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A recent study reveals that the majority of people speak Maltese as their first language

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    The majority of the population still consider Maltese to be their first language, a survey has revealed. 

    The survey was carried out by the National Council for the Maltese Language and the Department of Maltese at the University of Malta, in collaboration with the National Statistics Office. 

    Carried out on a sample of over 1,000 Maltese citizens, 97% said they consider Maltese as their primary language. 

    The study shows that the Maltese language is very strong among nationals, even though, being a bilingual country, the Maltese are particularly exposed to English in domains like commerce, education, mass communication and in their daily life. 

    Researchers working on the study said that this signals a positive trend for the future of the national language. 

    75% said that they speak to their children in Maltese, with 5% saying they speak to their children in English. The remaining 20% switch between the two languages or prefer another language. 

    64% said they prefer to follow the television news and current affairs programmes in Maltese, while 5% prefer English. 

    On the other hand, only 32% prefer to read a printed or online newspaper in Maltese, with 28% preferring to read in English. 

    When it comes to writing formal letters or emails, the majority (54%) prefer English, with 20% opting for Maltese.

    When using social media, 30% prefer to use English, and 37% prefer Maltese. 

    On people’s attitudes towards Maltese and English, 53% agreed a Maltese advert is more effective than in English. 

    80% agreed Maltese music should be played more on local radio stations. 

    The study showed 57% of people feel it is easier to speak and understand Maltese than English, but only 31% of the population feels it is easier to read and write in Maltese. 

    The full study can be accessed here.

    READ ALSO: MaltaToday Survey | In bilingual Malta, Maltese is the spoken language of choice


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