The European Union, Money, and Language

When the European was first formed in fifties there were only six countries on its rosters. Now it’s 2017 and there are 27 members to the international organization. Because all these countries have been included over the years the EU has added more languages to its official roster; the count is now at 24. This representation supports inclusions of different cultures within the Union, but at the cost of over 1 billion euros a year for translations and interpretations. Still, the European Union’s budget in 2015 was 145 billion dollars, making the amount spent for language representation less than one percent.

Currently the Union is questioning the status of two languages. One is the English since the United Kingdom recently voted to leave the EU. Another is Turkish, not because Turkey is in the EU (it’s not!), but because of Cyprus. Finally, Luxembourgish is the “only national language of a member state that the union has not made official.” This is tied to Luxembourg also having French and German as official languages, plus all their laws are written in French and so the EU is “looking for a way to enhance the language’s status that would not entail a lot of translation and interpretation expense,” (New York Times).

Sources:

New York Times & Europa

 

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