English as a second language and its impact on the development of a country

In the world there is always a demand for people who can help bridge the communication gap between two or more cultures, whether for educational or commercial reasons. In educational terms, the opportunity and resources to learn a foreign language are much more readily available today than in the past.

And in business terms, industries like outsourcing and nearshoring have grown at an impressive rate for more than a generation. When it comes to the growth of some of the developing nations, the English language has a gigantic impact.

The outcome behind teaching English as a second language in low-income areas is often very positive. In 2011, the British Council identified four benefits of the English language, highlighting the fact that it improves employability, provides international mobility, and is a key to unlocking development opportunities.

The English language represents for countries such as Honduras, Guatemala, Costa Rica, or El Salvador, the possibility of continuing to take important steps in industries that have already energized their economies, such as BPO and ITO within the framework of the aforementioned nearshoring.

Both private companies and local governments have invested in a higher qualification of their workers in reference to the English language and other skills, as well as in adequate infrastructures that offer an attractive destination to companies in the business process outsourcing industry.


The many advantages of learning English that translate into development

The main advantage of learning a foreign language, in this case English, the language of global business, and of the world’s largest market, is that mastering it contributes to creating numerous job opportunities. Mastering this language gives the population an advantage over monolingual candidates in job interviews and other selection processes.

In an interconnected world, the demand for professionals who can communicate in a bilingual or multilingual way is growing. The English language also has the ability to increase international mobility, since people with English skills can travel to other countries more easily, through study scholarships in international schools, or job offers in other countries.

And perhaps the main impact on the social structures of a country is generated by the development opportunities that the language brings. English as a key to unlocking development opportunities means that much of the information, technology, and research published is in that language, therefore, acquiring English skills can provide access and understanding to much of that information.


What to do once the population masters English language?

To drastically change the social and economic configuration of a country, language is necessary, on the one hand, in this case as a specific competence, and above all, the appropriate infrastructures that offer an attractive destination to companies seeking qualified labor for their businesses. .

This need is supplied by companies such as GK, a leading company in textile manufacturing and the real estate industry, with presence in countries such as Honduras, Guatemala, Mexico, and the United States. With its Altia Smart City projects in the cities of San Pedro Sula and Tegucigalpa, the company has been a pioneer in attracting business from the ITO and BPO sector in Honduras, generating more than ten thousand jobs within its two projects in a few years.

According to different versions of the English Proficiency Index, young people of working age in Honduras, Guatemala, or Costa Rica have a proficiency in the English language as a second language that is on the rise. In this sense, attracting foreign investment from BPOs is an immense opportunity, and once the countries put in a qualified workforce, GK smart cities provide the right space for their professional growth.

There are an average of 103 BPO companies operating in Central America. In Guatemala, this industry contributes to the local economy about $ 160 million in jobs. In Honduras the sector has created more than 15,000 direct jobs. An initiative launched in 2017 in that country known as Plan Honduras 20/20, set itself the challenge of generating 51,000 more jobs in the coming years.

If more and more people can be trained in the English language, it is evident that its application to the work of these industries will provide a fantastic solution for regional economic growth in the years to come.


You may also want to read The human factor: GK commitment


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