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 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 Malaysia & Brunei
There are very few countries that are similar to Singapore. Although most of its people are East Asian, its lingua franca is English, and it is one of the most religiously diverse countries in the world. It also retains many British traits from over a century of colonization. Furthermore, its geography is extremely different from most countries, since it is essentially a city-state with little agricultural land.
Top 10 Places Most Similar to Singapore
- Brunei is another small country that borders Malaysia, which recently gained its independence from Britain. Singapore and Brunei are also two of the wealthiest countries in East Asia. However, there are significant differences between them as well. While Singapore is a secular state with a diversity of religions, Islam is the predominant faith and state religion of Brunei.
- Malaysia and Singapore were briefly united in the 1960s, before Singapore became independent. A significant number of Malay people are in Singapore. Two big differences are that Singapore’s lingua franca is English, not Malay, and it is also much more religiously diverse. Furthermore, Malaysia is not as wealthy or developed.
- Taiwan, like Singapore, is a tropical island in the Pacific Ocean with mostly ethnic Chinese people. Nevertheless, Taiwan was not colonized by Britain, so it does not have British traits like driving on the left side of the road, using common law, and speaking English.
- Trinidad & Tobago is a surprising country on this list, since in many ways, it is quite different from Singapore, especially since most people in Trinidad are of African ancestry. Still, there are some undeniable similarities as well. Both are densely populated tropical countries with a lot of religious diversity. Both were also once part of the British Empire and speak English. In addition, Trinidad & Tobago is relatively prosperous, like Singapore. It is the third wealthiest country in the Western Hemisphere, behind the United States and Canada.
- South Korea is another densely populated East Asian country. Like Singapore, its two largest religions are Buddhism and Christianity. In addition, the technological infrastructure of both countries is well developed. Both countries have extremely good internet and a busy network of trains. The biggest difference is that South Korea’s language and writing system is completely different.
- United Kingdom, 7. Philippines, 8. Japan, 9. Vietnam, 10. Indonesia
Top 10 Places Least Similar to Singapore
- Somalia is an anarchic, Muslim country in Africa with poorly developed infrastructure, due to civil war. It is a sparsely populated desert with little demographic or cultural similarity to Singapore. While part of Somalia was a British protectorate, Britain had far less of an influence on Somalia than Singapore.
- Niger is a landlocked country located in the Sahara Desert. It was a colony of France, so it drives on the right and uses Type C,E electrical outlets, unlike Singapore. The country has little demographic similarity as well since it has the youngest population in the world and the ancestry of its people is completely different.
- Afghanistan is another landlocked country, like Niger, but it is extremely mountainous as well. Although both Singapore and Afghanistan are technically in Asia, there is little cultural or demographic similarity between the two countries as well.
- Yemen is located across the Gulf of Aden from Somalia. It is another conservative Muslim country that, unlike other countries on the Arabian Peninsula, is poorly developed. Its government is also anarchic and there is little rule of law, in contrast to Singapore.
- Eritrea is the only predominately Christian country on this list. Although both countries are one-party states, Eritrea is a totalitarian dictatorship, while Singapore is more democratic. It is also much poorer and less developed.
- Sudan, 7. Mali, 8. Chad, 9. Mauritania, 10. Burkina Faso
Full Ranking of Countries and Territories Most Similar to Singapore
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