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How Many Countries Speak Arabic Around the World?

How Many Countries Speak Arabic Around the World?

History of the Arabic Language

Arabic is one of the famous languages that have wide global popularity. It is part of the Central Semitic language family which includes Aramaic, Hebrew, and Phoenician. The Arabic language is believed to have evolved from Aramaic more than a millennium ago among the Bedouin nomadic tribes in the deserts of the Arabian peninsula.

In the 7th century, Arabic spread with the Islamic conquests which extended across the Middle East, North Africa, Central and Western Asia, and even it parts of China. The native Arab’s presence along with their language, religion, and culture on the other side of the world played a huge role in planting a seed for Arabic to sprout for centuries to come.

Nowadays, all Arabic speakers have their own native colloquial variety, reaching up to 30 different dialects. However, Modern Standard Arabic – which is the universal pluricentric variety preferred in the media, the workplace, professional translation, and the law – remains the only Arabic taught across all levels of education. All literary texts authored between the seventh and ninth centuries, as well as the Holy Quran, are written in Classical Arabic. 

Arabic Speaking Countries Map

The majority of Arabic speaking countries are concentrated in the Arabian Peninsula, the Middle East, and North Africa, which is known as “The Arab World”. However, there are around 25 Arab speaking countries that claim Arabic as an official or co-official language including Saudi Arabia, Chad, Algeria, Comoros, Eritrea, Djibouti, Egypt, Palestine, Lebanon, Iraq, Jordan, Lebanon, Kuwait, Mauritania, Morocco, Oman, Qatar, Somalia, Sudan, Syria, Tanzania, Bahrain, Tunisia, United Arab Emirates, and Yemen. Meanwhile, there are six sovereign states where Arabic is a national language or “recognized minority language” such as Turkey, Niger, Iran, Senegal, and Mali.

Today, Arabic is spreading once more outside the premises of its geographic concentration as more Arabic speakers migrate and settle all over the world, with generations after generations of Arabic speaking expats continue to live in Southeast Asia, Brazil, Europe, Canda, and the United States of America.

For a more detailed overview of the Arabic Speaking countries, check the table below:

Countries where Arabic is an Official Language

No

Country

Population

No. of Arabic Speakers

1

Egypt

100,000,000

82,449,200

2

Algeria

41,701,000

40,100,000

3

Sudan

40,235,000

28,164,500

4

Iraq

36,004,552

22,908,120

5

Morocco

35,250,000

25,003,930

6

Saudi Arabia

30,770,375

27,178,770

7

Yemen

23,833,000

14,671,000

8

Syria

20,956,000

17,951,639

9

Tunisia

10,982,754

10,800,500

10

Somalia

10,428,043

3,788,000

11

Chad

10,329,208

1,320,000

12

United Arab Emirates

9,346,129

3,607,600

13

Jordan

6,655,000

5,083,300

14

Eritrea

6,380,803

249,700

15

Libya

6,244,174

4,526,000

16

Lebanon

4,965,914

4,180,000

17

Palestine

4,484,000

3,762,076

18

Oman

4,055,418

2,518,816

19

Mauritania

3,359,185

3,140,000

20

Kuwait

2,789,000

1,735,000

21

Qatar

2,155,446

1,215,900

22

Bahrain

1,343,000

690,302

23

Tanzania

1,303,569

 

24

Djibouti

810,179

97,900

25

Comoros

798,000

 

 Table source Wikipedia

Why is Arabic Important?

Learning Arabic today, especially the Modern Standard Arabic, opens up a channel of communication with the world’s Arabic speaking population of more than 466 million people. Seeing that Arabic is concentrated in a part of the world that is witnessing a heavy boom in business development, real estate, construction, technology, and other industries, the language facilitates business opportunities in both public and private sectors. It also makes you a great candidate for diplomatic and political roles across the Arabic speaking countries. Otherwise, you would need a translation service to mediate communication. 

Don’t let any language barrier discourage you from expanding into the fast-growing economy of the Arabic speaking world. Get in touch with our team of industry-specific experts, and we’ll facilitate all of your written and spoken Arabic communication. 

For more information on Tarjama’s services, click here.

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