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With the vast territory and tremendous size of its population, Indonesia will dominate the economy in Asia for the next few decades. More and more new businesses will enter Indonesia. Bahasa Indonesia is the official language spoken in Indonesia. Although most people in big cities can speak English, there are major benefits of learning Indonesian:

1. People in Indonesia tend to better relate with you if you speak in their own language. This is particularly important if you do business there. Understanding the culture and the language is the key to your business success.

2. Indonesian language provides an insight into the Indonesian cultures. Understanding how the language works will help you understand the people you are dealing with. This is especially important in a business negotiation.

3. There are some phrases and sentences that do not have equivalent English translations. Or if they do, the meaning will slightly differ. You don’t want this to happen especially when you deal with legal documents or important reports.

4. Not all Indonesians can speak English. Most of the time, in small cities and rural areas, Indonesians speak Bahasa Indonesia or speak in their own dialect. Even if they speak Indonesian, their accents might not be easily understood. You won’t want to buy or say something you don’t intend to convey.

5. Bahasa Indonesia is a fairly easy language to learn. There are no tenses and no gender nouns. However, it has different types of prefixes and suffixes. Learning how to speak Bahasa might be easier than writing it. Based on our experience, within 30 hours of intensive, guided-learning, students are able to construct sentences on their own and speak basic Indonesian.

6. Indonesia has beautiful works of arts such as pantun, sajak, puisi, gurindam, and seloka. All these are different types of poetry. Besides these, there are a lot of interesting fables and traditional folklores associated with different provinces in Indonesia.

7. When you master Bahasa Indonesia, you can also understand Malay. Due to its root, there are similarities between the two languages. Of course the vocabulary is not exactly the same, but chances are if you know how to speak Bahasa Indonesia, you will be able to understand Bahasa Melayu as well. Killing two birds with one stone.

8. Learning language is always an investment. Bahasa Indonesia is no different. You can travel throughout beautiful Indonesia without having to worry about communicating with the natives.

Maria Putera has been teaching Indonesian in Singapore for more than 10 years. Besides face-to-face training, she also teaches Indonesian language online. She is currently the curriculum developer for LIA. Visit our website at http://www.lia.com.sg or contactus@lia.com.sg to start learning Indonesian today.

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