On the basis of census figures and some 'guesstimates' on trends of population growth, an attempt is made in this paper to extrapolate the future of English in Asia.
Asia, as used in this study, will be limited to East Asia and the Pacific, precluding from consideration the Middle East and the Near East or the Mediterranean area. More specifically, considerations will be limited to the following countries: Hongkong, Singapore Burma, Cambodia, Laos, Vietnam, Thailand, Indonesia, Malaysia, the Philippines, Ceylon, India, Pakistan, Bangladesh, the People's Republic of China, Nationalist China, Japan, Korea, Australia and New Zealand.
While the focus of interest has to do with the extent of language competence in one signaling system, the English language, the factual base has to be the population of language users or performers. The sources of data are based on secondary sources, UNESCO statistical yearbooks and UN reports of the Population Reference Bureau, Inc.