By Chris Smit
The Dutch are internationally known for the fact that their English is of a very high standard.
Why is that?
Well, there are a couple of reasons.
On a technical level, the Dutch language has its roots in the Indo-European languages (like German and English itself). For that reason, grammar structures (and often words) are very comparable in the two languages (e.g. “geef mij dat” becomes “give me that”). Compare this to Latin languages (Spanish, Italian, and French), that have a totally different structure (and grammar structures like the ’subjunctive’ that doesn’t exist in Dutch and English) – and you can appreciate the difference.
Another reason for the high level of English spoken by the Dutch is that we’ve always been a sea-going nation; trade has been at the center of Dutch society for hundreds of years. This entrepreneurial and global mindset has led to a lot of international business where you need a good level of English to be able to do your trade.
For more reasons, be sure to read Chris Smit’s article!