Mandarin Speaking Countries in The World: Things You Didn’t Know

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Chinese is among the most significant languages in the history of human civilization, and this is no understatement. Chinese is not only one of the most commonly spoken languages in the world, but it is also one of the oldest. With more than 1.3 billion native speakers, you will be amazed to know how the mandarin language is used in which countries. 

Approximately 70% of the people in China can speak Standard Chinese, while only 10% can do so effectively. About one-fifth of the world’s population speaks Mandarin as their first language. It also significantly influenced the languages and cultures of other Asian nations, including Japanese, Korean, and Vietnamese.

What are Mandarin Speaking Countries in the world?

While it is evident that Mandarin Chinese is widely spoken in Asian countries, it would amaze you how many mandarin speaking countries and Chinese communities exist across the world. Mandarin Chinese may be heard on the streets of places ranging from the United States to South Africa and Nicaragua.

The countries where mandarin is spoken are Singapore, Taiwan, and Mainland China Standard Chinese and Mandarin. There are currently 297 spoken languages in China, according to experts. In Mainland China, Mandarin is “Putonghua” and is the universal language of all present Han people. 

In this article, we will discuss how many countries speak mandarin and facts about mandarin speaking countries in the world.

A Brief History of The Mandarin Language

Chinese symbols were used over 3000 years ago, which makes Chinese one of the oldest languages in the history of mankind. These carvings were discovered during the Shang Dynasty in 1600-1046 BCE.

The term ‘Mandarin’ originates from Portuguese and refers initially to imperial court officials and the language they spoke. The Beijing dialect was the imperial court’s formal language (Gunhuà). Although China has been around for centuries, Mandarin was not established until the twentieth century. China was deemed as a united nation for the first time under the emperor Qin Shihuangdi. This went on from 221.BC until the fall of the last dynasty in 1911.

Facts About the Mandarin Language

Chinese Is a Tonal Language:

Making the distinctions between the five tones while learning Chinese may be the most challenging aspect for English speakers studying the language for the first time. Chinese is a tonal language, so how you pronounce a word may significantly impact its meaning.

Chinese has the most words with similar sounds:

Chinese has many words with similar sounds due to its phonological system. Because of this, it can be challenging for non-native speakers to distinguish between distinct words and sound combinations. 

It is the Modern Pictographic Language:

The Chinese language was created using pictures. Most (but not all) of the Chinese symbols we still use today were inspired by long-ago depictions of the objects they are supposed to represent. This may be incredibly beneficial for individuals studying Chinese for the first time.

Chinese Characters are employed in other languages:

Japan adopted Chinese as their writing system because they required a written language, and similar adoption extended to other surrounding nations. As a result, Chinese influence can be found in the development of the languages of Japan, Korea, and Vietnam.

There are no articles, verb tenses, or plurals in Chinese.

Where Chinese characters are used, there aren’t any articles (“a,” “an,” or “the”), verb variations with tense and person, or plurals. It makes the language simpler to learn but also makes mastering English difficult for Chinese users.

Mandarin words does not exist in Mandarin Chinese:

Did you find this interesting Chinese language fact shocking? Yes, there are no terms in Chinese which translates to Mandarin (unless you mean the fruits!). Mandarin is most commonly referred to as putonghua by native speakers.

Over 96% of Chinese people are literate!

This is one of the most astounding Chinese language facts. Despite having over a billion people, China has one of the highest literacy rates in the world. It was 96.8% in 2018! Most Chinese people can read Mandarin regardless of age, economic or social level.

List of Main Mandarin Speaking Countries in the world:-

Mandarin Chinese is the official spoken language of countries like the People’s Republic of China and Taiwan. It is also made its way into one of the official languages of the United Nations. Let us see the mandarin language spoken in which country around the world.

Country2023 Population 
United States339,996,563
South Africa60,414,495

These are some of the top countries that speak Mandarin worldwide.

Mandarin-speaking region in India

India is a land of diversity. However, there are no states in India where the official language is Mandarin. But many Chinese language learning institutes throughout India provide one of the best internationally certified courses in Mandarin Chinese you can get!

Mandarin-speaking region in Europe

The United Kingdom contains many big Chinatowns in London, Manchester, and Liverpool. In reality, Liverpool’s Chinatown is Europe’s oldest. Johannesburg’s Chinatown has been a renowned tourist destination in Africa for decades. There are also significant Chinese populations in Nigeria, Mauritius, and Madagascar.

Mandarin speaking region in North and South America

The most significant Chinese communities in the United States are in New York City and San Francisco Chinatowns. Chinatowns in Los Angeles, San Jose, Chicago, and Honolulu also have a significant Chinese population and, as a result, Chinese speakers. Chinatowns in Vancouver and Toronto contain a substantial percentage of Chinese people in Canada.

Mandarin-speaking region in Asia-Oceanic


Chinese inhabitants speak as many as 292 active languages. The most widely spoken languages are from the Sino-Tibetan language family’s Sinitic branch, which includes Mandarin (spoken natively by 70% of the population) and other Chinese variations.

Hong Kong

Many individuals in the region speak both Chinese and English. Since the Handover in 1997, a rise in mainland Chinese immigrants and more contact with the mainland’s economy has brought a growing number of Mandarin speakers to Hong Kong. According to the 2011 census, 47.8% of the population speaks Mandarin, with 1.4 per cent speaking it as a primary language and 46.5 per cent speaking it as a second or third language.


The official languages of Singapore are Mandarin Chinese, Malay, English, and Tamil. Singaporean Mandarin is the most commonly spoken native language in Singapore, with 1.2 million people using it as their mother language. Singapore has several variants of Mandarin and other Chinese languages, such as Hokkien, Teochew, and Cantonese.

Myanmar (Burma) 

Mandarin Chinese is the official language of nearly half a million people in Myanmar, or more accurately, the Wa state of Myanmar. The Wa state differentiates itself from the rest of Myanmar in that its autonomous government is more comparable to that of China than that of Myanmar. The Wa state is much less diverse and multicultural, with Mandarin and the Wa language being the dominant languages.

Mandarin speaking region in Africa


Including Mandarin in the national college admissions test for students in selected high schools in Tanzania demonstrates how vital the Chinese language is in African society.


Similar actions have been taken in Kenya, where there has been a move for Mandarin to be taught in all schools alongside French, Arabic, and German.

South Africa

Chinese has been an alternative language subject for students in South Africa since 2014, while Mandarin was offered to selected secondary schools in Uganda in 2018.


Thousands of students in Nigeria have received Chinese language training from the country’s two Confucius Institutes.

Why Learn Mandarin?

After knowing about the rich and ancient culture, the history of Mandarin Chinese, and what country it is mandarin spoken in, it is no surprise that Mandarin Chinese is regarded as one of the essential languages in our modern world. Mandarin will enable you to converse with nearly everyone in China and Taiwan. However, Cantonese may be more valuable if you intend to concentrate your business on Guangdong Province or Hong Kong. 

Similarly, if you intend to do business in southern Taiwan, you may discover that Taiwanese is preferable for making commercial and personal connections.


  1. Is learning Chinese difficult?

Chinese is recognized to be a challenging language as it is the most difficult language in the world. Chinese characters are complicated to write because they are far more intricate than English.

  1. How many Chinese characters must you know?

There is no set maximum number of Chinese characters. Mastering 2000-3000 frequently used characters, on the other hand, is sufficient to cover daily interactions and readings.

  1. Do Hong Kong residents speak Mandarin?

Many people in Hong Kong can speak Mandarin. Cantonese and English are the two most popular languages there.

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