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Comparing the development indicators of two countries one in the North and the other in the South

The following table provides information about the level of development in Ireland (a More Economically Developed Country) and Burkina Faso (a Less Economically Developed Country). Your task is to use this information to write a comparison of the two countries.



Burkina Faso


  • a small island in Europe
  • 70,280 sq km
  • population = 3.8 million
  • a large, arid country in West Africa
  • 274,200 sq km
  • population = 12.3 million

GDP per capita

(in US$)



Birth rate per 1,000



Death rate per 1,000



Infant mortality



Average life expectancy

77 years

46 years

Literacy rate



Number of TVs

1.82 million


Number of radios

2.55 million



The two countries are very different, therefore you will need a lot of words/phrases for contrasting them. Your text would be extremely dull if you simply used the word "but" all the way through! Use the following words/phrases to vary your sentences:



  • whereas

The literacy rate in Zambia is only 76% whereas in the USA it is 97%.

  • while

The average life expectancy in Zambia is 40 years while in the USA it is 77 years.

  • , compared with _______ , which/where

Zambia has only 277,000 televisions sets, compared with the USA, which has 219 million.

  • , by contrast with _______ , which/where

The infant mortality rate in Zambia is 202 out of every 1,000 children born, by contrast with the USA, where only 6 out every 1,000 die.

  • In contrast, _______

A shocking 20% of Zambians have the AIDS virus. In contrast, only 0.61% of Americans are infected.

  • _______ , however,

Only 85% of Zambian children attend primary school. In the USA, however, nearly all children go to school.

  • _______ , on the other hand,

The GDP per capita in Zambia is only $880 per year. In the USA, on the other hand, it is $36,200 per year.

  • This contrasts sharply with _______, which/where

Zambia covers an area of 753,000 square kilometres. This contrasts sharply with the USA, which has an area of 9.6 million square kilometres.


You may also find it appropriate to use the word Similarly when moving to a new point that is similar to the last one:

The literacy rate in Zambia is only 76% whereas in the USA it is 97%. Similarly, only *% of Zambian children go to primary school compared with nearly 100% of American children.


Frankie Meehan