quinta-feira, abril 27, 2006

Notícia: MEPs to approve EU language passport

MEPs to approve EU language passport

in Euobserver.com

26.04.2006 - 18:05 CET By Helena Spongenberg

"EUOBSERVER / BRUSSELS - The European Parliament is on Thursday (27 April) set to approve European Commission proposals for an EU-wide indicator of language skillsThe commission last year proposed a Europe-wide indicator of language skills to make it easier for employees or teachers in one country to measure the language level of a worker or student from another country. If agreed by MEPs and member states, the new indicator will initially focus on the five most widely taught languages in the union: English, French, German, Spanish and Italian. More EU languages might be added at a later stage."The indicator is just a technical support to give you a certificate with your language skills," conservative Greek MEP Mr Mavrommatis said. "It's like a passport."Knowing languages "is a ticket for people who want to travel or find a job outside their own country," he added.Mr Mavrommatis has also written a separate non-legislative report on measures to promote multilingualism and language learning in the European Union.The study argues that knowing a number of foreign languages encourages people to be more open towards other cultures.European leaders decided in 2002 to promote the learning, from an early age, of at least two foreign languages besides the mother tongue. The push is an attempt to boost the European employment market by making it easier for people to move to another country for work.Each year the EU institutions spend over €800 million on translating documents into all the 20 official languages of the 25-member bloc. Next year that might increase to 23 official languages when Irish becomes an official EU language on 1 January 2007 and if Bulgaria and Romania join the club. "