Tagalog

Tagalog Speaking AreasTagalog is the national language of the Philippines. However, since the country counts 183 living languages, it is the first language of a quarter of the population, and the second one for the majority. An estimated 24.2 million people worldwide are native Tagalog speakers.

Due to colonisation, Spanish has been the traditional official language of the Philippines until the early 20th century. Then, the US occupiers introduced, English at schools, and later added it to the constitution as a national language alongside with Spanish.

However, the government had the will to establish the main national language based on one of the existing native languages. The Philippines chose Tagalog as the base language. In 1973 it became the joint official language along with English.

Tagalog is an Austronesian language with outside influences from Malay and Chinese first. Later on from both Spanish and American English had their influence. It used to have its own writing system based on an ancient script called Baybayin. However, authorities even changed the modern alphabet to incorporate foreign sounds from both Spanish and English.

In Hong Kong, there has always been an interest by residents in visiting the Philippines mainly for leisure. Our city is the 9th largest source of visitors.

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