|Native to||mainly the Netherlands, Belgium, and Suriname, also in Aruba, Curaçao, and Sint Maarten, as well as France(French Flanders).|
mainly Western Europe, today also in South America and the Caribbean.|
Afrikaans is spoken in Southern Africa.
23 million (2006)|
Total: 28 million (not including speakers of closely related Afrikaans)
|Official language in||
Dutch is a West Germanic language and the native language of most of the population of the Netherlands, and about sixty percent of the populations of Belgium and Suriname, the three member states of the Dutch Language Union. Most speakers live in the European Union, where it is a first language for about 23 million and a second language for another 5 million people.
Dutch also holds official status in the Caribbean island nations of Aruba, Curaçao, and Sint Maarten, while Dutch or dialects assigned to it continue to be spoken in parts of France and Germany, and to a lesser extent, in Indonesia, and up to half a million native Dutch speakers may be living in the United States, Canada, and Australia. The Cape Dutch dialects of Southern Africa have been standardised into Afrikaans, a mutually intelligible daughter language of Dutch which today is spoken to some degree by an estimated total of 15 to 23 million people in South Africa and Namibia