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. It weighs equally five major aspects of countries: their demographics, culture, politics, infrastructure, and geography. The methodology is exactly the same for each country. The research combines 1,000 different data points to arrive at the conclusions.
Similar to other Latin American countries, especially Peru, Paraguay, and Ecuador
There are many countries with a lot of similarity with Bolivia. Latin American countries are especially similar to Bolivia since they are generally Catholic, speak Romance languages, and are neither especially poor, nor especially rich. Like Bolivia, the countries of Peru, Ecuador, and Paraguay also have a high degree of Native South American influence.
Four of the five least similar countries are located on the Arabian peninsula. These countries are all far wealthier. Their landscapes are far less forested and mostly barren. These Muslim countries are also all still ruled by absolute monarchs and have more conservative laws than Bolivia.
Top 10 Places Most Similar to Bolivia
- Peru, like Bolivia, has a significant amount of Quechuan speaking people. They were both part of the Incan Empire. Peru and Bolivia have mostly tropical climates with some mountainous desert areas. In fact, most of the area of both countries drains to the Amazon River. In addition, their infrastructure is similar. Both countries use both Type A and Type C electrical outlets.
- Paraguay is the only other landlocked South American country. Paraguay gained control over a large section of Bolivia during the Chaco War. Both countries have many speakers of native South American languages. However, Guarani is not even in the same language family as Quechua and Aymara, the indigenous languages most spoken in Bolivia.
- Ecuador is another country like Peru that id located in the Andes Mountains that also has a significant population of Quechuan speakers. In addition, their governmental policies are similar. Both countries have outlawed life in prison and prioritize nature over economic development. However, Ecuador has a bigger percentage of Africans than Peru or Bolivia.
- Colombia is another country in the Andes Mountains that is covered by a large percentage of rainforest. After Spanish colonization, both Colombia and Bolivia were originally part of the Viceroy of Peru, before gaining their respective independences. However, Colombia has a larger percentage of Africans and Europeans. In addition, the United States has had a far greater influence on Colombia than Bolivia.
- Guatemala is the most similar county outside of South America. Both countries have a high percentage of Native American ancestry and many people there still natively speak indigenous languages, not Spanish. However Guatemala’s indigenous Mayan culture is quite different from Bolivia. They are also among the poorest countries in Latin America.
- Nicaragua, 7. Honduras, 8. Mexico, 9. El Salvador, 10. Venezuela
Top 10 Places Least Similar to Bolivia
- Japan is an archipelago in the Pacific Ocean, in contrast to landlocked Bolivia. The country has little technological or cultural similarity to Japan. The country drives on the left and has a much denser network of trains. However, Japan and Bolivia do share some very distant genetic similarity, due to the large Native American population, which has roots in Asia. In addition, they are both mountainous.
- Saudi Arabia has an autocratic government with conservative Muslim policies, in contrasts Bolivia’s democratic government which has more liberal policies. However, both countries have a low population density and also do not have a high percentage of agricultural land.
- Bahrain is a densely populated country on an island in the Persian Gulf, which is highly developed. Its climate is much hotter and drier than Bolivia’s. Most of its residents live close to the coast, in contrast to Bolivia. It also has many more males than females, due to an influx of construction workers.
- Kuwait is similar to Bahrain. It is located in the Arabian Desert between Iraq and Saudi Arabia. It is a wealthy, developed, and highly urbanized country. Most of its water is desalinized ocean water, while Bolivia relies on groundwater.
- Qatar is yet another small Arabian country on this list. It is a peninsula in the Persian Gulf, connected to Saudi Arabia. It has one of the highest GDPs per capita in the world in contrast to Bolivia. In addition, its climate is much drier and its terrain is quite flat. The country also has many more skyscrapers.
- United Arab Emirates, 7. South Korea, 8. Singapore, 9. Israel, 10. Taiwan
Full Ranking of Countries and Territories Most Similar to Bolivia
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