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 former USSR countries and the Balkans
Armenia is a unique country, especially linguistically. Only a few countries have a high degree of similarity. Since it was part of the Soviet Union, the former countries share many of the same characteristics. It is also similar to some of the countries in the Balkans.
The least similar countries are located in two main area: Melanesia and Africa. They are also poorer and their infrastructure is not as well developed. In addition, their native language and ancestries are far different from Armenia’s.
Top 10 Places Most Similar to Armenia
- Georgia is another Christian country to the west of Armenia. Even before the USSR, there was a period of time where Armenia was a part of Georgia. Both countries are very mountainous, although Georgia borders the Black Sea, while Armenia is landlocked. Armenians and Georgians especially like wrestling and weightlifting, with both countries winning Olympic medals in these disciplines. One big difference is that their languages and writing systems are quite different.
- Kyrgyzstan‘s geography is extremely similar to Georgia. Both are very mountainous and landlocked. They also have similar flora and fauna. In addition, their agricultural areas grow a lot of wheat and barley. The spirits are by far the most preferred alcohol in both countries. Kyrgyzstan and Georgia are also both democratic countries, unlike many other former USSR countries, which have authoritarian governments. There are also some big differences since most of their people are Muslim and their language is Turkic, not Indo-European. Furthermore, their people have more East Asian ancestry.
- Moldova is yet another former USSR country on this list. The countries have a similar standard of living. Military service is mandatory in Moldova and Armenia. Both speak Indo-European languages, although Romanian is far different from Armenian. Moldova is also mostly flat land and has a much higher percentage of agricultural land than Armenia. Still, both countries are landlocked and have a similar population density.
- Serbia is the most similar country that was not part of the Soviet Union, although it was part of the Eastern Bloc. Like Armenia and North Macedonia, it is also landlocked, although it is less mountainous. Serbia and Armenia both receive military aid from Russia and have Russian-made battle tanks. Both have historically had struggles with their Muslim neighbors.
- North Macedonia is to the south of Serbia. Both countries have militaries that have Russian-made battle tanks. Like Armenia, it is also relatively poor. In addition, it is another mountainous and landlocked country. Their agricultural lands are alike since they both grow mostly barley and wheat, but also grapes. However, nearly 25% of its population is Muslim.
- Azerbaijan, 7. Ukraine, 8. Romania, 9. Belarus, 10. Tajikistan
Top 10 Places Least Similar to Armenia
- Solomon Islands is tropical archipelago in the Pacific Ocean, in contrast to Armenia’s colder climate and landlocked geography. The country was a colony of Great Britain until 1978. In addition, its infrastructure is quite different. The country drives on the left and uses Type I electrical outlets. Still, both countries are predominately Christian.
- Somalia is a failed state, due to civil war. It is located in Africa on the Indian Ocean coast. It is conservative Muslim country with poorly developed infrastructure. Although both countries have a fairly dry climate, Somalia has a lot of coastline and is relatively flat, unlike Armenia. One similarity is that they are located at the same longitude.
- Papua New Guinea is similar to the Solomon Islands. It is one of the hottest and wettest countries in the world, in contrast to Armenia’s drier and more temperate climate. The country’s standard of living is lower than Armenia. However, both countries are quite mountainous.
- South Sudan is a landlocked and sparsely populated country in Africa. It recently got its independence from Sudan. While both countries are landlocked and have a dry climate, South Sudan is much hotter and its terrain is quite flat.
- Democratic Republic of Congo is a densely forested country in the middle of Africa. Its standard of living is lower than Armenia’s and its infrastructure is far less developed. Although both countries are mostly Christian, Armenians are part of the unique Oriental Orthodox denomination.
- Niger, 7. Sierra Leone 8. Guinea-Bissau, 9. Guinea, 10. Sudan
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