The British public’s appetite for learning foreign languages has increased significantly after the United Kingdom voted to leave the European Union, according to newly released data.
Languages app Lingvist says it has seen a 91 per cent increase in UK users since the EU referendum last June, having compared its user base during the nine months before the vote to its user base in the nine months after the vote.
The company says the popularity of English-Spanish courses has grown by 43 per cent amongst British users, with English-French courses experiencing a 23 per cent increase in popularity, English-German courses rising by 22 per cent and English-Russian courses rising by 12 per cent.
“With Brexit around the corner, the growing concerns around how the UK will be able to bridge the language skills gap have been brought to the fore,” said Lingvist co-founder and COO Ott Jalakas.
“Government statistics show that the UK is already losing £50bn a year due to poor language skills with an over-reliance on one language affecting business turnover, profitability and expansion to new markets.
“Our data shows that the UK is on the right path to bridge the language learning gap.”
European Commission President Jean Claude Juncker recently said, “Slowly but surely, English is losing importance in Europe.”
He made the claim ahead of a speech in Florence, which he delivered in French.
It’s one of the latest blows in an ongoing war of words between the UK and the EU, after Theresa May accused officials of trying to influence the result of the upcoming general election.
Details of a private meeting between Ms May and Mr Juncker were recently leaked to the German press, which Ms May was said to be furious about.
After the meeting, Mr Juncker reportedly told German Chancellor Angela Merkel that Ms May was “deluding herself” over Brexit.
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