LONDON, November 8, 2017 /PRNewswire/ --
As Britain heads for Brexit, English, the language of business, will be one of its most vital strengths, making the country more appealing and attracting trade and investment.
The importance of the English language to the UK has been highlighted by the publication of a global ranking of the world's best non-native English speakers, released by international education company, EF Education First.
Of the 80 countries ranked by the EF English Proficiency Index (EF EPI), over half saw an improvement since last year.
The report is being launched in the UK for the first time, demonstrating how important English is for the UK, as the country looks to strengthen global relationships, particularly in new markets outside Europe. Although Europeans still have the best English, it is not by much. Europe's regional score is only slightly higher than Asia's, with Latin America showing signs of improvement.
The significance of English was confirmed by the celebrated author, Sebastian Faulks CBE, as he spoke at the EF EPI 2017 launch event held two days ago in the House of Commons. Faulks celebrated the English language as a key asset to the UK.
QUOTE FROM SEBASTIAN FAULKS:
"The English language is our greatest national treasure that we must continue to promote."
QUOTE FROM MINH N TRAN:
Senior Director, Research and Academic Partnerships at EF Education First
"It is no coincidence that EF is launching the EF EPI in the UK now, when Britain is approaching Brexit and seeks to develop new partnerships. English proficiency across the globe is becoming more significant, transcending borders and offering new opportunities."
The EF EPI 2017 ranks 80 countries and territories based on data from more than one million adults who took the EF Standard English Test (EF SET), the world's first free standardised English test.
Highlights of the EF EPI 2017 include:
- For the first time, Africa is included in the EF EPI as a distinct region with nine African countries represented.
- Asia has the world's second best proficiency.
- Panama, Saudi Arabia, Singapore, and Thailand showed significant gains from last year.
- Women speak English better than men.
- Younger people have better English than older people.
- English proficiency is linked to economic competitiveness, social development, and innovation.
- Countries with higher English proficiency tend to have higher average incomes, better quality of life, and more investment in research and development.
The full EF English Proficiency Index 2017 rankings can be found on http://www.ef.co.uk/epi/.
About EF Education First
EF Education First is an international education company that focuses on language, academics, and cultural experience. Founded in 1965, EF's mission is "opening the world through education". EF has more than 500 schools and offices in over 50 countries.
SOURCE EF Education First (EF)