Spanish continues to grow in the world

The Cervantes high school is the Spanish public body that promotes and disseminates the Spanish language and Hispanic culture throughout the world. Since 1998, it has published a yearbook entitled “El español en el mundo” (Spanish in the world), which, since 2012, has included the report Spanish: “a living language” This document provides data on the situation of the Spanish language in the world in demographic, economic, scientific and cultural areas, as well as their presence in the digital world.

Spanish is fashionable

This year’s report shows spectacular figures. In 2019, there are almost 438 million native Spanish speakers. If we also take into account those with limited language proficiency and those who study the language as a foreign language, the figure rises to 580 million. This makes it the second most widely spoken mother tongue in the world, behind only Mandarin Chinese and ahead of English.

While the percentage of native speakers of Chinese, English and French is declining, the demographic weight of Spanish is propitiating its moderate but continuous growth until 2050, when there will be 756 million Spanish speakers (with varying degrees of proficiency). Today, 7.6% of the world’s population is Spanish-speaking, and the figure will rise by 0.1% within three decades.

Spanish language figures around the worldBy 2100, the number of Spanish speakers is expected to drop to 6.6%, due to the decline of the Spanish-speaking population and the demographic explosion in much of the French-speaking countries of Africa. However, by that date the number of native Spanish speakers will still outnumber the native English and French speaking community.

Betting on the Spanish language is betting on the future

We have already dedicated an article to business Spanish in which we explored the importance of Spanish in the international sphere and in commercial relations. According to this year’s Cervantes Institute report, Spanish is the fourth most powerful language in the world and the second language of international communication. The Spanish-speaking countries as a whole have a purchasing power of around 10% of world GDP.

In addition, Spanish language proficiency increases foreign direct investment flows sevenfold. As a result, more and more companies around the world are interested in establishing relations with Spanish-speaking countries and localising their products in the Spanish-speaking market. To give an idea of the importance of Spanish in the world, by 2060, the United States will be the second largest Spanish-speaking country after Mexico.

The importance of Spanish in social networksSpain also ranks third in the UN and fourth in the EU institutions. If we look at social networks and the Internet, Spanish is the third most used language on the web and the second most used on social networks such as Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter or Wikipedia.

Proficiency in Spanish opens doors for professionals with ambitions to grow in the labour market and open new doors in an increasingly competitive market. Knowing a language as important and in demand as Spanish makes applicants stand out in their job interviews and help them reach new horizons in their lives and careers.

Almost 22 million people have already started learning Spanish in 2019. What are you waiting for to join them?

Learn Spanish in Madrid


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