Norway businesses prefer German / News / The Foreigner

Norway businesses prefer German. Norwegian jobseekers are encouraged to learn German as a second foreign language instead of Spanish, a new Confederation of Norwegian Enterprise (NHO) study shows. Germany is one of Norway's biggest trade partner, but the language remains unpopular with students, however. Werner Fuchs, general manager of TINEX – that represents several German companies within the defense, security, and communications technology sectors – says they have had no luck getting applicants with German skills for advertised jobs when asking for these.  

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Norway businesses prefer German

Published on Thursday, 10th April, 2014 at 20:59 under the news category, by Emma Åsberg.
Last Updated on 12th April 2014 at 00:11.

Norwegian jobseekers are encouraged to learn German as a second foreign language instead of Spanish, a new Confederation of Norwegian Enterprise (NHO) study shows.

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Photo: Jordan Fischer/Wikimedia Commons


Germany is one of Norway's biggest trade partner, but the language remains unpopular with students, however.

Werner Fuchs, general manager of TINEX – that represents several German companies within the defense, security, and communications technology sectors – says they have had no luck getting applicants with German skills for advertised jobs when asking for these.  

“We didn’t find anyone who knew German when seeking a new sales director. So we chose one with good English skills instead,” he told Aftenposten.

According to him, the number of Norwegians with German skills has been decreasing in the over 20 years that he has run the company.

“I think this is due to travel habits and difficult grammar, and most things can be done in English. Nevertheless, speaking German when we work with German suppliers would clearly have been an advantage,” he said.

Employers’ organization NHO’s report reveals some three times as many member companies reported a need for employees with a knowledge of German in comparison to Spanish.

Spanish ranks fifth in languages needed by businesses. The first four places are occupied by English (42 per cent), German (14 per cent), Polish (5.5 per cent), and French (4 per cent).

Four out of 10 businesses in the tourism sector are also in need of employees who know German.

Across the border in Sweden, moves have been made to integrate Mandarin to be part of students’ more traditional language choices of Spanish, German, and French, meanwhile.

The Confederation of Swedish Enterprise calls for more students to learn German as it is the country's biggest trade partner.

And Swedish Minister of Education Jan Björklund has expressed plans to educate more people in Mandarin as a way of getting ahead of other countries.

“China is likely to be the world's largest economy within a few years, and having more people who speak the language could be a competitive advantage for us,” he said.




Published on Thursday, 10th April, 2014 at 20:59 under the news category, by Emma Åsberg.
Last updated on 12th April 2014 at 00:11.

This post has the following tags: norwaywork, language.





  
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