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I've read this article on <The Telegraph>, although it is surveyed among British companies, but what do you guys think?
(These rankings are based on a survey carried out for the CBI Education & skills survey 2012, in which 542 UK firm managers were asked which languages are useful to their business.)
10. PortugueseBrazil recently overtook the United Kingdom as the world's sixth-largest economy, and with the football World Cup and 2016 Summer Olympics just around the corner, all eyes will be on this Portuguese-speaking "Bric" nation.
9. JapaneseCulture Secretary Jeremy Hunt's love of the lambada may have earned him more ridicule than respect, but his proficiency in Japanese – he spent two years teaching English in Japan – is held in high esteem among his parliamentary colleagues, and came in useful on a recent trade mission to Japan.
8. RussianRelations with Russia haven't exactly been warm since the end of the Cold War – from the Litvinenko poisoning to the infamous Moscow "spy rock" – but according to the Government's Trade & Investment website, Russia is the UK's fastest-growing major export market.
7. CantoneseThe majority of the UK's Cantonese speakers have ties to Hong Kong, where it is the official language. But Cantonese is spoken much more widely around the world, with nearly 70 million native speakers.
6. ArabicAny who doubts the importance of Arabic-speaking business to the United Kingdom's economy should take a look at The Shard – the tallest building in Western Europe was largely made possible by Qatari investment. Or they could just ask a Manchester City fan.
5. PolishPolish makes the top five, with 19 per cent of UK managers rating it as useful for their organisations. Large-scale Polish migration to the UK after the country's admission to the European Union made the headlines, but as the largest consumer market of the new EU member states and the only EU country to avoid recession since the downturn began, business ties with Poland extend considerably further.
4. Chinese (Mandarin)The official language of China – the world's most populous and economically dynamic nation – features highly in managers' preferences. In 2006 Brighton College became the first school in the United Kingdom to made studying Mandarin compulsory for all 13 year-olds.
3. SpanishValued as a major European language but also as the leading language of fast-growing Latin American economies – as well as its continued rise to prominence in the United States – Spanish is rated as useful by 37 per cent of the employers surveyed.
2. FrenchIt may be in seemingly terminal decline as a subject of study in our secondary education system, but proficiency in French remains a highly sought-after skill among UK employers, with 49 per cent rating it as useful for their organisations.
1. GermanGermany remains the largest single export market for British goods outside of the USA, and Europe's largest economy – with a GDP of more than €2.4 trillion – continues to defy the eurozone downturn. So it's no surprise that UK companies want to hire employees who know their umlauts from their eszetts.
Spanish is a good language to learn, but who is the situation of the world i recomend study germany, its better for your future than Spanish, german offer most opportunities to have a goog job:)
I'm curious how that list would be different if the survey was conducted in Australia. German, French and Spanish would probably be lower on the list and Mandarin, Canonese, Japanese and Arabic would certainly be higher. Some of Indonesian, Hindi, Greek and Italian would probably be on the list as well.
Interesting! The situation in my country is different though. I speak English and French but they companies don't care much about French. At work, they sometimes ask me a few words in French, because people here think it is a romantic language, but that is all. I think English remains a highly valued language in South America.
In the last years, many students go to Germany to study for a months. Another thing is many people are studying Chinese due to their economic development in these years. I agree with Marco Fierro, here people think French is the love language and English is much appreciated.
I would like to study German but I have no time to learn Russian.