- List of countries where English is an official language
The following is a list of
sovereign states and territories where English is an official language, in order of population. Several of these nations, like India, Ireland, New Zealand, Canadaand the Philippines, use English as an official language but not the sole official language.
This list also includes countries where English is the dominant language, but does not have official status. In
Australia, English is spoken by the vast majority of the population and is the only language used in government institutions, yet Australia does not have an official language. This is the same in the U.S. and the UK, although some states or regions within the UK and the U.S. have English as an official language.
The status of English as a country's official language does not necessarily correlate with the number of English-speakers in that country.
India, for example, with a population of 1.1 billion, has fewer than 200,000 native speakers of English and approximately 100 million second-language English speakers (who form less than 10% of its population). Nigeriaon the other hand, has a small percentage of "Standard English" second-language speakers; however, more than 60% of its population speaks Nigerian Pidgin English, which although not a dialect of English, does contain many English words and possesses an English-"like" grammatical structure.
Almost all of these countries are current or former colonies or dependencies of the
UK(see also British Empire). The notable exceptions are Madagascar, which is a former French colony with English speaking neighbours, and the Philippines, which is a former U.S. dependency.
India's linguistic picture is complex. According to the
Constitution of India, "Hindi in the Devanagariscript" is the official language of the union  however, English is mandated for the authoritative texts of all federal laws and Supreme Court decisions, and (along with Hindi) is one of the two languages of the Indian Parliament. See Official languages of India.
These nations total 2.135 billion people, cover 15,583,152 square miles, and have a combined GDP of about 18 trillion US dollars.
List of countries by English-speaking population
:The population figures are based on
List of countries by population.:Hong Kong is a special administrative regionof the People's Republic of China:Puerto Rico is, historically and geographically, connected to the Spanish-speaking Caribbean; Spanish is the main language of the majority of Puerto Ricans. Puerto Rico is an unincorporated United States territory referred to as a "Commonwealth":Guam is an organized unincorporated territory of the United States:The US Virgin Islands is an insular area of the United States:Jersey is a British Crown dependency:The Northern Mariana Islands is a commonwealthin political unionwith the United States:Isle of Man is a British Crown dependency:Bermuda is an overseas territoryof the United Kingdom:Guernsey is a British Crown dependency:American Samoa is an unincorporated U.S. territory:Christmas Island is an external territory of Australia:Pitcairn Islands is a British overseas territory:Widely spoken but not an official language
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