Which Countries are Most Similar to North Korea?

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 China and South Korea

North Korea is very unique. In some respects, South Korea is extremely similar to North Korea since it speaks Korean and uses the Korean writing system. However, its politics and technology are far different from South Korea. In these aspects, North Korea is more similar to China.

Top 10 Places Most Similar to North Korea

  1. China is another East Asian country ruled by an authoritarian communist party, albeit a less extreme version. As a result of being in countries that practice state atheism, both countries are not particularly religious. However, China is much more prosperous and is completely different linguistically.
  2. South Korea is the only other country that speaks Korean and uses its unique writing system, Hangul. However, there are huge political and technological differences between South Korea and North Korea. While South Korea is a two-party democracy, North Korea is a one-party authoritarian dictatorship. In addition, North Korea is far poorer and has less developed infrastructure.
  3. Vietnam, like China and North Korea, has an authoritarian communist government. Both countries have been highly influenced by China historically. However, Vietnam has a tropical climate. Furthermore, its agriculture and diet is based far more on rice. North Korea’s diet and crops are more diverse.
  4. Laos is yet another Asian, authoritarian one-party state on this list. Both countries are quite poor and their infrastructure is not well developed. Although both countries are mountainous, Laos is landlocked and has completely different flora and fauna.
  5. Cambodia borders both Laos and Vietnam. Cambodia is a little different politically, since it is a constitutional monarchy. Still, it is a one-party, authoritarian state. However, historically Cambodia has been much more influenced by India than China.
  6. Myanmar, 7. Cuba, 8. Thailand, 9. Mongolia, 10. Uzbekistan

Top 10 Places Least Similar to North Korea

  1. Australia is much more democratic than North Korea and far more liberal. In addition, while both countries border the Pacific Ocean, Australia’s climate is much hotter and drier. Australia’s technology is very different as well since it drives on the left, has Type I electrical outlets, and uses a different rail gauge.
  2. Iceland is a highly developed island in the Atlantic Ocean. Like Australia, it has liberal policies and culture, which contrast North Korea. One thing that both countries have in common is that they have many atheists.
  3. United States is also vastly different from North Korea. The culture of each country couldn’t be more different. While North Korean has a collectivist culture, the United States is individualist. North Korea has few foreigners, whereas the United States is a melting pot of different races and cultures.
  4. Canada is similar to the United States. However, it is even colder and less populated. Both North Korea and Canada do create most of their energy through hydropower, but Canada creates far more per capita.
  5. Switzerland is also quite different from North Korea, since it is one of the richest countries in the world. Its government is also one of the most democratic and least corrupt. While both countries are mountainous, Switzerland has higher peaks and more areas with an alpine climate.
  6. Bahamas, 7. Ireland, 8. New Zealand, 9. Trinidad & Tobago, 10. Bahrain

    Full Ranking of Countries and Territories Most Similar to North Korea

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


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