Chinese Language Learning Gaining Momentum in Africa, Says UNECA Director  – ENA English

Addis Ababa April 18/2024 (ENA) There is a growing interest and promising future for learning the Chinese language in Africa, according to UNECA Africa Center for Statistics Director Oliver Chinganya.

Addressing the celebration of the Chinese Language Day at the UNECA (United Nations Economic for Africa) in Addis Ababa today, the director noted that among the numerous reasons why people are increasingly interested in learning Chinese is its being one of the six official working languages of the United Nations.

The growing ease of travel to China, expansion of Confucius Institutes in the continent, and the vast economic opportunities that come with Chinese language proficiency are the other reasons, Chinganya added. 


According to him, there were 62 Confucius institutes in 45 African countries in 2021.

The number of students enrolled in the Chinese language programs also surpassed the number of students in many European countries.

The director claimed that the number of people learning Chinese worldwide is nearing 40 million, and is projected to reach 100 million by 2026.

Chinganya finally called for a stronger partnership between UNECA and China’s Mission to the African Union, along with other multilateral partners.


Head of China’s Mission to the African Union, Hu Changchun, echoed the importance of learning Chinese to understand China. 

Emphasizing the worldwide surge in demand for Chinese language proficiency, he reaffirmed his government’s commitment to addressing global needs such as peace, development, and cooperation.



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