300 million people in the world speak French, a nearly 10% increase since 2014.
235 million people speak French every day as their main language. (francophonie.org)
French is the 5th most-spoken language in the world, after Mandarin, English, Spanish, and Arabic.
French is the second most-learned language in the world, after English. (francophonie.org)
What’s the most populous Francophone city in the world? Paris? Algiers? Montréal? Guess again! It’s Kinshasa, the capital of the République démocratique du Congo, with a population of 17.7 million. The Democratic Republic of Congo is the second most populous Francophone country in the world (42.5 million), after France (66 million). (francophonie.org)
By 2050, French may be among the top three most widely-spoken languages in the world, thanks to rapid development and population growth in the Francophone African countries.
French and English are the only languages to be spoken on all five continents! (francophonie.org)
French is spoken in 106 countries and territories. (francophonie.org)
French is an official language in 32 states and governments, and 23 of these are in Africa.
French is crucial for international relations and diplomacy. French is the official language of the International Olympic Committee. French is an official language of most international organizations, including the United Nations, the European Union, UNESCO, NATO and the International Court of Justice (with English), and the International Red Cross (with English and Spanish).
At least 30% of all English words have a French origin, thanks in part to William the Conquerer, the duke of Normandy, who landed in England and became king in 1066.
French is the third most important language for international business, after English and Chinese.
France has won the most Nobel Prizes in Literature.
France is a world leader in aerospace, medical research, and genetics – think Pasteur Institute, fiber optics, microchip, and AIDS research.
Sources: (francophonie.org), University of Cambridge Press