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.
Top 10 Places Most Similar to Cameroon
Cameroon is a country in the Tropical Africa region. Data from the Index supports the notion that it is the region’s most average country. This not not surprising given Cameroon’s central position in Africa and the fact that there is a significant population of both Christians and Muslims in the country. Moreover, French and English are both official languages there. Still, the top five countries most similar to Cameroon use French as their official language and natively speak Niger-Congo languages. Four of the five most similar were once colonies of France. They are all located in tropical climates. Furthermore, the infrastructure in these countries is not well developed.
- Republic of Congo is another former French colony that borders Cameroon. Both are sparsely populated and are mostly covered by tropical forests. In addition, the countries are politically similar since they are both dominated by a single political party and have very little rule of law. Furthermore, they use the same currency: the Central African CFA Franc. However, the Republic of Congo has a less Muslims than Cameroon.
- Democratic Republic of Congo was a Belgian colony, but its official language is French as well. Both countries are heavily forested with a mix of tropical savannas and rainforests. In addition, their governments are similar since they are both one-party states with bicameral legislatures. Both also use 112 as their emergency number. Unlike the Republic of Congo, it has its own currency, but it is also called the Franc.
- Central African Republic borders Cameroon to its east. It is another hot tropical and relatively undeveloped country. Like the Republic of Congo and Cameroon, it also uses the Central African CFA Franc. Their laws are similar. Both countries allow polygamy and criminalize prostitution. However, the country is poorer and has a higher homicide rate than the Republic of Congo. It is also landlocked.
- Togo‘s colonial history is very similar to Cameroon. Both countries were once German colonies before being taken over and split up by both Britain and France after World War I. Furthermore, in more recent times, both of their governments have been ruled by long lasting dictators, who often rig elections. Their agriculture is similar as well. Both countries tend to produce corn and sorghum.
- Guinea is yet another former French colony on this that borders the Atlantic Ocean. Both countries have significant populations of people from the Fula ethnic group. However, Guinea has a far higher percentage of Muslims than Cameroon. While their climates are fairly similar, Guinea grows more rice, while Cameroon grows more cassava.
- Ivory Coast, 7. Gabon, 8. Benin, 9. Equatorial Guinea, 10. Burundi
Top 10 Places Least Similar to Cameroon
The five least similar countries to Cameroon are highly developed democratic countries. They all have cooler climates than Cameroon as well. In addition, their people tend to be significantly less outgoing than Cameroonians. Four of the five countries least similar to Cameroon are located on islands and are located in the Northern Hemisphere.
- Japan is by far the least similar country to Cameroon. Not only is its geography significantly different, but also its demographics, culture, and technology. There really is not much in common between the two countries. Not only in Japan’s technology much more advanced, but Japan’s infrastructure standards are especially different, since the country drives on the left, uses Type A, B electrical outlets, and one-meter wide railroad tracks.
- South Korea is another temperate country in East Asia, similar to Japan. However, it has a few more aspects in common with Cameroon than Japan. Many of its people are Christian, like in Cameroon, although they are less religious. Furthermore, it drives on the right side of the road and uses the Type C electrical outlet. Still, there is little else these countries have in common.
- Taiwan is yet another country that borders the Pacific Ocean with little similarity to Cameroon. Due to its more southern location, its subtropical climate makes it lower on the list than Japan and South Korea. Both countries also have a lot of forests, although Taiwan is an island and also more mountainous. The countries have especially little in common culturally. Their languages and writing systems completely different. Furthermore, soccer is less popular in Taiwan than in Cameroon.
- Iceland, like Cameroon, also borders the Atlantic Ocean, but they are extremely different in each of the five major categories: demographics, culture, politics, technology and geography. Iceland is far colder and its landscape is more mountainous. Although Iceland is mostly Christian, most are Protestant and a significant number are irreligious in contrast to Cameroon. Another similarity is that both countries also use the Latin alphabet.
- United Kingdom, like Iceland, is another island in the Atlantic Ocean on this list. Despite having English as an official language, the use of French is more widespread in Cameroon. The country is also much more densely populated than Cameroon and most of its people live near the coast. In contrast to Cameroon, the country has a low percentage of forested land, since most of it is used for agriculture or urban space.
- Denmark, 7. Canada, 8. Israel, 8. New Zealand, 9. Netherlands 10. Norway
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Cameroon is like if the Republic of Congo was more like Tanzania
Cameroon’s most similar country is the Republic of Congo, but there are several differences between them which make Tanzania significantly more like Cameroon than the Republic of Congo. One of Cameroon’s official languages is English, like Tanzania. Furthermore both Tanzania and Cameroon have a significant Muslim population, unlike the Republic of Congo. Furthermore, Cameroon and Tanzania have more tropical savanna land than the Republic of Congo.
Full Ranking of Countries and Territories Most Similar to Cameroon
All data accurate as of 2020.
Most Similar Demographics: Tanzania
Most Similar Culture: Chad
Most Similar Government: Benin
Most Similar Infrastructure: Mali
Most Similar Geography: Democratic Republic of Congo
Least Similar Demographics: Japan
Least Similar Culture: Japan
Least Similar Government: Finland
Least Similar Infrastructure: Japan
Least Similar Geography: Bahrain