The government in Saudi Arabia has decreed that the English language is to be banned by all government and private agencies. They must now use only Arabic, the language of the Quran.
The Gulf News reported that the use of the English language, widely used in business, has been banned, as has the use of the Gregorian calendar. The Islamic Hijri calendar will replace all use of Gregorian dates which are being used unnecessarily, according to a statement issued by a Saudi Ministry.
The statement went on to explain the reason for the ban as an attempt to preserve the Arabic language and the Islamic calendar. Arabic is the official language of Saudi Arabia but the English language is common in companies and hotels, and is a compulsory second language in schools.
It is unclear how the decree will affect business conducted in the Kingdom. Arab News highlighted the fact "English has necessarily become the language of business" due to the presence of so many foreign workers in Saudi Arabia.