In 2015, English is widely accepted as the primary international language, and it is increasingly defined as a basic skill required of every student in every education system.
But not in every country : Thailand ranks 62 out of 70 countries in a global ranking of English skills by EF Education First.
The fith edition of the report also shows a worrying trend for Thailand : the country showed very little improvement and desperately sticks to the bottom of the charts.
This fifth edition of the EF English Proficiency Index (EF EPI) ranks 70 countries and territories based on test data from more than 910,000 adults who took the online English tests in 2014. EF English Proficiency Index (EF EPI), is the world’s largest ranking of countries by English skills.
The report identifies global and regional English-language learning trends and analyses the relationship between countries’ English proficiency and their economic competitiveness.
Thailand scored 45.35 out of 100, while Sweden (70.94) was on top, following by the Netherlands (70.58) and Denmark (70.05).
In Asian countries, Singapore ranked 1st with a score of 61.08, followed by Malaysia (60.30), and India, South Korea and Vietnam at 6th (53.81).
In Asia, only Mongolia and Cambodia have a lower score than Thailand. Two Asean countries (Singapore and Malaysia) are leading the pack in Asia, followed by Vietnam and Indonesia at 8th (52.91).
- Asia has a high level of English skill diversity, with three countries in the High Proficiency band as well as several in the lowest proficiency band. Asia is by far the most populous region in the index, so this diversity is not unexpected.
- Worldwide, English proficiency levels are highest among young adults aged 18-20. However, on a global level, the difference in English ability between age cohorts is extremely small for adults under 30. On a national level, the story is quite different, with some countries showing stark generational differences and others almost none.
- English is likewise critical to science and engineering. Countries with higher English proficiency have more researchers and technicians per capita, as well as larger expenditures for research and development. The ability to learn from the research of others, participate in international conferences, publish in leading journals, and collaborate with multinational research teams is dependent upon excellent English.
- The interaction between English proficiency and Gross National Income per capita seems to be a virtuous cycle – improving English skills drives up salaries, which in turn encourages governments and individuals to invest more in English training. In many countries, higher English proficiency corresponds to fewer young people who are unemployed or not in training.
Thai Labor force needs further improvement to prepare for AEC
It has been suggested that the quality of Thai skilled labor in all fields should be further developed in order to prepare for the free flow of ASEAN professionals after the formal establishment of the ASEAN Economic Community (AEC) by the end of 2015.
A market home to 600 million
This new market entity is home to more than 600 million people, almost double the population of the United States. The combined economy will be the seventh largest in the world, comparable to that of Britain or Brazil. Language skills will matter in the new single market, especially in English.
Open economic integration also comes with more competition. With the upcoming AEC economic integration, bilingual and multilingual individuals will be very advantageous at finding job positions and getting promotions.
Thailand’s four challenges : Debt, inequality, plastics and climate change
Thais tended to get into debt faster, for longer and for higher amounts. Indebtedness starts as soon as they begin to work at age 25 and can increase until 56 years old.
Bank of Thailand Governor Veerathai Santiprabhob, in his speech entitled “Formulating for the Future of Corporate Governance”, delivered at the Finance and Beyond National Director Conference 2019 in Bangkok (July 24th), said Thailand faces four challenges that require good governance in businesses to address.(more…)
Exports contracted by -2.1%YOY in June, or -8.7% without Gold
With the exception of military arms and weapons reshipment to the USA in February, Thai exports value has shrunk continuously for the past 8 months, and the first half of 2019 showing a decline of -4.4%YOY.
Thai exports could drop 0.6% in 2019
The University of the Thai Chamber of Commerce predicts that Thai exports in 2019 will drop 0.6% year on year, the first contraction in four years.
Dr. Aat Pisanwanich, Director of Center for International Trade Studies (CITS) of UTCC, said that total Thai exports this year are expected to reach USD251.338 billion, 0.64% less than last year and the first contraction in four years.(more…)
Thailand Ecommerce Market: Shooting For Success
At present, the Thai ecommerce market is valued at USD 3.5 billion. According to a Google Temasek study, Thailand’s e-commerce...
Aspire Set to Become First SME Neobank in Southeast Asia with US$32.5 Million Raise
The recent financing has been led by Mass-Mutual Ventures Southeast Asia with participation from Silicon Valley’s Arc Labs and existing...
How is Thailand Bringing Technology to the Table?
In Asia, a country like Thailand has taken the initiative to implement agricultural biotechnology in its industry. The country has...