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Top 10 Fastest Growing Languages People Will Speak in the Future

Top 10 Fastest Growing Languages People Will Speak in the Future
Top 10 Fastest Growing Languages People Will Speak in the Future

Everything you need to know about the fastest growing languages

Today the talk is about fastest growing languages and their importance. Since we live in an ever-changing world, we should understand what foreign languages are becoming more common and what lingos are currently worth learning. 

How do languages grow and change over time? They grow in terms of speaker numbers (both native and total) and the size and shape of language family trees. This growth is associated with global population growing, migration trends, and other factors. 

Whether you are a student, an entrepreneur, or a traveler, you'll benefit from speaking the future language of the world.

Predictions on the Fastest Growing Languages in the World in the Next Decades

No one knows the exact answer to the question, “what is the language of the future?” However, using statistics and analyzing current trends, linguists and experts from other fields can predict the list of lingos that will grow faster than others. The report published by the British Council predicts that Hindi, Bengali, Urdu, and Indonesian will dominate much of the business world by 2050. It's expected that these lingos will be followed by Spanish, Portuguese, Arabic, and Russian. Experts believe that the linguistic direction of the business world will change a lot: it'll move away from Europe and North America and more toward Asia and the Middle East. However, this report doesn't provide a clear answer to the question, “is Chinese the language of the future or not?”

Duolingo report reveals that the fastest growing languages around the world are Asian: Hindi, Korean, Japanese, Turkish, and Chinese. They are spoken by communities that have a solid presence on social media and in pop culture worldwide. Considering growing power of digital media, we can expect that thousands of people will learn these lingos in the next ten years.

Surprisingly, Natixis, an investment bank, provided a totally different answer to the question, “what will be the most spoken language in 2050?” According to Natixis, French has a higher chance to become language of future than Spanish, Turkish, or Chinese. In contrast to others, French is growing fast in the fastest-growing areas of the world, particularly sub-Saharan Africa. Taking into account the fact that French is easier to learn than Hindi and Korean, it has higher chances to dominate the world.

Key Factors of a Language

Here is a list of key factors that influence lingo's growth trends and define future of language:

  • Annual growth rate of global human population is 1.1%, which is equal to 83 million people. Vast majority of dialects grow together with the population.
  • We are currently witnessing the largest wave of migration ever seen worldwide. The more people move to foreign countries, the more people become multilingual speakers.
  • Globalization and multiculturalism trends encourage people to learn foreign growing dialects fast and be more open to new cultural experiences.
  • Accessibility and affordability of learning materials also play an important role. Today, if you want to learn a fast growing foreign language, you don't have to pay for expensive offline classes. You can study online and use books, audio, and other resources available for free or almost free.  

Top 10 Growing Languages in the World

Finally, let's take a look at the list of the languages which are growing faster than others globally and locally.

English

Number of native English speakers: 378 million

Total number of English speakers: 1.348 billion

Key factors of growth: Globalization, the rise of eCommerce, and the fast development of digital technologies contribute to language growing process. No doubt, English is the fastest growing language – the total number of English speakers doubled within the last 100 years.

Reasons to learn English: Whether you are a software developer who wants to work for an international company, a student who wants to study abroad, or a business owner who wants to enter a global market, you should have a good command of English. Once you become fluent in English, it'll be easier for you to adjust to a multicultural environment and make a good impression on locals.

French

Number of native French speakers: 76 million

Total number of French speakers: 277 million

Key factors of growth:

French is one of the most important languages of the future. It's the main lingo in sub-Saharan African countries such as Congo, Guinea, Equatorial Guinea, Burundi, and Chad, which have recently been named the fastest growing countries. Besides, French is an official language of OECD and the United Nations.

Reasons to learn French:

Whether you want to build a business in Europe, study in the Province of Québec in Canada, or volunteer in Africa, you should learn French. Otherwise, you'll need to use certified French translation services or hire local translators to navigate the local culture and get assistance with paperwork.

Spanish

Number of native Spanish speakers: 463 million

Total number of Spanish speakers: 543 million

Key factors of growth:

As for today, Spanish is the fastest growing language in the US. According to statistics, number of Spanish speakers in the US jumped from 11 million to 41 million people within 35 years (between 1980 and 2015).

Reasons to learn Spanish:

Spanish is an official language not only in Spain but also in Mexico, Colombia, Argentina, Peru, Equatorial Guinea, Panama, Uruguay, Guatemala, Cuba, Bolivia, El Salvador, Nicaragua, Honduras, Venezuela, Chile, Ecuador, Paraguay, Costa Rica, Dominican Republic, and Puerto Rico. If you want to travel to one of these countries, you should visit the best Spanish translation websites and learn the basics of this beautiful lingo.

Mandarin Chinese

Number of native Chinese speakers: 920 million

Total number of Chinese speakers: 1.120 billion

Key factors of growth: 

China's population growth is not the only reason why Mandarin Chinese is considered the fastest growing language in the world. 

China's economy is growing faster than other economies. According to recent reports, China's economy grew a record 18.3% in the first quarter of 2021 compared to the same quarter of 2020. Since the world's largest eCommerce market with over 50% of global eCommerce transactions come from China, businesses people from all over the world face the necessity to learn Chinese.

Reasons to learn Mandarin Chinese:

According to Telegraph, less than 1% of Mainland Chinese speak English conversationally. So if you want to build personal or business relationships with Chinese people, you need to hire the best Chinese translator or start learning this complicated dialect.

Arabic

Number of native Arabic speakers: 274 million

Total number of Arabic speakers: 422 million

Key factors of growth: 

Arabic is one of the fastest growing languages in the US and the rest of the world, here is why. A few decades ago, the Middle East was a war zone. Today it's a growing marketplace that attracts business people from all over the world. Arabic-speaking countries produce 37% of the world's oil and 18% of its gas, while also advancing in other industries.

Besides, we shouldn't forget that continued immigration from the Middle East and the growing US Muslim population also contribute to Arabic growing process.  

Reasons to learn Arabic:

The Middle East Companies, including Arabic translation companies, offer great career opportunities for foreigners who have a good command of Arabic. So if you are passionate about fast growing foreign languages and want to work for an innovative company abroad, you should consider learning Arabic – the language of the future.

Hindi

Number of native Hindi speakers: 342 million

Total number of Hindi speakers: 637 million

Key factors of growth:

Between 1971 and 2011, Hindi native speakers increased from 37% to 44% of India. A decade later, this trend is continuing. Its fast growth is associated with significant migration from the north part of India to places like Bengaluru. Also, it's known that many parents in India choose to teach their children Hindi rather than other local dialects because it's understood by more than 50% of country's population.

Reasons to learn Hindi:

Hindi is the third most commonly fast growing and spoken lingo in the world and the second fastest growing language in US. If you want to learn more about the Hindu religion and better understand Indian culture, you need to learn Hindi. 

Urdu

Number of native Urdu speakers: 68.62 million

Total number of Urdu speakers: 230 million

Key factors of growth:

Urdu is official in Pakistan. And since population of Pakistan grows faster than population of India, Bangladesh, and other countries, Urdu is considered the fastest language in the world.

Reasons to learn Urdu:

Urdu is rather sophisticated. If you manage to learn it, you'll significantly improve your skills, and it'll be much easier for you to learn Arabic, Hindi, Persian, Punjabi, and others.

Portuguese

Number of native Portuguese speakers: 220 million 

Total number of Portuguese speakers: 270 million

Key factors of growth:

Portuguese is a national lingo not only in Portugal, but also in Brazil, Angola, Mozambique, and Guinea-Bissau. Population of Brazil, as well as country's economy, is rising and it fosters Portuguese growing speed.

Reasons to learn Portuguese:

Portuguese is not the old or newest language in the world. But it's spoken across continents and important for travel and business. If you don't have time for learning, you can always use affordable Portuguese translation services provided by native speakers.

Korean

Total number of Korean speakers: 77.2 million

Key factors of growth:

In recent years, many people worldwide have become obsessed with Korean culture. People from Europe, Canada, and the United States follow K-pop bands on social media, listen to their songs, and watch Korean dramas on Netflix. As of today, Korean is world's seventh-most popular dialect to study on Duolingo app.

Reasons to learn Korean:

Korean is one of the languages of the future because it grows and develops as fast as the Korean economy and culture do. If you admire Korean pop culture or want to do business with Korean companies, this language is the right for you to learn.  

Indonesian

Number of native Indonesian speakers: 43 million

Total number of Indonesian speakers: 228 million

Key factors of growth:

Over the past 50 years, number of Indonesian speakers increased from 127 million to 228 million. It has happened mainly because Indonesian was formalized as official lingo.

Reasons to learn Indonesian:

Indonesian is one of the easiest Asian languages to learn. So if you struggle to learn Chinese or Japanese, learn Indonesian first. It's one of the languages of the future world, so you'll benefit from gaining knowledge for sure.

Read also: Where can I find the best Vietnamese document translation services?

Why should we care about the pace at which languages are growing?

The world around us, as well as language landscape, keeps changing. If we want to succeed in business and life, we should watch trends and be ready to embrace changes brought by language of the future. For instance, if you run a business and want to expand it globally, you should clearly understand what languages your customers speak today and what they'll speak in 10 and 20 years. You should localize your website and social media content to win your target audience's attention and make sales in the short and long run.

In case if you want to travel around the globe or study abroad, you should learn languages of the future to smooth your travel and learning experience. If you don't know foreign lingo basics, you won't be able to explore local culture to the fullest. Also, you should understand that the growth of popular languages is associated with the decline of other languages. It may surprise you, but a third of the world's languages have fewer than 1,000 speakers left. Every two weeks, a lingo dies with its last speaker. Experts predict that up to 90% of these languages will disappear by 2100.