RDA Northern TerritoryCommunity profile
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RDA Northern Territory

Language spoken at home

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This topic has been updated with 2016 Census data for all areas. What's this?

In the RDA Northern Territory, 30% of people spoke a language other than English at home in 2016.

The RDA Northern Territory's language statistics show the proportion of the population who speak a language at home other than English. They indicate how culturally diverse a population is and the degree to which different ethnic groups and nationalities are retaining their language.

The RDA Northern Territory's language statistics should be analysed in conjunction with Country of Birth and Proficiency in English to assist in identifying specific cultural and ethnic groups in the area and the services required by the multicultural community.

Please note: Due to changes in ABS rules around perturbation and additivity of data to protect the confidentiality of individuals in 2016, counts of individual language groups and totals derived from them may differ slightly from those published by the ABS. For more information see notes on data confidentiality.

Derived from the Census question:

'Does the person speak a language other than English at home?'

Total population

Language spoken at home - Ranked by size
RDA Northern Territory - Total persons (Usual residence)20162011Change
Language (excludes English)Number%Greater Darwin %Number%Greater Darwin %2011 to 2016
Australian Indigenous Languages34,95615.30.834,44316.31.0+513
Filipino/Tagalog5,0382.23.13,0501.42.1+1,988
Greek3,2451.42.32,8361.32.3+409
Mandarin2,1630.91.41,1950.60.8+968
Malayalam1,2740.60.66000.30.3+674
Nepali1,2190.50.83930.20.3+826
Vietnamese1,2150.50.78620.40.6+353
Indonesian1,1910.50.89440.40.7+247
Thai8660.40.57330.30.5+133
Hindi8520.40.54450.20.2+407
German8420.40.47660.40.4+76
Italian7650.30.47480.40.5+17
Cantonese7290.30.56890.30.5+40
Punjabi6700.30.32760.10.2+394
French6460.30.44270.20.2+219
Portuguese5320.20.45450.30.4-13
Hakka5310.20.46150.30.5-84
Sinhalese5270.20.32280.10.2+299
Tamil5160.20.42760.10.2+240
Japanese5060.20.31970.10.1+309
Spanish4870.20.33620.20.2+125
Urdu4410.20.32210.10.1+220
Bengali4320.20.32010.10.2+231
Non-verbal so described3980.20.22300.10.1+168
Arabic3610.20.22960.10.2+65
Korean3600.20.22720.10.1+88
Shona3560.20.22630.10.1+93
Afrikaans3080.10.12950.10.2+13
Gujarati2750.10.2950.00.1+180
Telugu2550.10.21130.10.1+142
Khmer2510.10.21640.10.1+87
Dutch2430.10.12380.10.1+5
Swahili2320.10.11230.10.1+109
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Excludes languages with fewer than 20 people speaking them at home, or less than 0.1% of the total population.

Language spoken at home - Summary
RDA Northern Territory - Total persons (Usual residence)20162011Change
Language summaryNumber%Greater Darwin %Number%Greater Darwin %2011 to 2016
Speaks English only132,63458.067.9133,03262.872.7-398
Non-English total67,53729.520.356,69626.715.8+10,841
Not stated28,64312.511.822,22310.511.6+6,420

Source: Australian Bureau of Statistics, Census of Population and Housing 2011 and 2016. Compiled and presented by .id , the population experts.

Language spoken at home, 2016
Language spoken at home, 2016 Australian Indigenous Languages, Greater Darwin: 0.8% Filipino/Tagalog, Greater Darwin: 3.1% Greek, Greater Darwin: 2.3% Mandarin, Greater Darwin: 1.4% Malayalam, Greater Darwin: 0.6% Nepali, Greater Darwin: 0.8% Vietnamese, Greater Darwin: 0.7% Indonesian, Greater Darwin: 0.8% Thai, Greater Darwin: 0.5% Hindi, Greater Darwin: 0.5% Australian Indigenous Languages, RDA Northern Territory: 15.3% Filipino/Tagalog, RDA Northern Territory: 2.2% Greek, RDA Northern Territory: 1.4% Mandarin, RDA Northern Territory: 0.9% Malayalam, RDA Northern Territory: 0.6% Nepali, RDA Northern Territory: 0.5% Vietnamese, RDA Northern Territory: 0.5% Indonesian, RDA Northern Territory: 0.5% Thai, RDA Northern Territory: 0.4% Hindi, RDA Northern Territory: 0.4%
Source: Australian Bureau of Statistics, Census of Population and Housing, 2016 (Usual residence data)
Compiled and presented in profile.id by .id, the population experts.
Change in language spoken at home, 2011 to 2016
Change in language spoken at home, 2011 to 2016 Australian Indigenous Languages, RDA Northern Territory: +513 Filipino/Tagalog, RDA Northern Territory: +1,988 Greek, RDA Northern Territory: +409 Mandarin, RDA Northern Territory: +968 Malayalam, RDA Northern Territory: +674 Nepali, RDA Northern Territory: +826 Vietnamese, RDA Northern Territory: +353 Indonesian, RDA Northern Territory: +247 Thai, RDA Northern Territory: +133 Hindi, RDA Northern Territory: +407
Source: Australian Bureau of Statistics, Census of Population and Housing, 2011 and 2016 (Usual residence data)
Compiled and presented in profile.id by .id, the population experts.

Dominant groups

Analysis of the language spoken at home by the population of the RDA Northern Territory in 2016 compared to Greater Darwin shows that there was a smaller proportion of people who spoke English only, and a larger proportion of those speaking a non-English language (either exclusively, or in addition to English).

Overall, 58.0% of the population spoke English only, and 29.5% spoke a non-English language, compared with 67.9% and 20.3% respectively for Greater Darwin.

The dominant language spoken at home, other than English, in the RDA Northern Territory was Australian Indigenous Languages, with 15.3% of the population, or 34,956 people speaking this language at home.

The major difference between the languages spoken at home for the population of the RDA Northern Territory and Greater Darwin in 2016 was:

  • A larger percentage speaking Australian Indigenous Languages at home (15.3% compared to 0.8%)

Emerging groups

Between 2011 and 2016, the number of people who spoke a language other than English at home increased by 10,841 or 19.1%, and the number of people who spoke English only decreased by 398 or 0.3%.

The largest changes in the spoken languages of the population in the RDA Northern Territory between 2011 and 2016 were for those speaking:

  • Filipino/Tagalog (+1,988 persons)
  • Mandarin (+968 persons)
  • Nepali (+826 persons)
  • Malayalam (+674 persons)

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