List of countries where French is an official language

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to: navigation, search

The following is a list of sovereign states and territories where French is an official or de facto language.

Countries where French is an official language[edit]

The ten most populated French-speaking countries according to the CIA "World factbook". Please note that French is not a de jure official language in Morocco and Algeria.
The ten countries with the largest number of French speakers, 2005, according to the Organisation internationale de la Francophonie (OIF), full and partial speakers combined.

The following is a list of the 29 countries where French is an official language. Note that in most of these countries, French is not the only language, and therefore the population does not indicate the number of French-speakers.

In Belgium, the official languages are French, Dutch, and German. The country is divided in four linguistic parts: Brussels (officially bilingual, de facto French-speaking majority), Wallonia (French) and Flanders (Dutch) and the German-speaking Community. See further: Languages of Belgium.

French in Cameroon is another example of the heterogeneous Francophone world. It is different from the French spoken in France, Canada, or Gabon. There are different varieties of Cameroon French. French of Cameroon’s North part is different from French of the country’s South part. This is due to the fact that the country is neither socially nor culturally uniform. As a consequence, French will be different from one province/department to another.[1] See further: languages of Cameroon.

In Canada, French was introduced during the 17th century with the French explorer Jacques Cartier in 1554. Quebec was founded by the French Samuel de Champlain in 1608. There are high chances that French immigrants going to Nouvelle-France (New France) had to have good knowledge of regional French before their departure. Nowadays, the official languages in Canada are English and French; however, only the province of Quebec has a French-speaking majority. Sizable French-speaking minorities exist in the provinces of Nova Scotia, New Brunswick, Ontario, and Manitoba.

Nr. Country Continent Population (2010)[2][3] French-speakers (2005 estimation)[4][5] Partial-French speakers (2005 estimation) French-speakers, full and partial combined[6]
# - World 7,045,000,000 NA NA 223,010,000
# - Francophone World 367,428,669[citation needed] NA NA 194,790,000
1.  Democratic Republic of the Congo Africa 67,827,000 28,000,000 25,110,000 31,190,000
2.  France Europe 65,350,000 64,000,000 64,000,000 65,350,000
3.  Canada North America 34,207,000 7,741,955 2,848,745 10,590,700
4.  Madagascar Africa 21,146,551 865,000 2,664,200 4,020,200
5.  Cameroon Africa 19,958,692 2,950,300 4,393,100 7,200,000
6.  Ivory Coast Africa 21,571,060 12,740,000 NA 1,600,000
7.  Burkina Faso Africa 16,287,000 695,000 NA 3,260,000
8.  Niger Africa 15,891,000 1,260,000 NA 1,910,000
9.  Senegal Africa 12,861,259 1,170,000 2,457,000 3,630,000
10.  Mali Africa 14,517,029 1,107,000 NA 2,390,000
11.  Rwanda Africa 10,277,282 609,000 174,000 310,000
12.  Belgium Europe 10,827,951 4,300,000 2,000,000 6,830,000
13.  Guinea Africa 10,324,437 2,000,000 4,000,000 2,270,000
14.  Chad Africa 11,274,337 1,940,000 NA 1,610,000
15.  Haiti Central America 10,188,000 5,664,000 5,622,500 4,280,000
16.  Burundi Africa 8,519,005 390,000 234,000 680,000
17.  Benin Africa 9,212,000 739,200 1,402,800 2,940,000
18.   Switzerland Europe 7,782,520 1,509,600 2,072,000 5,400,000
19.  Togo Africa 6,780,000 2,000,000 NA 2,240,000
20.  Central African Republic Africa 4,410,873 945,000 NA 1,310,000
21.  Republic of the Congo Africa 4,043,318 1,200,000 1,200,000 2,130,000
22.  Gabon Africa 1,501,000 1,120,000 NA NA
23.  Comoros Africa 734,750 312,200 NA 150,000
24.  Equatorial Guinea Africa 700,401 100,000 200,000 190,000
25.  Djibouti Africa 888,716 159,800 450,000
26.  Luxembourg Europe 506,953 430,000 20,000 440,000
27.  Vanuatu Oceania 239,651 99,000 NA 99,000[not in citation given]
28.  Seychelles Africa 86,525 4,000 44,000 90,000
29.  Monaco Europe 35,407 23,400 NA 30,000

In addition to this, the Vatican City registers itself as a French-speaking country in the international organisations with which it has relationships.[citation needed]

Dependent entities where French is an official language[edit]

Nr. Entity Continent Population Status
1.  French Polynesia Oceania 267,000 Overseas Collectivity of France
2. New Caledonia New Caledonia Oceania 224,824 Overseas Collectivity of France
3. Aosta Valley Aosta Valley Europe 128,000 Autonomous Region of Italy
4.  Jersey Europe 91,533 British Crown dependency
5. Guernsey Guernsey Europe 66,000 British Crown dependency
6.  Saint Martin North America 29,376 Overseas Collectivity of France
7.  Wallis and Futuna Oceania 16,448 Overseas Collectivity of France
8.  Saint Barthélemy North America 7,492 Overseas Collectivity of France
9.  Saint Pierre and Miquelon North America 7,044 Overseas Collectivity of France
10.  French Southern and Antarctic Lands Antarctica, Africa 140 TAAF districts
11. France Clipperton North America 0 French state private property

Sub-national regions located within countries where French is the official national language are not included in this list. The five overseas regions of France (Départements d'Outre-Mer, or DOM): Guadeloupe, French Guiana, Martinique, Mayotte, and Réunion, have the same status as metropolitan France and are not listed here. French has a certain legal status in the American state of Louisiana but it's not considered de jure official.

Alphabetical list[edit]

See also[edit]

Notes and references[edit]

  1. ^ Bbiloa, E. (2004), La langue française au Cameroun, Peter Lang SA, Bern (Germany).
  2. ^ "World Atlas". World Atlas. 2010 estimates. Retrieved 2012-10-19. 
  3. ^ "Google Public Data Explorer". World Bank. Retrieved 20 October 2012. 
  4. ^ http://20mars.francophonie.org/IMG/pdf/FICHE_03_Nombre_de_francophones.pdf
  5. ^ Wolff, Alexandre (2010). La langue française dans le monde. Paris: Nathan. Retrieved October 7, 2012. 
  6. ^ members of OIF[dead link] and other countries[dead link]