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Conversis CEO warns House of Lords of consequences of UK language skills deficiency

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© Business Wire 2014
2014-02-17 14:06:01 -

Today at the House of Lords, Gary Muddyman, CEO of Oxford-based translation agency Conversis, delivered a hard-hitting message: he warned that the deepening language skills shortage is affecting UK competitiveness abroad. He argued that in order for UK businesses to continue to trade successfully in coming years, the nation’s attitude to languages must change.

“No longer should languages be dismissed as ‘soft skills’. As business becomes increasingly borderless, the language skills and cultural competencies of our business leaders will be critical to our economic health.”

Muddyman spoke about a new initiative from GALA supported by ManpowerGroup. Dubbed the Global Talent Program (GTP), the initiative seeks to highlight multilingual and multicultural competencies as core talents for today’s global workforce. GTP is a

broad, collaborative effort to build a consensus-driven system for understanding and evaluating global talent.

Hans Fenstermacher, CEO of GALA added, “Monolingual cultures will increasingly lose out in the globalized economy. That’s why GALA’s GTP seeks to elevate languages in the UK, US and beyond to the same level as scientific and technological capabilities. Without language, the global economy simply can’t function.”

The GTP was well received at the House of Lords. Baroness Coussins, chair of the All-party Parliamentary Group on Modern Languages, urged action: “We have robust evidence in the UK showing that our national shortage of language skills amongst school-leavers and graduates is detrimental to our economic growth, to employability, to intercultural understanding and to our influence internationally. I hope that the GTP will be able to reach out to young people, parents, teachers and businesses in the UK to help motivate and inspire them to take language skills seriously, whatever their discipline or sector.”

For a complete transcript of Muddyman’s remarks, visit : .. .

About Conversis

Primarily a marketing communications translation and localisation agency, Conversis also work with healthcare, technology and energy sector clients. Conversis work with professional translators in more than 70 countries and 120 languages. More information: : .. .

About GALA

The Globalization and Localization Association (GALA) is the worldwide voice for the language industry and a resource for the language business. The association supports its members and the language industry by creating communities, championing standards, sharing knowledge, and advancing technology. More information: : .. .


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