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Speaking the Language

Malta - Speaking the Language

Malta has two official languages: Maltese and English. The vast majority of Maltese people speak English, due largely to the country having been a British colony in the past. Italian is also now widely spoken in Malta, particularly among younger people, and Italian TV programmes are transmitted to the islands.

The Maltese language is Arabic in origin, but written in the Roman alphabet, and contains many words derived from English, French and Italian.

Added 01/03/06 by Diego - "It is my understanding while living in Malta that the opposite is actually true: Italian television and radio was reportedly the majority of programming available to the islands until the last couple of decades or so. Thus being, Italian was almost a necessity to the culture during that time. From my experience, I have seen a far greater percentage of Maltese 30+ years of age who speak fluent Italian, than the percentage of Maltese under 30 who speak Italian. Most programming available in Malta is now in English".

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