MPs consider Lux language promotion centre

The “Zenter fir from Lëtzbuerger Sprooch” would “centralise the various tools and dictionaries for the Luxembourgish language Flickr user Thy/Creative Commons (2009)

The “Zenter fir from Lëtzbuerger Sprooch” would “centralise the various tools and dictionaries for the Luxembourgish language Flickr user Thy/Creative Commons (2009)

The draft law 7231 will be presented in the Luxembourg parliament on Wednesday afternoon by MP Claude Lamberty (DP).  

The “Zenter fir d'Lëtzbuerger Sprooch” would “centralise the various tools and dictionaries, such as lod.lu and spellchecker.lu, so that citizens have just one point of reference to learn the correct way to write Luxembourgish words,” the draft report says.

In addition, the draft calls for the creation of a Luxembourg language commissioner, who would supervise the Luxembourg language action plan over a period of 20 years. What is more, it calls for the creation of prizes to reward initiatives which promote the Luxembourg language, such as a youth literature prize.

Luxembourg already has a permanent council of the Luxembourgish language, the CPLL, and some MPs have previously questioned whether it wouldn’t be better to give more resources and skills to this body. Education minister Claude Meisch (DP) recently said the centre for Luxembourgish would be staffed by professionals while the CPLL was run by volunteers who “cannot ensure all the missions of the future centre”.

Luxembourgish in EU institutions

The Luxembourg language is going through a renaissance with more people than ever learning the language. According to a recent TNS Ilres survey, commissioned by the government, some 77% of respondents said they spoke a competent level of Luxembourgish.

Meanwhile, language school the INL is receiving record levels of interest in its Luxembourg language courses, with 3,485 learners in 2016, up from 1,417 in 2006.

In future, Luxembourg plans to begin negotiations with European institutions to have Luxembourgish recognised as the country’s language.

Responding to a recent parliamentary question from MP Octavie Modert (CSV), foreign affairs minister Jean Asselborn (LSAP) said formal negotiations with the institutions would not begin until after the government strategy for the promotion of the Luxembourg language had been put in place.