Brazilians, over five million of them, are learning Spanish, according to the latest edition from Spain’s Cervantes Institute, “2009 Memory: Spanish language in the world”.
This compares favorably with the one million registered in 2006, and covers the different levels of education in Brazil from primary school to university.
According to Spanish news agency reports this is one of the most relevant data from the Cervantes Institute 2009 Memory and which Director Carmen Caffarel will make official next Wednesday in Madrid.
Since the promulgation of a 2005 education bill, in Brazil all secondary schools must have Spanish language as an option beginning this year.
Last August Brazil and Spain signed a collaboration agreement with the purpose that 41 million Brazilians aged 7 to 17, in the next few years, can learn to read and express themselves in Spanish.
The agreement between the Cervantes Institute and the Brazilian Education ministry contemplates support for the formation and training of 26.000 Spanish language teachers (up from 12.000 in 2009) to cope with the growing demand triggered by the 2005 bill.
The Cervantes Institute has nine main offices in Brazil, the country with the highest number in the world and which most attracts the interest of the institution.
The report also refers to the advance of Spanish teaching in Russia and the Sub-Sahara region, two geographical regions of interest for Spain.
The 300-page document includes other issues related to the Spanish language and Hispanic culture, as well as the 18th anniversary of the Cervantes Institute which was celebrated in 2009.
The Institute is also preparing to open office in Gibraltar, as part of a trilateral understanding between Gibraltar, UK and Spain in spite of the sovereignty dispute.