The 2013 census records over 68 languages spoken in Benin, making it one of Africa’s most linguistically diverse countries. French is the country’s official language, while Fon, Yom and Yoruba have the status of national languages. The census indicates that Fon is the most widely spoken as a first language (20% of the population), followed by Baatonum (9%) and Borgu Fulfulde (8%).
Fon, Gun are most prevalent in the south of the country, where urban populations are concentrated. At least six major languages are spoken in the north, including Baatonum, Biali, Dendi, Fulfulde and Yom.
French is used for official government communications, and is spoken as a second language by roughly 35% of the population in 2013, an increase on the 25% recorded in 2002. At least 14% of the population use Yoruba to communicate with speakers of other languages. Most Beninese speak more than one language.