Top 10 Languages Spoken in Australia – 2016 Census
The Australian population as at the 2016 Census was 23.4 million people, with one in five Australians now speaking a language other than English at home. The top five are Mandarin (2.5%), Arabic (1.4%), Cantonese (1.2%), Vietnamese (1.2%) and Italian (1.2%). A considerable proportion of first- and second-generation migrants are bilingual.
Did you know?
- Australia doesn’t have an official language.
- Around 150 Aboriginal languages are spoken in Australia, half the number before the arrival of Europeans.
- According to the 2016 Census, there were there 300 separately identified languages spoken in Australian homes.
So what languages should I translate my brochure into?
It depends on the audience you are trying to reach. You can use the top ten as a guide, but here are a few others worth considering:
- languages spoken by humanitarian entrants: Dari, Farsi (Persian), Burmese, Tamil, Khmer, etc…
- languages spoken by wide communities: Spanish, French, Portuguese,
- newly emerging languages (spoken by recently arrived refugees, such as Hazaragi, Rohingya…). However, services for these languages may be scarce.