‘Spanish, a Global Language’: New Marca España strategy to promote the Spanish language
The President of the Government Spain, Mariano Rajoy, introduced ‘Spanish, a Global Language’ at the Reina Sofía Museum – a government strategy to turn the Spanish language into an opportunity tool for the Spanish-speaking community on the basis of value and use.
The High Commissioner for Marca España will play a key role in the implementation of this strategy. He will become High Commissioner for Marca España and the Promotion of the Spanish Language, and he will be in charge of designing a global strategy for Spanish as a vessel of knowledge.
In addition, an Advisory Board will be set up to plan, develop, coordinate and manage the activities of the Central Government and its agencies, as well as those of other public administrations and private organisations, in the area of language promotion.
Chaired by the High Commissioner, the Advisory Board will be made of the Secretary of State for International Cooperation and for Latin America and the Caribbean; four renowned experts appointed by the Minister of Education, Culture and Sport; the Director of Instituto Cervantes; the Chairman of the Royal Spanish Language Academy; a representative of the Spanish Language Academy Association (ASALE); a representative of ICEX España Exportación e Inversiones; a representative of the Spanish National Research Council (CSIC); and a director-general-level representative of the Ministries of the Presidency and Territorial Administrations, of Education, Culture and Sport, of Foreign Affairs and Cooperation, and of Energy, Tourism and the Digital Agenda.
Important package of measures
The first measures in the new language policy include the development of an Erasmus and an internship programme for Latin American students. Likewise, a new type of ambassador will be established: the ‘Ambassadors of Spanish as a Global Language’, that is, individuals who lend their voices to the renewed language promotion efforts.
In addition, a digital content platform will be designed to make available works and documents from a variety of fields – literature, film, music, art, science and technology – in Spanish and in Portuguese. And a boost will be given to the production of Information Society contents and the development of new applications, technologies and digital services in Spanish.
Participation of the civil society and the private sector will be much welcomed. To encourage it, there will be tax incentives (up to 90% tax relief) for activities promoting the initiative, which has been designated as an ‘Event of Extraordinary Public Interest’.
Also, a Businesses for the Spanish Language Plan will be designed along the lines of the Olympic Sports Association (ADO) Programme, inviting Spanish and Latin American companies and multinational corporations to become language sponsors.
With over 570 million speakers, the Spanish language is a global asset producing wealth and building culture, brand and identity. Still, it has a huge potential for expansion and growth in the digital era. It is expected to have more than 700 million speakers in 30 years’ time.