Society

Countries Where Arabic is an Official Language

Arabic is recognized as an official language in many countries across the world.

Arabic is one of the most widely spoken languages in the world. On the list of the world’s most spoken languages, Arabic ranks fifth. It is the liturgical language of Muslims across the world. Arabic is included on the list of United Nations languages, and is taught in schools, spoken in workplaces, and used at official functions. Most languages in the Middle East and parts of Africa have been influenced by the Arabic language. Similarly, Arabic has been influenced by other languages such as Persian, Greek, English, and French. Arabic is the official language of countries such as Algeria, Bahrain, Jordan, Egypt, and Malta, among others.

Arabic In Algeria

Algeria is an African country and member of the Arab League with a population of 41,701,000. Algeria's two official languages are Arabic and Berber. Arabic was Algeria’s only official language until 2002, at which time Berber was also given official status. Close to 81% of Algerians speak and understand Arabic and the country's official documents are all written in the language. The Arabic dialect spoken in Algeria is commonly referred to as ‘Darja.' It is slightly different from the Standard Arabic spoken in the Middle East and other parts of the world. Algerian Arabic has been influenced by French, Berber, and Turkish languages. Although French is widely used in Algeria, it has no official status in the country.

Arabic In Bahrain

Bahrain is a country in the Middle East and member of the Arab League with a population of 1,343,000. Of this total, 81.4% speak Arabic. The country’s official language is Arabic, especially the Bahrani Arabic dialect, which is used in most books, magazines, newspapers, and official documents. The language has many dialects, which vary from urban areas to the countryside. English is also commonly used in Bahrain, particularly in the business community. Other foreign languages popularly in use in Bahrain are Farsi, Urdu, and Malayalam.

Arabic In Egypt

Egypt is a member of the Arab League and has a population of 90,000,000. More than 93% of the country's population speaks some form of Arabic. Modern Standard Arabic is Egypt's official language, which appears on most written documents and is used in schools across the country. There are many other variants of Arabic spoken in Egypt in addition to Egyptian Arabic. Arabic was introduced in Egypt by Arab invaders during the 7th century. Egyptian Arabic is a blend of the locally spoken languages, including Turkish, Berber, French and Italian. Egypt’s vibrant media industry has led to the spread of Egyptian Arabic to foreign countries such as Israel, Yemen, Saudi Arabia, and Kuwait.

Arabic In Jordan

Jordan is a member of the Arab League of Nations and has a population of 6,655,000. Arabic is the country's official language and is spoken by approximately 96% of the population. Jordan is a predominantly Muslim nation, and Modern Standard Arabic is the most commonly used variant of the Arabic language. Most Jordanians are native Arabic speakers. English is also widely used in the commercial sector, as well as in universities, but has no official status. Other foreign languages used in Jordan include French, Italian, Spanish, and German.

Classical Arabic And Modern Standard Arabic

The use of the Arabic language is widespread across Arab League nations as well as other countries outside the Arab League. Classical Arabic is the formal version of Arabic. It is complex, mainly found in the Quran and ancient texts. In contrast, Modern Standard Arabic is less complicated and is commonly used in modern Arabic texts.

Countries Where Arabic is an Official Language

RankCountryPopulationNotesNo. of Arabic Speakers % of Arabic SpeakersMember state of Arab League
1 Algeria41,701,000Co-official language, along with Berber40,100,00080.00Yes
2 Bahrain1,343,000Official language690,30281.4Yes
3 Chad10,329,208Co-official language, along with French1,320,0001.81No
4 Comoros798,000Co-official language, along with French and ComorianYes
5 Djibouti810,179Co-official language, along with French97,9001.32Yes
6 Egypt90,000,000Official language82,449,20093.18Yes
7 Eritrea6,380,803Co-official language, along with English and Tigrinya249,7003.83Observer status
8 Iraq36,004,552Co-official language, along with Kurdish22,908,12085.81Yes
9 Israel8,238,300Co-official language, along with Hebrew2,039,00024.82No
10 Jordan6,655,000Official language5,083,30096.93Yes
11 Kuwait2,789,000Official language1,735,00082.21Yes
12 Lebanon4,965,914Co-official language, along with French4,180,00091.44Yes
13 Libya6,244,174Official language4,526,00072.09Yes a
14 Malta445,426Maltese Arabic, Co-official language, along with English423,15495.00No
15 Mauritania3,359,185Official language3,140,00088.78Yes
16 Morocco33,250,000Co-official language, along with Berber25,003,93074.29Yes
17 Oman4,055,418Official language2,518,81688.6Yes
18 Palestine4,484,000Official language in Palestinian territories1,610,00037.49Yes
19 Qatar2,155,446Official language1,215,90075.39Yes
20 Saudi Arabia30,770,375Official language27,178,77095.62Yes
21 Somalia10,428,043Co-official language, along with Somali3,788,00031.26Yes
22 Sudan40,235,000Co-official language, along with English28,164,50070.00Yes
23 Syria20,956,000Official language17,951,63991.71Yes b
24 Tunisia10,982,754Official language10,800,50098.34Yes
25 United Arab Emirates9,346,129Official language3,607,60039.71Yes
26 Yemen23,833,000Official language14,671,00054.68Yes c

More in Society