Determining the Sub-Saharan African country most similar to South Asia requires considering various social, cultural, economic, and political factors.
One way to answer this complex question is by analyzing the data from the Country Similarity Index. The index attempts to quantify how similar countries are to each other relative to other countries, using a variety of statistics from five broad categories: demographics, culture, politics, infrastructure, and geography.
The data suggests that Tanzania is the most similar Sub-Saharan African nation to South Asia. On the other end of the spectrum, Equatorial Guinea has the least amount of traits in common with South Asian countries.
(South Asian countries defined as India, Bangladesh, Bhutan, Sri Lanka, and Nepal. Pakistan could be considered as either Middle Eastern or South Asian, but included as well)
Like most countries in South Asia, Tanzania was colonized by the British. As a result, they have have adopted many of the same political traits and infrastructure standards. Tanzania’s geography is also similar to South Asia as well.
Most South Asian countries are democratic, but their governments are not especially stable. There is little rule of law in these countries. The British colonial legacy has left an imprint on Tanzania and South Asia’s political institutions, legal systems, and laws. As a result, Common Law is widespread in these countries. Furthermore, Tanzania and many South Asian countries have significant Muslim populations, so they have many laws that apply to only Muslims.
South Asia and East Africa both drive on the left side of the road. Tanzania and many South Asian countries face challenges related to energy infrastructure, including access to electricity and the development of power generation. Both Tanzania and South Asian countries have seen advancements in telecommunications infrastructure. Mobile networks and internet connectivity are crucial for economic development and communication in both regions.
Both Tanzania and South Asia have mountainous areas. Tanzania features Africa’s tallest mountain, Kilimanjaro. Similarly, South Asia is home to the Himalayas, the world’s highest mountain range. Furthermore, Tanzania, as well as India, Pakistan, Sri Lanka, and Bangladesh, all border Indian Ocean. Many parts of Tanzania and South Asia have a tropical climate. Both regions feature diverse ecosystems, including rainforests and savannas.
The Most Similar South Asian Country to Tanzania
The Country Similarity Index suggests that India is the most similar South Asian country to Tanzania. India has historical ties with East Africa, through trade and cultural exchanges. Indian Ocean trade routes connected the two regions, leading to the exchange of goods and ideas. Both were once under British colonial rule as well. As a result, English is one of the official languages in Tanzania, and India has a significant English-speaking population.