As indicated from the World Language Map, Chinese is spoken by the most people in the world, but with the rapid economic development in recent years, Chinese people are enthusiastic about learning foreign languages. Here listed are the top foreign languages learnt in China.
Of course, it is English! English learning is in full swing with every school opening English classes from Monday to Friday and English training centers in all big cities available for learners at all standards from beginners to advanced levels. English learning funding is a big part of the education expenditure for many families and even so, many people are still struggling to try and speak fluent English.
2. Japanese and Korean
There are many reasons why Japanese and Korean are learnt by Chinese people. The main reason is that Japanese and Korean languages are regarded as useful languages in business, especially since many Japanese and Korean enterprises are flooding the Chinese market at the moment. Second is that Japanese and Korean are similar to Chinese. It is said that 2000 Chinese characters are commonly used in Japanese and half of all Korean pronunciations are analogous to their Chinese counterparts. The third reason is due to the geographical location of these two countries. Therefore their cultures are warmly welcomed in China.
3. French and German
Just as France is the most romantic country in the world, French is considered as the most melodious language by many Chinese people. The major French learners are college students and white-collar workers due to their interest in the diversified French culture or their working or overseas study demands.
Unlike French, many Chinese people communicate with their German colleagues in English but they learn German out of the need for job promotion as it may improve their chances once they start talking in the difficult German language. Also many young people learn German because they want to pursue a degree or study further in Germany.
Although Spanish and Portuguese are widely spoken in many parts of the world, only a few people in China try to learn them. But with flourished commerce and business communication between China and South America, the two languages are sure to be learnt by more and more people.