Muscat has a population of almost 600,000 people. Locals constitute only 60 percent of the population whilst expatriates account for a sizeable 40 percent of it. Muscat’s residents have experienced improvement in their standards of living and have shared in the wealth the city has generated as a result of the numerous construction and development projects, as well as the burgeoning tourism industry. The majority of the residents are Muslims, although there are many Christians as well as Hindus. The city boasts of a number of Mosques, churches as well as two Hindu temples and minorities are allowed to practice their religion without the interference of the state. A number of languages are spoken in Muscat including Arabic, English, Hindi, Urdu and Swahili. The population is truly a salad bowl of various nationalities. The residents are hospitable and friendly, as well as tolerant.