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Languages (2002)

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Informations about Languages in 2002 year

AfghanistanAfghanistan Pashtu 35%, Afghan Persian (Dari) 50%, Turkic languages (primarily Uzbek and Turkmen) 11%, 30 minor languages (primarily Balochi and Pashai) 4%, much bilingualism
AlbaniaAlbania Albanian (Tosk is the official dialect), Greek
AlgeriaAlgeria Arabic (official), French, Berber dialects
American SamoaAmerican Samoa Samoan (closely related to Hawaiian and other Polynesian languages), English

note: most people are bilingual
AndorraAndorra Catalan (official), French, Castilian, Portuguese
AngolaAngola Portuguese (official), Bantu and other African languages
AnguillaAnguilla English (official)
Antigua and BarbudaAntigua and Barbuda English (official), local dialects
ArgentinaArgentina Spanish (official), English, Italian, German, French
ArmeniaArmenia Armenian 96%, Russian 2%, other 2%
ArubaAruba Dutch (official), Papiamento (a Spanish, Portuguese, Dutch, English dialect), English (widely spoken), Spanish
AustraliaAustralia English, native languages
AustriaAustria German
AzerbaijanAzerbaijan Azerbaijani (Azeri) 89%, Russian 3%, Armenian 2%, other 6% (1995 est.)
Bahamas, TheBahamas, The English, Creole (among Haitian immigrants)
BahrainBahrain Arabic, English, Farsi, Urdu
BangladeshBangladesh Bangla (official, also known as Bengali), English
BarbadosBarbados English
BelarusBelarus Belarusian, Russian, other
BelgiumBelgium Dutch (official) 60%, French (official) 40%, German (official) less than 1%, legally bilingual (Dutch and French)
BelizeBelize English (official), Spanish, Mayan, Garifuna (Carib), Creole
BeninBenin French (official), Fon and Yoruba (most common vernaculars in south), tribal languages (at least six major ones in north)
BermudaBermuda English (official), Portuguese
BhutanBhutan Dzongkha (official), Bhotes speak various Tibetan dialects, Nepalese speak various Nepalese dialects
BoliviaBolivia Spanish (official), Quechua (official), Aymara (official)
Bosnia and HerzegovinaBosnia and Herzegovina Croatian, Serbian, Bosnian
BotswanaBotswana English (official), Setswana
BrazilBrazil Portuguese (official), Spanish, English, French
British Virgin IslandsBritish Virgin Islands English (official)
BruneiBrunei Malay (official), English, Chinese
BulgariaBulgaria Bulgarian, secondary languages closely correspond to ethnic breakdown
Burkina FasoBurkina Faso French (official), native African languages belonging to Sudanic family spoken by 90% of the population
BurmaBurma Burmese, minority ethnic groups have their own languages
BurundiBurundi Kirundi (official), French (official), Swahili (along Lake Tanganyika and in the Bujumbura area)
CambodiaCambodia Khmer (official) 95%, French, English
CameroonCameroon 24 major African language groups, English (official), French (official)
CanadaCanada English 59.3% (official), French 23.2% (official), other 17.5%
Cape VerdeCape Verde Portuguese, Crioulo (a blend of Portuguese and West African words)
Cayman IslandsCayman Islands English
Central African RepublicCentral African Republic French (official), Sangho (lingua franca and national language), tribal languages
ChadChad French (official), Arabic (official), Sara (in south), more than 120 different languages and dialects
ChileChile Spanish
ChinaChina Standard Chinese or Mandarin (Putonghua, based on the Beijing dialect), Yue (Cantonese), Wu (Shanghaiese), Minbei (Fuzhou), Minnan (Hokkien-Taiwanese), Xiang, Gan, Hakka dialects, minority languages (see Ethnic groups entry)
Christmas IslandChristmas Island English (official), Chinese, Malay
Cocos (Keeling) IslandsCocos (Keeling) Islands Malay (Cocos dialect), English
ColombiaColombia Spanish
ComorosComoros Arabic (official), French (official), Shikomoro (a blend of Swahili and Arabic)
Congo, Democratic Republic of theCongo, Democratic Republic of the French (official), Lingala (a lingua franca trade language), Kingwana (a dialect of Kiswahili or Swahili), Kikongo, Tshiluba
Congo, Republic of theCongo, Republic of the French (official), Lingala and Monokutuba (lingua franca trade languages), many local languages and dialects (of which Kikongo has the most users)
Cook IslandsCook Islands English (official), Maori
Costa RicaCosta Rica Spanish (official), English spoken around Puerto Limon
Cote d'IvoireCote d'Ivoire French (official), 60 native dialects with Dioula the most widely spoken
CroatiaCroatia Croatian 96%, other 4% (including Italian, Hungarian, Czech, Slovak, and German)
CubaCuba Spanish
CyprusCyprus Greek, Turkish, English
Czech RepublicCzech Republic Czech
DenmarkDenmark Danish, Faroese, Greenlandic (an Inuit dialect), German (small minority)

note: English is the predominant second language
DjiboutiDjibouti French (official), Arabic (official), Somali, Afar
DominicaDominica English (official), French patois
Dominican RepublicDominican Republic Spanish
East TimorEast Timor Tetum (official), Portuguese (official), Indonesian, English

note: there are a total of about 16 indigenous languages, of which Tetum, Galole, Mambae, and Kemak are spoken by significant numbers of people
EcuadorEcuador Spanish (official), Amerindian languages (especially Quechua)
EgyptEgypt Arabic (official), English and French widely understood by educated classes
El SalvadorEl Salvador Spanish, Nahua (among some Amerindians)
Equatorial GuineaEquatorial Guinea Spanish (official), French (official), pidgin English, Fang, Bubi, Ibo
EritreaEritrea Afar, Amharic, Arabic, Tigre and Kunama, Tigrinya, other Cushitic languages
EstoniaEstonia Estonian (official), Russian, Ukrainian, Finnish, other
EthiopiaEthiopia Amharic, Tigrinya, Oromigna, Guaragigna, Somali, Arabic, other local languages, English (major foreign language taught in schools)
Falkland Islands (Islas Malvinas)Falkland Islands (Islas Malvinas) English
Faroe IslandsFaroe Islands Faroese (derived from Old Norse), Danish
FijiFiji English (official), Fijian, Hindustani
FinlandFinland Finnish 93.4% (official), Swedish 5.9% (official), small Lapp- and Russian-speaking minorities
FranceFrance French 100%, rapidly declining regional dialects and languages (Provencal, Breton, Alsatian, Corsican, Catalan, Basque, Flemish)
French GuianaFrench Guiana French
French PolynesiaFrench Polynesia French (official), Tahitian (official)
GabonGabon French (official), Fang, Myene, Nzebi, Bapounou/Eschira, Bandjabi
Gambia, TheGambia, The English (official), Mandinka, Wolof, Fula, other indigenous vernaculars
Gaza StripGaza Strip Arabic, Hebrew (spoken by Israeli settlers and many Palestinians), English (widely understood)
GeorgiaGeorgia Georgian 71% (official), Russian 9%, Armenian 7%, Azeri 6%, other 7%

note: Abkhaz is the official language in Abkhazia
GermanyGermany German
GhanaGhana English (official), African languages (including Akan, Moshi-Dagomba, Ewe, and Ga)
GibraltarGibraltar English (used in schools and for official purposes), Spanish, Italian, Portuguese
GreeceGreece Greek 99% (official), English, French
GreenlandGreenland Greenlandic (East Inuit), Danish, English
GrenadaGrenada English (official), French patois
GuadeloupeGuadeloupe French (official) 99%, Creole patois
GuamGuam English, Chamorro, Japanese
GuatemalaGuatemala Spanish 60%, Amerindian languages 40% (23 officially recognized Amerindian languages, including Quiche, Cakchiquel, Kekchi, Mam, Garifuna, and Xinca)
GuernseyGuernsey English, French, Norman-French dialect spoken in country districts
GuineaGuinea French (official), each ethnic group has its own language
Guinea-BissauGuinea-Bissau Portuguese (official), Crioulo, African languages
GuyanaGuyana English, Amerindian dialects, Creole, Hindi, Urdu
HaitiHaiti French (official), Creole (official)
Holy See (Vatican City)Holy See (Vatican City) Italian, Latin, French, various other languages
HondurasHonduras Spanish, Amerindian dialects
Hong KongHong Kong Chinese (Cantonese), English; both are official
HungaryHungary Hungarian 98.2%, other 1.8%
IcelandIceland Icelandic, English, Nordic languages, German widely spoken
IndiaIndia English enjoys associate status but is the most important language for national, political, and commercial communication; Hindi is the national language and primary tongue of 30% of the people; there are 14 other official languages: Bengali, Telugu, Marathi, Tamil, Urdu, Gujarati, Malayalam, Kannada, Oriya, Punjabi, Assamese, Kashmiri, Sindhi, and Sanskrit; Hindustani is a popular variant of Hindi/Urdu spoken widely throughout northern India but is not an official language
IndonesiaIndonesia Bahasa Indonesia (official, modified form of Malay), English, Dutch, local dialects, the most widely spoken of which is Javanese
IranIran Persian and Persian dialects 58%, Turkic and Turkic dialects 26%, Kurdish 9%, Luri 2%, Balochi 1%, Arabic 1%, Turkish 1%, other 2%
IraqIraq Arabic, Kurdish (official in Kurdish regions), Assyrian, Armenian
IrelandIreland English is the language generally used, Irish (Gaelic) spoken mainly in areas located along the western seaboard
Isle of ManIsle of Man English, Manx Gaelic
IsraelIsrael Hebrew (official), Arabic used officially for Arab minority, English most commonly used foreign language
ItalyItaly Italian (official), German (parts of Trentino-Alto Adige region are predominantly German speaking), French (small French-speaking minority in Valle d'Aosta region), Slovene (Slovene-speaking minority in the Trieste-Gorizia area)
JamaicaJamaica English, patois English
JapanJapan Japanese
JerseyJersey English (official), French (official), Norman-French dialect spoken in country districts
JordanJordan Arabic (official), English widely understood among upper and middle classes
KazakhstanKazakhstan Kazakh (Qazaq, state language) 64.4%, Russian (official, used in everyday business, designated the "language of interethnic communication") 95% (2001 est.)
KenyaKenya English (official), Kiswahili (official), numerous indigenous languages
KiribatiKiribati I-Kiribati, English (official)
Korea, NorthKorea, North Korean
Korea, SouthKorea, South Korean, English widely taught in junior high and high school
KuwaitKuwait Arabic (official), English widely spoken
KyrgyzstanKyrgyzstan Kyrgyz - official language, Russian - official language

note: in December 2001, the Kyrgyzstani legislature made Russian an official language, equal in status to Kyrgyz
LaosLaos Lao (official), French, English, and various ethnic languages
LatviaLatvia Latvian (official), Lithuanian, Russian, other
LebanonLebanon Arabic (official), French, English, Armenian
LesothoLesotho Sesotho (southern Sotho), English (official), Zulu, Xhosa
LiberiaLiberia English 20% (official), some 20 ethnic group languages, of which a few can be written and are used in correspondence
LibyaLibya Arabic, Italian, English, all are widely understood in the major cities
LiechtensteinLiechtenstein German (official), Alemannic dialect
LithuaniaLithuania Lithuanian (official), Polish, Russian
LuxembourgLuxembourg Luxembourgish (national language), German (administrative language), French (administrative language)
MacauMacau Portuguese, Chinese (Cantonese)
Macedonia, The Former Yugoslav Republic ofMacedonia, The Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonian 70%, Albanian 21%, Turkish 3%, Serbo-Croatian 3%, other 3%
MadagascarMadagascar French (official), Malagasy (official)
MalawiMalawi English (official), Chichewa (official), other languages important regionally
MalaysiaMalaysia Bahasa Melayu (official), English, Chinese dialects (Cantonese, Mandarin, Hokkien, Hakka, Hainan, Foochow), Tamil, Telugu, Malayalam, Panjabi, Thai; note - in addition, in East Malaysia several indigenous languages are spoken, the largest of which are Iban and Kadazan
MaldivesMaldives Maldivian Dhivehi (dialect of Sinhala, script derived from Arabic), English spoken by most government officials
MaliMali French (official), Bambara 80%, numerous African languages
MaltaMalta Maltese (official), English (official)
Marshall IslandsMarshall Islands English (widely spoken as a second language, both English and Marshallese are official languages), two major Marshallese dialects from the Malayo-Polynesian family, Japanese
MartiniqueMartinique French, Creole patois
MauritaniaMauritania Hassaniya Arabic (official), Pulaar, Soninke, Wolof (official), French
MauritiusMauritius English (official), Creole, French (official), Hindi, Urdu, Hakka, Bhojpuri
MayotteMayotte Mahorian (a Swahili dialect), French (official language) spoken by 35% of the population
MexicoMexico Spanish, various Mayan, Nahuatl, and other regional indigenous languages
Micronesia, Federated States ofMicronesia, Federated States of English (official and common language), Trukese, Pohnpeian, Yapese, Kosrean, Ulithian, Woleaian, Nukuoro, Kapingamarangi
MoldovaMoldova Moldovan (official, virtually the same as the Romanian language), Russian (official), Gagauz (a Turkish dialect)
MonacoMonaco French (official), English, Italian, Monegasque
MongoliaMongolia Khalkha Mongol 90%, Turkic, Russian (1999)
MontserratMontserrat English
MoroccoMorocco Arabic (official), Berber dialects, French often the language of business, government, and diplomacy
MozambiqueMozambique Portuguese (official), indigenous dialects
NamibiaNamibia English 7% (official), Afrikaans common language of most of the population and about 60% of the white population, German 32%, indigenous languages: Oshivambo, Herero, Nama
NauruNauru Nauruan (official, a distinct Pacific Island language), English widely understood, spoken, and used for most government and commercial purposes
NepalNepal Nepali (official; spoken by 90% of the population), about a dozen other languages and about 30 major dialects; note - many in government and business also speak English (1995)
NetherlandsNetherlands Dutch
Netherlands AntillesNetherlands Antilles Dutch (official), Papiamento (a Spanish-Portuguese-Dutch-English dialect) predominates, English widely spoken, Spanish
New CaledoniaNew Caledonia French (official), 33 Melanesian-Polynesian dialects
New ZealandNew Zealand English (official), Maori (official)
NicaraguaNicaragua Spanish (official)

note: English and indigenous languages on Atlantic coast
NigerNiger French (official), Hausa, Djerma
NigeriaNigeria English (official), Hausa, Yoruba, Igbo (Ibo), Fulani
NiueNiue Niuean, a Polynesian language closely related to Tongan and Samoan; English
Norfolk IslandNorfolk Island English (official), Norfolk a mixture of 18th century English and ancient Tahitian
Northern Mariana IslandsNorthern Mariana Islands English, Chamorro, Carolinian

note: 86% of population speaks a language other than English at home
NorwayNorway Norwegian (official)

note: small Sami- and Finnish-speaking minorities
OmanOman Arabic (official), English, Baluchi, Urdu, Indian dialects
PakistanPakistan Punjabi 48%, Sindhi 12%, Siraiki (a Punjabi variant) 10%, Pashtu 8%, Urdu (official) 8%, Balochi 3%, Hindko 2%, Brahui 1%, English (official and lingua franca of Pakistani elite and most government ministries), Burushaski, and other 8%
PalauPalau English and Palauan official in all states except Sonsoral (Sonsorolese and English are official), Tobi (Tobi and English are official), and Angaur (Angaur, Japanese, and English are official)
PanamaPanama Spanish (official), English 14%

note: many Panamanians bilingual
Papua New GuineaPapua New Guinea English spoken by 1%-2%, pidgin English widespread, Motu spoken in Papua region

note: 715 indigenous languages
ParaguayParaguay Spanish (official), Guarani (official)
PeruPeru Spanish (official), Quechua (official), Aymara
PhilippinesPhilippines two official languages - Filipino (based on Tagalog) and English; eight major dialects - Tagalog, Cebuano, Ilocan, Hiligaynon or Ilonggo, Bicol, Waray, Pampango, and Pangasinense
Pitcairn IslandsPitcairn Islands English (official), Pitcairnese (mixture of an 18th century English dialect and a Tahitian dialect)
PolandPoland Polish
PortugalPortugal Portuguese
Puerto RicoPuerto Rico Spanish, English
QatarQatar Arabic (official), English commonly used as a second language
ReunionReunion French (official), Creole widely used
RomaniaRomania Romanian, Hungarian, German
RussiaRussia Russian, other
RwandaRwanda Kinyarwanda (official) universal Bantu vernacular, French (official), English (official), Kiswahili (Swahili) used in commercial centers
Saint HelenaSaint Helena English
Saint Kitts and NevisSaint Kitts and Nevis English
Saint LuciaSaint Lucia English (official), French patois
Saint Pierre and MiquelonSaint Pierre and Miquelon French (official)
Saint Vincent and the GrenadinesSaint Vincent and the Grenadines English, French patois
SamoaSamoa Samoan (Polynesian), English
San MarinoSan Marino Italian
Sao Tome and PrincipeSao Tome and Principe Portuguese (official)
Saudi ArabiaSaudi Arabia Arabic
SenegalSenegal French (official), Wolof, Pulaar, Jola, Mandinka
Serbia and MontenegroSerbia and Montenegro Serbian 95%, Albanian 5%
SeychellesSeychelles English (official), French (official), Creole
Sierra LeoneSierra Leone English (official, regular use limited to literate minority), Mende (principal vernacular in the south), Temne (principal vernacular in the north), Krio (English-based Creole, spoken by the descendants of freed Jamaican slaves who were settled in the Freetown area, a lingua franca and a first language for 10% of the population but understood by 95%)
SingaporeSingapore Chinese (official), Malay (official and national), Tamil (official), English (official)
SlovakiaSlovakia Slovak (official), Hungarian
SloveniaSlovenia Slovenian 91%, Serbo-Croatian 6%, other 3%
Solomon IslandsSolomon Islands Melanesian pidgin in much of the country is lingua franca; English is official but spoken by only 1%-2% of the population

note: 120 indigenous languages
SomaliaSomalia Somali (official), Arabic, Italian, English
South AfricaSouth Africa 11 official languages, including Afrikaans, English, Ndebele, Pedi, Sotho, Swazi, Tsonga, Tswana, Venda, Xhosa, Zulu
SpainSpain Castilian Spanish (official) 74%, Catalan 17%, Galician 7%, Basque 2%
Sri LankaSri Lanka Sinhala (official and national language) 74%, Tamil (national language) 18%, other 8%

note: English is commonly used in government and is spoken competently by about 10% of the population
SudanSudan Arabic (official), Nubian, Ta Bedawie, diverse dialects of Nilotic, Nilo-Hamitic, Sudanic languages, English

note: program of "Arabization" in process
SurinameSuriname Dutch (official), English (widely spoken), Sranang Tongo (Surinamese, sometimes called Taki-Taki, is native language of Creoles and much of the younger population and is lingua franca among others), Hindustani (a dialect of Hindi), Javanese
SvalbardSvalbard Russian, Norwegian
SwazilandSwaziland English (official, government business conducted in English), siSwati (official)
SwedenSweden Swedish

note: small Sami- and Finnish-speaking minorities
SwitzerlandSwitzerland German (official) 63.7%, French (official) 19.2%, Italian (official) 7.6%, Romansch 0.6%, other 8.9%
SyriaSyria Arabic (official); Kurdish, Armenian, Aramaic, Circassian widely understood; French, English somewhat understood
TaiwanTaiwan Mandarin Chinese (official), Taiwanese (Min), Hakka dialects
TajikistanTajikistan Tajik (official), Russian widely used in government and business
TanzaniaTanzania Kiswahili or Swahili (official), Kiunguju (name for Swahili in Zanzibar), English (official, primary language of commerce, administration, and higher education), Arabic (widely spoken in Zanzibar), many local languages

note: Kiswahili (Swahili) is the mother tongue of the Bantu people living in Zanzibar and nearby coastal Tanzania; although Kiswahili is Bantu in structure and origin, its vocabulary draws on a variety of sources, including Arabic and English, and it has become the lingua franca of central and eastern Africa; the first language of most people is one of the local languages
ThailandThailand Thai, English (secondary language of the elite), ethnic and regional dialects
TogoTogo French (official and the language of commerce), Ewe and Mina (the two major African languages in the south), Kabye (sometimes spelled Kabiye) and Dagomba (the two major African languages in the north)
TokelauTokelau Tokelauan (a Polynesian language), English
TongaTonga Tongan, English
Trinidad and TobagoTrinidad and Tobago English (official), Hindi, French, Spanish, Chinese
TunisiaTunisia Arabic (official and one of the languages of commerce), French (commerce)
TurkeyTurkey Turkish (official), Kurdish, Arabic, Armenian, Greek
TurkmenistanTurkmenistan Turkmen 72%, Russian 12%, Uzbek 9%, other 7%
Turks and Caicos IslandsTurks and Caicos Islands English (official)
TuvaluTuvalu Tuvaluan, English, Samoan, Kiribati (on the island of Nui)
UgandaUganda English (official national language, taught in grade schools, used in courts of law and by most newspapers and some radio broadcasts), Ganda or Luganda (most widely used of the Niger-Congo languages, preferred for native language publications in the capital and may be taught in school), other Niger-Congo languages, Nilo-Saharan languages, Swahili, Arabic
UkraineUkraine Ukrainian, Russian, Romanian, Polish, Hungarian
United Arab EmiratesUnited Arab Emirates Arabic (official), Persian, English, Hindi, Urdu
United KingdomUnited Kingdom English, Welsh (about 26% of the population of Wales), Scottish form of Gaelic (about 60,000 in Scotland)
United StatesUnited States English, Spanish (spoken by a sizable minority)
UruguayUruguay Spanish, Portunol, or Brazilero (Portuguese-Spanish mix on the Brazilian frontier)
UzbekistanUzbekistan Uzbek 74.3%, Russian 14.2%, Tajik 4.4%, other 7.1%
VanuatuVanuatu three official languages: English, French, pidgin (known as Bislama or Bichelama), plus more than 100 local languages
VenezuelaVenezuela Spanish (official), numerous indigenous dialects
VietnamVietnam Vietnamese (official), English (increasingly favored as a second language), some French, Chinese, and Khmer; mountain area languages (Mon-Khmer and Malayo-Polynesian)
Virgin IslandsVirgin Islands English (official), Spanish, Creole
Wallis and FutunaWallis and Futuna French, Wallisian (indigenous Polynesian language)
West BankWest Bank Arabic, Hebrew (spoken by Israeli settlers and many Palestinians), English (widely understood)
Western SaharaWestern Sahara Hassaniya Arabic, Moroccan Arabic
WorldWorld Chinese, Mandarin 14.37%, Hindi 6.02%, English 5.61%, Spanish 5.59%, Bengali 3.4%, Portuguese 2.63%, Russian 2.75%, Japanese 2.06%, German, Standard 1.64%, Korean 1.28%, French 1.27% (2000 est.)

note: percents are for "first language" speakers only
YemenYemen Arabic
ZambiaZambia English (official), major vernaculars - Bemba, Kaonda, Lozi, Lunda, Luvale, Nyanja, Tonga, and about 70 other indigenous languages
ZimbabweZimbabwe English (official), Shona, Sindebele (the language of the Ndebele, sometimes called Ndebele), numerous but minor tribal dialects
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