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 Angola
Very few countries are similar to Cape Verde. Since it is unique, it is one of the rare countries that has its most similar countries in three different continents. The top three countries all are Portuguese-speaking countries. Furthermore, the top five countries all have a majority Christian population.
Somewhat surprisingly, Guinea-Bissau is not high on the list. One reason is that its population is mostly Muslim. Despite both countries being located fairly closely together, Guinea-Bissau’s climate is much wetter, in addition to being more forested, and less mountainous. The country’s standard of living is also lower than Cape Verde’s.
The five least similar countries are all located in East Asia. Not only is their ancestry quite different, but also their culture and geography. These five countries get much more rainfall than Cape Verde. In addition, four of the five least similar do not use the Latin alphabet and also speak languages completely unrelated to Portuguese.
Top 10 Places Most Similar to Cape Verde
- Angola is another former Portuguese colony in Africa. Both countries benefited from the military aid of Russia in their bids to become independent countries. One big difference is that Angola has an authoritarian government ruled by a single party, while Cape Verde is more democratic. Another difference is that the diet of Angolans is mostly based on cassava.
- Portugal discovered Cape Verde in the 15th Century. Before it was uninhabited. Cape Verde only became completely independent of Portugal in 1975. The countries have a fairly similar climate, although Portugal is slightly wetter and cooler. Portugal also has a higher standard of living. In addition, most of its people have European ancestry and their average age is much older. Although Cape Verde’s government uses the parliamentary system, their laws are quite similar. Both countries allow same-sex marriage, abortion, and do not allow life in prison sentences.
- Brazil is located across the Atlantic Ocean from Cape Verde. It is another former Portuguese colony that is mostly Catholic. Both countries brought many African slaves to work in agriculture, although Brazil has a much greater population with European ancestry. Brazil’s climate also gets much more rainfall and it is far less mountainous.
- Namibia is the most similar country that was not a colony of Portugal. It is another country with a dry climate in Africa that borders the Atlantic Ocean. Both countries are mostly Christian and have a fairly similar standard of living. However, Namibia is far less densely populated than Cape Verde. One big difference is their infrastructure. Namibia drives on the left side of the road and uses Type D, M electrical outlets, unlike Cape Verde.
- South Africa is similar to Namibia. It is another country in Africa with a relatively high standard of living. Both countries are mountainous and have dry climates. Although both countries are mostly Christian, South Africans are mostly Protestant. Another difference is that while most of the electricity in Cape Verde is fueled by oil, South Africa relies heavily on coal to create electricity.
- Haiti, 7. Mexico, 8. Benin, 9. Dominican Republic, 10. Equatorial Guinea
Top 10 Places Least Similar to Cape Verde
- Japan is another mountainous and densely populated archipelago, however it has little else in common with Cape Verde. Its demographics, culture, and infrastructure are especially different. Japan drives on the left side of the road and uses type A, B electrical outlets. While Japan has one of the densest railroad networks in the world, Cape Verde does not even have railroad. Japan’s population is also older and wealthier than Cape Verde.
- North Korea is another East Asian country on this list, although in many respects it is quite different from Cape Verde. Its government is far less democratic. While Cape Verde does not have much of a military, North Korea has the highest percentage of people in the military in the world. One similarity is that a significant portion of the farmland in both countries is used to grow corn, despite Cape Verde’s much hotter and drier climate.
- Brunei is another country that borders the Pacific Ocean on this list, however it is located close to the equator. In contrast to Cape Verde, most of its land is forested. The country is also far wealthier. In addition, its population is mostly Muslim. Furthermore, it has an authoritarian government with more conservative laws.
- South Korea‘s culture and demographics are far different from Cape Verde. It has one of the most educated populations in the world. Their agriculture is also quite different. South Korea mostly grows rice, while Cape Verde mostly grows corn. One thing that they do have in common is that South Korea also has a significant Christian population.
- Taiwan is yet another East Asian country on this list. Its infrastructure is much more developed than Cape Verde. The countries also have extremely dissimilar demographics and culture. Although both countries have a hot climate, Taiwan gets far more rainfall. However, both their governments are democratic and have fairly liberal laws, since they both allow gay marriage and abortion.
- Singapore, 7. Myanmar, 8. China, 9. Bangladesh, 10. Thailand
Full Ranking of Countries and Territories Most Similar to Cape Verde
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