Importance of English in International Business and Trade

International Business

Importance of English in International Business and Trade


When conducting international businesses, language plays a vital role in setting the ideal platform for interaction. Needless to say, English is a global language (or Lingua Franca) and can be classified as an international medium for communication.

Did you know?

‘Over a billion individuals speak English as their first or second language. Also, English is spoken as a third or fourth language by hundreds of millions of people worldwide.’

Being an official language in over 70 countries, the English language is known to provide an opportunity to different countries who wish to engage in international trade and conduct business activities overseas.

This article will explore the English language’s true potential and its contribution, aiding to smoother business transactions. Most students that take English as a secondary language desire to diversify their career options in life.

Influence of English Language in International Business

Trading is of such a nature that it requires at least two people to communicate efficiently to conduct a business transaction. Therefore, using a single language to communicate is essential to avoid confusion, misunderstanding, or fraud. Even if two people are not present in the same physical space, they will maintain a virtual contact for which the use of English language is necessary, to ensure a better flow of ideas and strategies that helps a business operate to its core.

Language is critical as it aids a company keep its operations steady in the global economy by overcoming communication barriers. Besides, individuals come to work in foreign companies from diverse cultural backgrounds and nationalities. For such individuals to communicate internally and externally, it is essential to set a unifying linguistic understanding.

With a mutually understood English language, traders can save much time while sending and receiving messages. They take less time absorbing the details and almost instantly have a reply for the sender if required. As a result, there are fewer chances for mistakes and errors.

English in International

Significance of English Language in Business

  • Saves Costs

Besides making interactions more difficult, not knowing English can lead to hiring a translator, which is an additional cost to your business. Communicating through a third person makes the process longer. It may sometimes lead to misinterpretations or miscoordination with a client.

  • Offers Growth to Professionals

Furthermore, for an individual wishing to step in the corporate world, reading and writing accurate English language is exceptionally important. This is because all their applications, emails, and correspondence are in the English language. One needs to be prepared for it if they wish to succeed in today’s highly competitive job market, irrespective of their industry.


Language Barrier in International Business

  • Fewer Business Opportunities

When you limit yourself to the local language, you also lower your chance to expand your business globally to get international clients as you cannot cater to the international market.

  • Inefficient Employee Management

If there are internal language barriers in any organisation, it would lead to ineffective communication and make your employee management a long and frustrating job. Misinterpretation of orders can lead to wrong decision making/actions, causing a business to incur unnecessary costs.

  • Greater Risks

Employees who do not know English would be unable to perform as a team. Therefore, the chances of a business failing are greater. Since you may not cater to the global market, business sustainability through the local market is pretty slim.

  • Language Training Costs

Suppose a business decides to have all their employees trained for English. It may cost high to qualify them as the business entity would have to hire a professional teacher or buy online courses offered on the internet.

In Closing

After discussing the above points, it must be clear to the reader that English plays a crucial part in international business and trade even though many recent debates have given a particular language such priority. However, when it comes to business and profit-making, one has to admit that English is almost indispensable in conducting international trade and businesses successfully.




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