Languages of Qatar: From Arabic to Nepali

Unveiling the multilingual tapestry of Qatar's population

The population of Qatar, officially the State of Qatar, is predicted to reach 2,672,522 in 2019. There is a vast range of linguistic and cultural diversity throughout the people.

The ex-pat population speaks a wide variety of languages, including local languages, non-native languages, and the languages of other immigrant groups. Arabic, English, French, Hindi, Urdu, Tagalog, Malaysian, Nepalese, and Baluchi are just a few of the languages spoken in Qatar.

The constitution of the country designates Arabic as the national language. Let’s take a look at this interesting part of Qatar’s culture together and every language that is spoken by a minority in Qatar.

A brief profile of Qatar

Qatar, sometimes known as the State of Qatar, is an independent country in southwestern Asia. It is located on the northeastern coast of the Arabian Peninsula, on the small peninsula of Qatar.

It is bordered to the south by Saudi Arabia and to the west, east, and north by the Persian Gulf. It is separated from the neighboring island of Bahrain by a canal in the Persian Gulf. It also prevents Qatar from having any common maritime borders with Iran or the UAE.

View of Qatar
View of Qatar

Despite its tiny size (10,360 square kilometers), Qatar is a wealthy nation due to its abundant supply of natural gas and oil. Doha is the country’s capital and largest city, with a population of little under 2 million.

You should know that about 88% of the people living there are temporary employees. Foreigners working and living in Qatar for a limited time are what this term refers to. The vast majority of them originate in South and Southeast Asia, as well as other Arabic countries. There are also people of Nepalese and Filipino descent.

Salwa, Iraq road sign Qataris are the locals name for the country’s Arab population. Although Arabic is the national language, English is widely used for professional purposes. It’s a second language for many people.

As a result of the country’s diverse population, several different languages and dialects are spoken in Qatar. The list goes on and on Urdu, Balochi, Malayalam, Pashto, Hindi, Telugu, Tagalog, Tamil, Sinhalese, Nelapi, and Bengali. We’ll take a quick look at a few of these languages below.

Arabic language as Qatar’s official language

The official language of Qatar is Arabic, and is spoken by millions of people throughout the world. It is also one of the most challenging languages to master. There is a richness and complexity to its literature, slang, insults, and love songs that are hard to find elsewhere.

Arabic language as Qatar’s official language
Arabic language as Qatar’s official language

Despite the negative connotations it may have, those that persevere will embark on a fascinating educational journey that will last them a lifetime.

As was previously said, Arabic is the standard language of Qatar. There are two distinct types, Gulf and Standard. Al Fus-Ha and Al Arabiya are other names for basic Arabic. Other names for the Gulf Arabic dialect include Khaliji and Qatari, and the dialect is further subdivided into South and North Qatari.

Yemen, Saudi Arabia, Kuwait, the United Arab Emirates, Dubai, Iran, Bahrain, and other Middle Eastern countries neighboring or bordering Qatar utilize and understand both classifications.

English as the second official language in Qatar

Since Qatar was originally a British territory, the English language is frequently utilized there. The government actively promotes this language to be spoken alongside Arabic. Arabic and non-Arabic speakers alike utilize English as a second language.

Since the country welcomes employees from all over the world, including those from China, Japan, Canada, India, South Africa, Pakistan, Thailand, the Philippines, and many more, English has become the de facto language of business and travel.

However, it is useful to learn a few words in the local language of the nation you visit. Your hosts and some of the natives you meet will be grateful and pleased if you take the time to learn a few words of Arabic.

English as the second official language in Qatar
English as the second official language in Qatar

Persian or Farsi spoken in Qatar

The people who speak Farsi are sometimes called Persians or Iranians, and the language is sometimes known as the Persian dialect. This group of people is indigenous to Iran.

This is the official language of Iran and belongs to the Indo-Iranian language family. In the twentieth century, a few Iranian boat builders brought the Farsi language to Qatar. About 30,000 people can trace their ancestry back to Iran, and the language of Farsi is currently widely used by this group.

Nepali spoken by locals in Qatar

Those hailing from Nepal who now make their home in Qatar speak Nepali. The vast majority of them are foreign employees, permanent residents, or their offspring born in the area.

The majority of Nepalese workers in Qatar are employed in the construction industry, making it a popular choice as a job destination for people from Nepal. While many foreign nationals are hired to do menial tasks, Nepalis are more in demand than ever before. There were 9,650 Nepalese immigrants in Qatar in 2010. Nepalese workers have a well-deserved reputation for integrity and dedication.

Minority languages spoken in Qatar

Some of the many minority languages spoken in Qatar include the following. While many Qataris speak more than one dialect, few ex-pats make an effort to acquire Arabic. Therefore, communication between natives and newcomers often takes place in English. In contrast, as was indicated before, the locals will be really grateful and pleased if you take the time to acquire a few words of Arabic.

languages spoken in Qatar
languages spoken in Qatar

Communities of immigrants living in Qatar have maintained their use of their native languages. Farsi, Urdu, Malayalam, and Sinhalese are just a few examples of these languages. Native Iranians and Iranians who have settled in Qatar speak Farsi, an Indo-Iranian language of the Persian dialect. Approximately 30,000 Qataris use Farsi as their primary language. Urdu, a Hindustani language, is spoken by over 100,000 people in Qatar. In quest of improved job prospects, the vast majority of these speakers relocated to Qatar. More than 200,000 people in Qatar can now speak Tagalog thanks to the Filipino diaspora. They are mostly immigrants or those whose ancestors were immigrants from another country. Sinhalese is a member of the Brahmic language family spoken by about 37,000 people in Qatar.


Qatar is home to a large group of minorities from different nations, and they come to the country looking for job opportunities and a better quality of life. All of these minorities have their own communities, and most of the ex-pats in the country are not fluent in Arabic.

The list of foreign languages spoken by different groups of minorities in Qatar goes on and on. We tried to introduce some of its most popular ones. Tell us more about your native language and whether it is spoken in Qatar or not by commenting on our social media accounts.

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