8 facts you should know about the Portuguese language.
- Portuguese is the official language of 8 countries (Portugal, Brazil, Angola, Cape Verde, East Timor, Guine-Bissau, Mozambique and São Tomé e Príncipe).
- Portuguese is widely spoken in 4 continents: in Europe (Portugal and Portuguese islands – Madeiras and Azores), in South America (Brazil), Africa (Angola, Moçambique, Guiné-Bissau, São Tomé e Príncipe), and in Asia (East Timor, Macau, Goa).
- Over 230 million people speak Portuguese (it is the third most spoken European language (after English and Spanish) and the sixth most widely spoken language in the world).
- Portuguese is the language of 25 percent of the population of the Southern Hemisphere. It is spoken by nearly 40 percent of the population in countries bordering the southern Atlantic rim region.
- There is a large community of Portuguese and Brazilian immigrants in the United States. The 2000 Census estimated that there are ca. 212,000 Brazilian living in the USA, while unofficial estimates put the number between 800,000 and 1,2 million.
- Portuguese was declared one of the 6 critical languages by the National Defense Education Act of 1958.
- Brazil is the 7th largest economy in the world, which makes Portuguese extremely relevant in a global economy.
- Portuguese is also a working and/or official language in some of the most important international organizations, such as the IMF (International Monetary Fund), the African Union, the Community of Portuguese Language Countries, the EU (European Union), Mercosul (The Common Market of the South -- Argentina, Brazil, Paraguay and Uruguay), the OAS (Organization of American States), the Organization of Ibero-American States, and the Union of South American Nations.