Chinese languages, such as Mandarin and Cantonese, have long had a reputation for being the next big thing in the business world. But where has this reputation come from? It’s well known that China is an economic superpower, but there are others. The United States, Japan and Germany all rank alongside China in the top 5 on the GDP Ranking. And after all, modern China is only 20 years old. How can a language that belongs to a country whose economic growth is so new be poised to take over the business world?
Though there are several different Chinese languages, such as Mandarin and Cantonese, the differences in these languages are such that many people refer to them as dialects rather than separate languages. To celebrate Chinese Language Day, we look at these languages as a whole and give you three reasons why the world thinks Chinese may be poised to take over the world of business.
It’s the most spoken widely native language in the world
According to the Encyclopedia Britannica, “More people speak a variety of Chinese as a native language than any other language in the world.” This might be slightly owing to the fact that China is one of the most densely populated countries in the world, with over one and a quarter billion people.
A vast language pool makes for a vast market, complete with a high number of potential consumers and investors to match. So if businesses are thinking of going big, rather than going home, they might consider trying China on for size.
It belongs to the second largest economy in the world
Following on from the sheer size of China’s population, they also happen to be an economic superpower. China is does a lot of trade with another of the world’s biggest economic strongholds – the USA, further increasing their economy’s relationship with business leaders in the west. China’s gigantic economy makes them a very big international player, boosting the need for Chinese language skills in business, from negotiations to marketing campaigns.
Regardless of China’s recent economic issues, such as their very own so-called ‘Black Monday’ last year, the country’s economic standing is still strong on the stage of global business, and it looks like it’s going to stay that way for plenty of years to come.
English is being taught alongside it
English is reportedly being “aggressively taught in China so that the country can engage with the outside world in both business and scholarship.” Some might reach the misguided conclusion that this would eliminate much of the world’s need to learn Chinese.
However it is clear that China is preparing on all fronts to do big, global business. This adds another string to China’s already impressive business bow and gives them a bilingual advantage at home and away. Countries that do not follow suit by engaging with Chinese languages are at risk of falling behind. The global economy is very much a multilinguistic one, and China is possibly getting ahead of the curve.