Monday, 3 June 2013

Nations' 'Did You Know?'

Here are 25 startling facts you probably didn't know about these countries...

Afghanistan is the world's largest opium producer with 95% of the total production.
It's even growing after 10 years of U.S occupation (wink ;} wink).

Canada has the most educated people with 50% of its population having been
educated at the post secondary level. It is followed by Israel (45%) and Japan (44%).
I've lived there for three years and you could somehow feel it.

Egypt is the first sovereign state. Of course this largely depends upon the definition of
a sovereign state, but if we are going by first acquisition of sovereignty then Egypt
would be the first country in the world to achieve sovereignty based upon the formation
of the first dynasty in 3100 BC. I've lived there too, it was where I was born and raised.
All one can say now is that only SO MUCH has changed since 3100 BC.

Falkland Islands (U.K ) has 350 sheep for every person. With only about
3,000 people the Falkland Islands are home to there are approximately half a
million sheep. Not surprisingly, wool is a major export.

France covers the most time zones. If you count everything, including overseas territories,
then France claims the title by covering 12 zones. The United States would be the runner-up
with 11 and then Russia with 9.

Roads in Guam are made of corals. Because Guam doesn't have any natural sand, the island
nation makes its asphalt using a mix of ground coral and oil rather than importing sand from abroad.

Haiti is almost entirely treeless. The country that has been so badly deforested that you can tell where it borders the Dominican Republic by looking at a satellite image (Haiti is on the left in the photo).
Russia has the largest number of tanks. It is a strange title to hold, but Russia has by far the most tanks of any army in the world (21,000). Unfortunately for the motherland, most of these outdated machines are tributes to its past. And though outnumbered (16,000), the United States has a much more advanced tank inventory.

India is the most diverse country in the world. In almost every category culturally, economically, climatically, racially, linguistically, ethnically, and religiously India is either the most diverse countries in the world, or the runner-up. There are 780 languages spoken in India including 250 that have died out in last 50 years.

Libya is 99% desert. Libya is one of the most arid places in the world and in some regions decades may go by without a single drop of rain.

The Maldives is the most likely to disappear beneath the waves. With all the hysteria of global warming and rising sea levels, it is the residents of the Maldives that have the greatest reason to fear. With an average height of around 1.8 meters above sea level their nation is the lowest on Earth.

Malta has most of its citizens living abroad. After some rough economic times coupled with an increased birth rate, Malta experienced significant immigration. It was so significant that there are now more Maltese living abroad than within the country itself.

Monaco is smaller than New York City’s Central Park. Although Vatican City is smaller (.17 sq mi) than Monaco (.8 sq. mi), but unlike Monaco it doesn't have any permanent residents which leaves Monaco as the smallest permanently inhabited nation in the world…smaller than Central Park.

Mongolia is the least likely place to meet your neighbour. At 4 people per square mile Mongolia is the least densely populated country on Earth. Compare this to the Mong Kok district of Hong Kong that has the highest population density in the world with 340,000 people per square mile.

Nauru has the most overweight population. With over 95% of its population being overweight, the small island nation of Nauru is by far the fattest country on Earth. Its obesity epidemic is primarily attributed to the importation of western fast food that coincided with an increased standard of living in the 20th century due to the global popularity of its phosphate exports. It’s almost non sequitur…almost. Another sad disadvantage of the westernization of the world.

Niger has the youngest population. The world’s youngest country is generally determined by calculating the portion of the population that is younger than 15. Presently it is Niger that holds this distinction with roughly half of its population having barely reached puberty (49%).
Canada has the most lakes in the world. With over 3 million lakes 9% of Canadian territory is actually fresh water and over 60% of all the lakes in the world are found within its borders. I'm ashamed to say that I have only visited about 7 or 9 until now. 
Papa New Guinea has the most languages spoken. Although English is its official language, only 1-2% of the population actually speak it. As the most linguistically diverse country in the world, over 820 languages are spoken in Papua New Guinea or 12% of the world’s total.

Russia produces most of the world’s oxygen. Siberia is home to approximately 25% of the world’s forests that span an area larger than the continental United States, making Russia the largest converter of CO2 into breathable compounds. Thank you, Maman Russia.

Saudi Arabia has no rivers. A little odd for such a large country but there are no sources of flowing water whatsoever. Most of their fresh water comes from desalinization plants or underground reservoirs. It's also known that Saudi Arabia is free of mental illness because there are no mad people there.

Singapore is the largest country with no farms. Although there are a number of small nations in the world that show no hint of having an agriculture-based economy (Vatican City for example), Singapore is the largest of these urban city-states.

Somalia is the least peaceful nation of the world. Although for the last three years Iraq has been ranked as the least peaceful country in the world, according to the Global Peace Index Somalia overtook it this year for the top spot.

Suriname is almost entirely covered in jungles. With 91% of its land covered in jungle Suriname's half a million residents live primarily along the coast near the capital. Only 5% of the population (mainly indigenous people) live inland.

The United States has most people behind bars. When it comes to incarcerating its population, the U.S is the world’s uncontested leader. With 2.2 million people behind bars it has 5% of the world’s population but 25% of the world’s incarcerated population! China comes in second place at 1.5 million and Russia comes third at 870,000. Actually there are private prisons in the U.S that make money by the googol from all this.

Ukraine is the fastest disappearing nation. With a natural decrease in population of .8% annually, between now and 2050 Ukraine is expected to lose around 30% of its people. I wonder where they went.

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