National ambition "is clear" for French teaching abroad
Teaching of French abroad – Reply given by M. Jean-Baptiste Lemoyne, Minister of State attached to the Minister for Europe and Foreign Affairs, to a question in the National Assembly (excerpts)
Paris, 24 May 2018
You mention one of the issues linked to soft power, and as you know, be it French teaching abroad or Alliances françaises, strong determination has been expressed.
The French President made very clear commitments in his speech to the French community in Tunis in February. He specified that the budget of the AEFE [Agency for French Education Abroad] would be totally ring-fenced in 2018 and 2019, enabling us to hold a discussion with you, members of parliament representing French nationals abroad, with staff and parents, to be even more ambitious for the network. Indeed, the President’s wish is for us to double the number of pupils in French or French-language programmes by 2030. In fact, we currently have 350,000 pupils, so you can see this ambition is clear.
Regarding the Alliances françaises, like you I take my hat off to those 800 Alliances carrying out their activities in 132 countries, enabling French to be learnt and France to increase its global reach through culture and innovation. From this point of view, our funding is up to the mark. In 2018, €35 million is being devoted to Alliances françaises, which is exactly in line with what was previously provided.
Moreover, as you know, we’re currently untangling any complex relationships that may exist between the governance structure, the Fondation Alliances françaises, and the Alliances françaises themselves. I think that, thanks to the report by Pierre Vimont, a great servant of the state, we’ll be able to make progress in ensuring that the Alliances françaises are better represented in the governance structure and also get closer to the Institut français, in a format currently being drawn up.
Regarding issues of local taxation, we have a report prepared by M. Bur and M. Richard, which proposes options. (…)./.