Great Britain, with the exception being the Dominican Republic, which was a Spanish colony. Please note that some of the other countries in the West Indies, Antigua & Barbuda, Barbados, Dominica, Grenada, St. Kitts & Nevis, St. Lucia, Saint Vincent and the Grenadines, would all be strong candidates for this list, but they are too small in population and land area to have enough reliable data for this project.
Top 10 Places Most Similar to Jamaica
- Bahamas is another former British colony that still has the Queen of the United Kingdom as their head of state. They have extremely similar demographics since they are both over 90% black and mostly Protestant. However, the Bahamas is much more wealthy than Jamaica. Furthermore, its landscape much more flat and has less agricultural land.
- Trinidad & Tobago and Jamaica were briefly part of one country, the West Indies Federation, between 1958 and 1962. They have a similar diet consisting mostly of wheat, rice, chicken, and seafood, although Jamaica eats more yams. Trinidad also has a much higher population of Indians than Jamaica. So although its population is mostly Christian, about 20% practice Hinduism.
- Belize, unlike Bahamas and Trinidad, is located on the mainland of North America, but it has a similar tropical climate and beautiful beaches. The British brought slaves from Jamaica to Belize to help cut down trees to sell to Europeans. Belize is more diverse than Jamaica since more than 30% of its people natively speak Spanish. It also has an even mix of Catholics and Protestants.
- Guyana is located in South America, but it is still considered a Caribbean country. In fact, Georgetown is the headquarters of Caribbean Community. Like Trinidad and Tobago, it has a unique mix of Indians and Africans. It is one of the few countries in South America that drives on the left.
- Dominican Republic is the only country on this list that is not a former colony of Britain. However, their geography is strikingly similar. They have a similar percentage of agricultural land and forested land. Dominican Republic and Jamaica are also both quite mountainous. They also have a similar standard of living.
- Haiti, 7. Honduras, 8. El Salvador, 9. Panama, 10. Fiji
Top 10 Places Least Similar to Jamaica
- Afghanistan is a landlocked Muslim country that has less developed infrastructure than Jamaica. Furthermore, the technology that Afghanistan has is different from Jamaica since it drives on the right, uses Russian broad gauge railroad tracks, and has Type C, F electrical outlets with a different voltage. Afghanistan also relies on hydropower for electricity, while Jamaica relies on oil.
- China‘s demographics and culture are obviously far different from Jamaica. It also has a greater diversity of landscapes. While China has a huge amount of media and internet censorship, Jamaica has very little.
- Kuwait is located in the Arabian Desert between Iraq and Saudi Arabia. It is a wealthy, developed, and highly urbanized country. Kuwait is a desert, unlike Jamaica’s lush rainforest. However all the land in both countries is close to the coast.
- Yemen is another Muslim country located in the Arabian Desert, but in contrast to Kuwait it is extremely poor and warn torn. However, like Jamaica, it mostly relies on oil to produce energy.
- North Korea has obvious political differences from Jamaica. North Korea has very strict drug and immigration laws, in contrast to Jamaica. In addition, military service is mandatory in North Korea and their military equipment is much more sophisticated than Jamaica’s.
- Sudan, 7. Somalia, 8. Turkmenistan, 9. Kazakhstan, 10. Saudi Arabia
Do you agree with the list?
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