Friday

19th Jul 2019

Less French talk in the enlarged EU

For many years French was the dominating language in the corridors of the EU.

No British diplomat was appointed for a job in Brussels without French language skills, due to an informal agreement between the French president Georges Pompidou and the British Prime Minister Edward Heath when the UK entered the EU in 1973.

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However, with the accession of Sweden, Austria and Finland in 1995, the first group of non-French speaking diplomats arrived in Brussels. This trend is likely to continue with enlargement, reports French daily Le Monde.

English was chosen by 69 percent of the candidates from the new member states in the Concours, the tests in which EU officials are recruited. Meanwhile, 18 percent chose German and only 13 percent selected French.

The French paper also points out that financial studies from the Commission are only published in English, despite the fact that the UK is not even a member of the euro-zone.

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Opinion

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