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 Central American countries
There are many countries with a high degree of similarity with Nicaragua, especially its neighbors in Central America. They are generally Catholic, speak Spanish, and have similar governments. People in El Salvador, Honduras, Guatemala, and Nicaragua can even move freely between their countries since there are no checkpoints at their shared borders.
Four of the five least similar countries are located in the Middle East on the Arabian Peninsula. These countries are far more affluent than Nicaragua and have a higher standard of living. Their laws are generally more conservative and their governments are monarchies.
Top 10 Places Most Similar to Nicaragua
- Honduras and Nicaragua are two of the most similar countries in the world. Their laws, demographics, and culture are nearly identical. Both countries are located on the Mosquito Coast. They are also the two poorest countries in Central America. Their diet generally consists of chicken with corn, rice, and wheat.
- El Salvador is also quite similar to Nicaragua, even though they do not border each other. Their agriculture is incredibly similar as both countries grow a lot of corn, coffee, and beans, but Nicaragua has a lower percentage of agricultural land and is less densely populated. Both countries primarily use oil to create electricity, but also use biomass, geothermal, and hydropower.
- Guatemala is further north than Honduras and El Salvador. Guatemala has less people with African ancestry and more people with indigenous ancestry. Many of its people still speak Mayan, unlike Nicaragua. Other than those unique demographic and cultural traits, the country is not very different from Nicaragua.
- Costa Rica borders Nicaragua to the south, but it has some significant differences. Costa Rica is more developed and wealthier than Nicaragua. Furthermore, Costa Rica is much safer. Its energy sources are more sustainable, since it primarily uses hydropower and geothermal to create electricity. Its population is older than Nicaragua and it has far fewer farmers.
- Panama also has similar culture, demographics, and geography to Honduras. However, Panama is more prosperous and it has far more skyscrapers. Furthermore, while Nicaragua has close relations with Russia, in contrast Panama has the closest ties with the United States of any Central American country. Nicaragua is interested in creating a canal between the Pacific and Atlantic Oceans, like Panama.
- Dominican Republic, 7. Colombia, 8. Ecuador, 9. Venezuela, 10. Peru
Top 10 Places Least Similar to Nicaragua
- Japan has little demographic or cultural similarity to Nicaragua. Japan has a much older population and it is also much wealthier. While Japan has one of the most sophisticated rail networks, there is no railroad traffic in Nicaragua. The biggest similarity is that both countries are located on Ring of Fire, so they have many active volcanos and earthquakes. They also both use Type A, B electrical outlets.
- Bahrain is a small, densely populated island in the Persian Gulf. It is also highly developed and quite wealthy. Much of its land is urban or desert, in contrast to heavily forested Nicaragua.
- Qatar is a peninsula in the Persian Gulf, connected to Saudi Arabia. It has one of the highest GDPs per capita. In addition, its climate is much drier and its terrain is quite flat. However, both countries are quite hot.
- Saudi Arabia is adjacent to Bahrain and Qatar. Its government is an absolute monarchy and the country does not even have a congress. Its laws are also more conservative than in Nicaragua. Gambling and alcohol are not allowed there. Like the other two countries its climate is also much drier.
- United Arab Emirates is another Muslim country extremely similar to Qatar. It is home to the tallest building in the world, Burj Dubai, and has many skyscrapers. In contrast, Nicaragua does not have any skyscrapers.
- South Korea, 7. Kuwait, 8. Israel, 9. China, 10. Singapore
Full Ranking of Countries and Territories Most Similar to Nicaragua
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