Spanish is increasingly spoken in countries like the United States and Equatorial Guinea, but less and less in Morocco and the Philippines.
“We are not aware of the power that Spanish has in the world,” said David Fernandez, full professor in the Department of Modern Philology at the University of Alcalá in Madrid and author of “Las afueras del español” (Editorial Peter Lang), in an interview with EFE, stating that the United States could become by 2060 the country in the world with the most Spanish speakers, estimated at around 128 million.
“Hispanic Americans” represent a fairly strong community in the United States, explains the expert, who adds that Spanish is widely spoken in “States like Texas and Florida”. The challenge remains that the grandchildren of the latter continue to speak this language and consider themselves Hispanic. Hence the need to teach Spanish to gain new speakers.
Most of those who study another language in the United States, from elementary school to university, opt for Spanish, which already shows the importance of the language in the United States, but also in Equatorial Guinea , a former Spanish colony and the only country in Africa where Spanish is the official language. On the other hand, Spanish is “in decline” in Morocco, reveals Fernandez, indicating that only 1% of the population of the kingdom speaks this language.
According to data from the Cervantes Institute, Spanish or Castilian is the official language of about twenty countries in Latin America, Spain and Equatorial Guinea. It is spoken by some 591 million people, or 7.5% of the world’s population.