French to replace English as working language of the EU

al sahawat times macron france

EU to replace English with French as official working languge

European Union | Linguistics | French

The European Union is finalising its plan to replace English with French as the EU’s official working language now that the UK has left the EU.

The plan coincides with France’s presidential term in the rotating Coucil of the European Union. As of 2022 all meetings, documents and formal working language but be “French First”

French is one of the most widely spoken language in the world and out of the EU member states’ official languages is second globally only to Spanish.

The most wildly spoken languages in the world are: Spanish, Mandarin, Hindi, English, Arabic. Bengali, French, Russian, Portuguese, Japanese, Indonesian, German, Urdu, Swahili, although the exact number and order varies depending on the metrics used (example, countries where the language is the main official language, number of native mother-tongue speakers or number of people who speak the language to a conversational level.

A senior French diplomat told European news outlet ‘Politico’: “Even if we admit that English is a working language and it is commonly practiced, the basis to express oneself in French remains fully in place in the EU institutions. We must enrich it, and make it live again so that the French language truly regains ground, and above that, the taste and pride of multilingualism.”

If the plans go ahead meetings will be conducted in French rather than English during the six-month presidency, the initiative will be reviewed by the next incumbent president. If the initiative proves popular it is expected that French will then remain as the official working language of the EU.

“We will always ask the Commission to send us in French, the letters it wishes to address to the French authorities, and if they fail to do so, we will wait for the French version before sending it.” the unnamed diplomat said.

It is the first French presidency of the council since Nicolas Sarkozy was president in 2008. According to statistics issued by the Commission, at least 80% of Commission officials speak French as a first, second or third language.

France has offered to fund free French language classes for diplomats.

In the UK, French has been a compulsory second language, taught in schools until the age of 15/16 for many decades.

© 2021 Al-Sahawat Times, Printed and Distributed by IPMG, an Al-Said Group entity. 

Since you’re here …

… we have a small favour to ask. More people are reading Al-Sahawat Times than ever but advertising revenues across the global media industry are falling fast. And unlike many news organisations, we haven’t put up a total paywall. We want to keep our journalism as open as we can. So you can see why we need to ask for your help. Al-Sahawat Times’ independent, investigative journalism takes a lot of time, money and hard work to produce. But we do it because we believe truly ethical media and an unbias perspective really matters.

“I appreciate there not being a paywall: it is more democratic for the media to be available for all and not a commodity to be purchased by a few. I’m happy to make a contribution so others with less means still have access to information.”

If everyone who reads our reporting, who likes it, helps fund it, the future of ethical media and the futures of our staff and their families would be much more secure. For as little as £1, you can support Al-Sahawat Times and it only takes a minute. Thank you.

This story is available on:


Talk to a journalist



Follow Al-Sahawat Times

⬆️ Follow on Instagram

⬆️ Follow on Twitter

⬆️ Follow on LinkedIn

⬆️ Follow on Facebook

⬆️ Follow on YouTube

Read it on APPLE NEWS

Read it on FLIPBOARD

About the Author