Spanish gains 3 million native speakers but loses students

The use and knowledge of Spanish has grown throughout the world, with almost 500 million native speakers, 3 million more than in 2021, but this increase has been slowed down by the consequences of the pandemic, just as the number of students.

NewsEditor
NewsEditor
26 October 2022 Wednesday 20:49
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Spanish gains 3 million native speakers but loses students

The use and knowledge of Spanish has grown throughout the world, with almost 500 million native speakers, 3 million more than in 2021, but this increase has been slowed down by the consequences of the pandemic, just as the number of students.

These are some of the data from the Instituto Cervantes yearbook on Spanish in the world, presented today, which show that the number of speakers will continue to grow over the next five decades, although their relative weight will progressively decrease between now and the end of century.

Spanish has 496 million native speakers, and 595 million (four more than in 2021), if you add those with limited proficiency and students. It continues to be the second mother tongue, after Chinese, and the fourth in the global calculation.

But, according to the report, the rate of growth of the Spanish-speaking community has been slowed by demographic trends.

In addition, the impact of covid has caused excess mortality in countries where Spanish is the official language, with one and a half million deaths. The pandemic is also behind the reduction in the number of students, due to mobility restrictions: there were 320,000 fewer, so they have stood at 23,748,298.

The director of the Cervantes Institute, Luis García Montero, has recalled the expansion of the center, present in 92 cities in 47 countries, in addition to the two offices in Spain. The next openings will be in Seoul (South Korea) and Bangalore (India).

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