Commonwealth English is a blanket term for the English that developed during the British Empire after the independence of the United States of America. Thus it is the English of the United Kingdom and that variety's development in the Commonwealth nations, such as Australia, New Zealand, South Africa, India, Pakistan, Bangladesh, Nepal, Sri Lanka and those of the Caribbean. Those places use standard British English as their ancestral model - in contrast to Canada, whose English has similarities to American (sharing much of its characteristic pronunciation) as well as British English. Also to be considered outside the definition are all regional variants within the British Isles, including Irish English (the Republic of Ireland is not a member of the Commonwealth) and the English spoken in Mozambique and Rwanda. These do not have English as the colonial language: Mozambique was part of the Portuguese Empire, and only joined the Commonwealth in 1996; and former German and Belgian colony Rwanda joined in 2009.