Achieving robust language technologies that can perform well across the world’s many languages is a central goal of multilingual NLP. In this work, we take stock of and empirically analyse task performance disparities that exist between multilingual task-oriented dialogue (ToD) systems. We first define new quantitative measures of absolute and relative equivalence in system performance, capturing disparities across languages and within individual languages. Through a series of controlled experiments, we demonstrate that performance disparities depend on a number of factors: the nature of the ToD task at hand, the underlying pretrained language model, the target language, and the amount of ToD annotated data. We empirically prove the existence of the adaptation and intrinsic biases in current ToD systems: e.g., ToD systems trained for Arabic or Turkish using annotated ToD data fully parallel to English ToD data still exhibit diminished ToD task performance. Beyond providing a series of insights into the performance disparities of ToD systems in different languages, our analyses offer practical tips on how to approach ToD data collection and system development for new languages.