According to the English Proficiency Index produced by Education First, Guatemala and Panama have improved, moving from the "very low" group to the "low" group, while Costa Rica and El Salvador remain stagnant at that level.
The index, which the global English teaching business Education First publishes annually, defines three levels of proficiency in 70 countries worldwide. In the world rankings, Costa Rica, Guatemala, Panama and El Salvador were located in the 43rd, 46th, 48th and 61st positions, respectively.
On February 13, representatives from the education and business sector will meet to discuss challenges and achievements in teaching English.
From a press release issued by the Chamber of Commerce, Industries and Agriculture of Panama:
For the first time, representatives from the Panamanian education and business sectors will gather together to discuss challenges and achievements in the field of teaching English at the First National Bilingualism Forum entitled "Building Competitiveness".
A poor level of English is still one of Latin America's most significant competitive weaknesses, especially in the countries of Central America.
Of the 60 countries evaluated in the English Proficiency Index developed by EF Educatio First (EF EPI), Costa Rica ranks in 37th place, Guatemala at number 52, followed by El Salvador at 53 and Panama at 56.
It is increasingly common for companies to look for accountants, managers, engineers, architects and technicians who are bilingual.
Although more and more companies are looking for bilingual staff, language schools believe that the demand for courses is still too low to meet the needs of entrepreneurs and investment entering the country.
Even so , " Nicaraguans have recently realized the importance of English, it is the language of business worldwide, it is the language of the internet, documents , and they now feel that it is becoming a priority," said Franklin Tellez, academic director of the Nicaraguan American Cultural Center (CCNN) .
The Agency for Promotion of Exports and Investments is inviting bids for a classroom training program in English in the Metropolitan Area of San Salvador for at least 650 people.
The Program for Training of Human Resources in English aims to:
Facilitate the establishment of new businesses or the expansion of existing ones by implementing a program of English languagetraining to complement and enhance the skills of the candidates thus satisfying the demand of enterprises.
Part of one of the business units of Hewlett-Packard in Costa Rica will move to India, and attempts are being made to relocate the 400 workers who are occupationally affected.
Alluding to a restructuring of a business unit dedicated to customer service calls in English, Maria Luisa Gonzalez, human resources manager of HP confirmed to Nacion.com that "The company ... will move part of its 20 business units to other nations, mainly India ".
A bill entitled "English for All" aims to promote English language learning, so the country may take advantage of many job and development opportunities that it is currently missing out on.
The project "English for All Act" is among a package of economic recovery bills being promoted by the economy committee of Parliament, said the representative Pedro Muadi Menendez, from the ruling Partido Patriota to Lahora.com.gt.
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