10 Asian Countries That Speak English as the Official Language

English is the third most-spoken language in the world after the Chinese language and Spanish. About 372 million natives and about a billion non-native speakers are conversant.

Asian countries that speak English

In a world that’s going global at a rapid pace, English is the language of business and trade. It has become the go-to language for communication across all regions. It is estimated that more than 1 billion people speak it as their first language.

Next, it is the language of international communication. It is spoken by more than 450 million people, making it the most widely spoken language in the world.

English has also become a lingua franca, which means that it is used as a common language among different countries and cultures.

English in Asia

There are few native English speakers in Asia, but a large number of the population use English as a second or third language. A good example of English being used as a lingua franca in India. At present, more than 2% of the world’s 975 million native speakers are residents of Asia. Famous places where it is spoken include Bahrain, Hong Kong, and Singapore.  Other examples include Australia and Japan.

Of course, some people like to learn other languages such as Japanese due to the cultural connection between Japan and English-speaking countries in Asia–the United States and the United Kingdom; while Malaysia’s national language is Malay which uses a phonetic alphabet derived from the Latin.

English Speaking Countries In Asia

1- India

About 40% of the population in India can communicate in English.

Some Indians think that India has a large number of native speakers but they are mistaken. The national language, Hindi is from Sanskrit and it is not related to the English language which was borrowed from French.

the official language of India is Hindi which belongs to the Indo-Aryan subfamily of languages, mainly spoken by the Hindu caste most are using English but currently are 20 members states have their official language.

India was very popular for education places because plans were saying that all plans should be based on English.

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2- Philippines

Filipinos use English as their official language and it is taught in all schools. In addition, English is the second language of most people in the Philippines.

3- Singapore

English is Singapore’s official language and it is taught in all schools. In addition, English is the second language of most people in Singapore. It is also used as a lingua franca between different ethnic groups in the United States of America.

Singapore is very famous for respect towards foreign countries because its system of government was called with Singapore Statement Rule which means that every country wants this stage to keep its integrity.

4- Malaysia

has the native Malay language but most of them are happy to learn other languages such as Japanese because there was a close relationship between the two countries.

English In Malaysia is spoken as the national lingua franca.

Malaysia”s school system uses both English and Mandarin as official languages. All Malaysian students start their education by learning the national language and then switching to English.

5- China

As an official language, Mandarin is mainly used in the main cities with English being used to communicate between different cultures. Plus, there are many English language schools and universities in China. English there is taught as a second language.

These days, more and more Chinese people attend English courses to improve their language skills and increase their chances of getting better jobs.

However, Chinese schools follow a similar system but they start their education by starting at the other end. They switch from learning in Chinese to studying in English for two years before also bringing them back to learn Mandarin during either of their last three years of secondary school.

These days, English is the second language in China and should be learned for sure because of the Sino-British relationship that continues through to this day.

Chinese parents realized that English is essential for their children to succeed in life and they love having their borders full of international schools.

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6- Indonesia

Indonesian people are very used to learning other languages because many of the Indonesian citizens have lived in different countries over their entire lifetime, therefore they can learn English.

Indonesia is the third most populous country in Asia, with a population of over 193 million people. Indonesia has diverse languages and ethnicities, which makes it a complex society. It also excepts many different cultures from outside Asia. The official language for Indonesia is Bahasa Indonesia (Indonesian).

7- Taiwan

These people were able to maintain their social status because of knowing English.

Although most Taiwanese had started learning English only by the end of primary school, they learned it more intensely during middle school and higher education. Most teachers did not encourage them to learn oral communication but instead audio-visual presentation, so they did not have much practice talking in English.

Other than the cause of lack of confidence, what is considered the main obstacle for Taiwanese people to study and speak English fluently is their limited time available for such education. This can be described by several surveys among council leaders who graduated from English language training institutes in Taiwan whose main concern was the time they spent on their language studies.

8- Pakistan

In Pakistan, English is used as a second language. In addition to being learned by students in schools and universities, it continues to be an important means of communication for business people as well not only with many businesses across the world but also with their foreign customers. There are numerous companies offering courses on how to improve one’s English.

Former president of Pakistan and head of the “Literary Club” on Pakistani television, General Pervez Musharraf has been quoted as saying: “Pakistan has achieved a great deal despite lacking resources and we will achieve more if we learn to maximize our limited superpower”.

9- Thailand

Due to continued problems regarding the education of Thai children, many parents are taking their preschoolers abroad for English Education. This shows that despite the public school system in Thailand being very good at the secondary level, it is far behind when compared with other developed countries like South Africa during the Apartheid era where only 10 years of education was mandatory.

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10- New Zealand

Almost all children go to school in New Zealand. When visiting Auckland, you will find a bustling mall with many English words and signage on the windows such as a pizza hut, the co-op and a bar. In New Zealand, English is an essential skill for working in the public sector, major companies especially in hi-tech fields such as the film production industry also have large specialists from overseas.

Also, there are Arabian countries like the UAE and Saudi Arabia that have a significant amount of people who learn English as a foreign language. Usually, these countries use it mainly for higher education or business sectors because the national languages are Persian and Arabic respectively.

English is a global language and it is the most widely spoken language in the world. It has been adopted by many countries as their official languages, such as Canada, Australia,

Europe, New Zealand, and the United States of America. Many people from these countries learn English because they want to be able to communicate with other nations or for business purposes.

FAQ

What is the most spoken language in North Africa & the Middle East?

Arabic is by far the most widely spoken language in the Middle East and North Africa (henceforth MENA)

Which countries in Asia have English as their official language?

Many countries in Asia have English as their official language.

Some of the countries include Japan, Australia, New Zealand, South Korea, Singapore, and Taiwan.

Is English widely spoken in Asia?

The answer to this question is a simple yes. English is the most widely spoken language in Asia and is also an official language of many countries including India, China, Japan, and Vietnam.