Is New Hampshire too small to be a country?

Some people find the idea of an independent New Hampshire unreasonable on the grounds that it’s just too small a state. Sure, they can envision a Republic of Texas… or a California Republic… but New Hampshire? It’s tiny, rural, sparsely populated, and its entire economy relies on tourists, right?

Wrong!

Nations by Population

New Hampshire has a population of 1.377 million people, per the U.S. Census Bureau’s most recent data. Compare this to the list of the smallest (by population) countries in the world. There are more than 40 countries with a smaller population than New Hampshire, including Liechtenstein and Monaco.

Nations by Geographic Size

New Hampshire is one of the smallest states in the U.S. as measured by physical area. Perhaps that’s why some Americans don’t think that it could survive on its own. But many Americans forget, or were never even aware, of what a huge country the U.S. is by global standards. There are many countries that are physically smaller than New Hampshire, with its square footage of 24,214 sq km. (or 9,349.16 sq miles) There are 80 countries smaller than that! Just a few examples are Bermuda, Bahrain, Hong Kong, and Israel.

Nations by Economic Size

Perhaps more important than either population size or geographic area is economic size. Contrary to popular perception, New Hampshire has more going for it than just tourism.

According to the New Hampshire state government, the top industry in New Hampshire is service, which encompasses healthcare, business, engineering, and education. In addition, the industrial sector accounts for 25% of the state economy. “According to New Hampshire in the New Economy: A Vision for Expanded Prosperity, New Hampshire ranks second in the nation in terms of percentage of private sector employment in high technology (jobs in electronics manufacturing, software, computer related services and telecommunications).” Tourism makes up less than 10% of the gross state product.

Clearly, New Hampshire has more going for it than leaf peeping and maple syrup!

Despite its small size, New Hampshire is an economic powerhouse. Wallethub ranks it fifth in the U.S. for economic activity, economic health, and innovation potential.

New Hampshire’s gross domestic product is $88 billion. Compare this to Luxembourg, at $62 billion; Costa Rica, at $57 billion; and Belarus, at $54.4 billion.

Any way you slice it, New Hampshire can hold its own against other independent nations. The answer to the question “is New Hampshire too small to be a country” is a resounding NO!

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