As many as 65% of European citizens between the ages of 25 and 64 speak at least one foreign language, according to data published on the occasion of the European Day of Languages on Wednesday.
The same Eurostat report, based on data from 2016, found the highest language proficiency in Sweden (97% of citizens speak at least one foreign language), Latvia, Denmark and Lithuania (96%), Luxembourg (95%), Finland and Malta (92% ) and Estonia (91%).
Ranking very low down in the table, 65.4% of adults in the UK spoke no foreign languages at all, just 20% spoke one foreign language, 9.6% mastered two other languages and 5% could speak three additional languages.
Close behind the UK were Romania (64.2% of citizens spoke no foreign languages), Bosnia and Herzegovina (61%), Albania (59.9%) and Hungary (57.6%).
Levels of multilingualism were reportedly very high in Luxembourg, where more than half of the population (51.2%) claims to speak at least three foreign languages.
Luxembourg has three official languages (Luxembourgish, French, German) and the most-spoken additional languages are English, Portuguese, Italian, according to a 2012 report.
High percentages of three foreign languages were also seen in Finland (44.9%) and Slovenia (37.7%).
The European Day of Languages takes place annually on September 26 and is jointly organised by the Council of Europe and the European Union with the aim of encouraging language learning across Europe.