Foreign ministers from the Community of Portuguese Language Countries (CPLP) (Comunidade de Países de Língua Portuguesa) called Friday for a more “persistent political lobbying” to introduce Portuguese as a “document language” in the United Nations.
If introduced, the measure will require all UN General Assembly, Security Council, UNESCO and other UN Agencies’ documents to be published in Portuguese.
The foreign ministers were representing the eight-nation Portuguese official language community at the 16th CPLP General Meeting, held July 18-22, in Luanda, Angola.
Under the topic “The role of the CPLP in the United Nations,” the eight CPLP countries agreed to take the necessary steps to make their shared Portuguese language an official language at the United Nations and its agencies.
The Lisbon-headquartered CPLP confederation is comprised by Portugal and her former colonies of Angola, Brazil, Cape Verde, Guinea Bissau, Mozambique, Sao Tome and Príncipe and East Timor.
Portuguese is the third most widely spoken European language, after English and Spanish, with some 240 million users worldwide. More people speak Portuguese as their native language than French, German, Italian or Japanese.
Portuguese is now recognized as a working language by European Union, the Mercosul, the African Union, the Organization of Ibero-American States, and the Organization of American States, among other world organizations.
Despite its status as a global language, Portuguese is not recognized as an official language of the United Nations.
The Community of Portuguese Language Countries (CPLP) is a multilateral forum, created in 1996, to foster mutual friendship and cooperation among its members with the objective of disseminating the Portuguese language and promoting mutual cooperation in all matters, including education, health, science and technology, defense, agriculture, public administration, communication, justice, public security, culture, sports, and social communication.