Celebrate the European Day of Languages with Priority Freight
Since 2001, when the Council of Europe proclaimed it the European Day of Languages, 26 September has been a day to celebrate linguistic diversity and promote language learning.
Europe is rich in languages, with over 200 indigenous European tongues, and many more spoken by citizens whose family origin is from other continents. Since the end of the 18th century, the most widely spread language in Europe (both in terms of geography and the number of native speakers) has been Russian, and today, counting only native speakers, approximately 150 million Europeans speak Russian on a daily basis.
German is spoken by around 95 million native speakers, English and French by 65 million each, and Italian by 60 million. Of the other most widely spoken European languages, Spanish and Polish are each spoken by 40 million people, Ukrainian by 30 million and Romanian by 26 million.
Promoting language skills for all
One of the main messages of the European Day of Languages is that language skills are both a necessity and a right for everyone.
In today’s globalised business world, we have more opportunities than ever before to work or study in a different European country – but lack of ability to speak foreign language limits the choices for many people. Even when working in their own countries, people with foreign language skills increasingly find more opportunities open to them. English alone is no longer enough.
It’s not just about work, though. Language learning brings benefits to young and old, and you are never too old to learn a new language and to enjoy the opportunities it opens up. Even just learning a few words of the language of a country that you visit (for example on holiday), helps you to make new friends and contacts. And if that’s not enough, learning a language helps to keep your brain agile – there are studies that show that speaking several languages can delay the onset of Alzheimer’s by several years.
Learning other peoples’ languages is a way of helping us to understand each other better and overcome our cultural differences, and the Council of Europe believes that the ability to speak two or more languages reasonably well is important for people to be able to play their full part in democratic citizenship in Europe. When we are able to speak each other’s languages, our differences become smaller, and we recognise more and more of our similarities.
One of the purposes of celebrating language is to encouraging lifelong language learning in and out of school, whether for study purposes, for professional needs, or for pleasure and friendship.
Celebrating Europe’s diverse languages
When it comes to learning to speak a foreign language, English is currently the most popular foreign language in Europe, followed by German, French, Italian, Russian and Spanish. But the European Day of Languages also aims to diversify the range of languages people learn (to include less widely used languages).
Wilkommen, bienvenido, witamy and welcome to languages at Priority Freight
Here at Priority Freight, our diverse community of people and their languages is very important to us and our business. With strategically places offices in the UK, Spain, Germany and Poland, we deal on a daily basis with people all over Europe, not to mention the rest of the world.
As well as English, German, Polish and Spanish, over 17 languages are spoken by our multilingual, multicultural teams, including Russian, Italian, French, Lithuanian and Swedish. Our teams operate 24/7, 365, handling consignments in the UK, Europe and around the globe, and this linguistic and cultural variety helps us to create a service which surpasses that of our competitors. Each team includes specialist freight forwarders and logistics experts, and we’re proud to have such a diverse workforce, whose variety of talents, ideas and experience never fails to surprise and delight.