Woman practicing writing Chinese characters
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UK warned over shortage of foreign language speakers

There is an "alarming" shortage of British people who can speak the ten most important languages, the British Council has warned.

The list includes traditionally-taught languages such as French and Spanish, but also lists Russian, Arabic and Japanese.

The Department for Education has said it will introduce reforms next year to ensure hundreds of thousands more young people study languages.

But why are British students so behind with foreign language skills? BBC Radio 5 live's Breakfast reporter Rowan Bridge visited language teachers and students at Manchester College to find out.

  • 20 Nov 2013
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