Ukraine raises the status of the English language


The Ukrainian parliament has passed a new law to strengthen the status of the English language in the Eastern European country.

A good command of English will be a prerequisite for many Ukrainian civil servants in the future, the parliament in Kiev decided on Tuesday.

A higher level of English is intended to make the country more attractive to tourists and internationally competitive. The upgrade of English in Ukraine is “a necessity and a strategic step towards full membership of the (Ukrainian) state in the European Union,” it said in justifying the law.

For example, border and customs officers, prosecutors and police officers in senior positions must be able to communicate in English. Emergency calls and the use of medical services must be possible in English.

When dealing with the authorities, translations of foreign documents such as passports from English into Ukrainian, which were common until now, will become redundant.

Museums must also make their exhibitions accessible in English. Websites of state institutions and universities must offer up-to-date English versions.

To raise the level of English among Ukrainians, English classes have already been planned in preschool centers.

The screening of films in the original English language with subtitles is also promoted.

Ukrainian is the only official language in Ukraine. Russian, widely spoken in Soviet times, has been increasingly banned from public life by law for years. The language has also lost popularity due to the Russian invasion.

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