150 Million Words Translated: the German EU Council Presidency Translator Sets New Records

Tilde EU Coincil Presidency Translator

As part of the Germany’s Presidency of the Council of the European Union, during the second half of 2020, the EU Council Presidency Translator helped to overcome language barriers by translating more than 150 million words! It is ten times more than during the same period last year. The multilingual communication tool has been used in 139 countries and the translated volume is more than the previous six EU Council presidencies combined. 

“Covid-19 pandemic has influenced not only our professional lives and daily activities, but also machine translation trends by significantly increasing the demand for safe and instant translations. Germany’s EU Council Presidency became the first “virtual” presidency and for the first time the official Presidency’s website was translated into all 24 official EU languages,” says Andrejs Vasiljevs, chairman of the Tilde Board. “We are pleased that our technology became so valuable to the operations of the German Presidency, enabling all EU citizens to access the latest information in their mother tongue. This solution shows how AI technologies can be used to contribute to the language equality within the EU.”

The translated volume during the German Presidency is comparable to more than 1,949 Harry Potter book volumes, and for one very productive human translator it would take 290 years to complete a task of this magnitude.

Guided by the EU’s motto “United in diversity”, the EU Council Presidency Translator has made another step towards overcoming the language barrier and facilitating seamless multilingual communication. The EU Presidency Translator not only made multilingual communication quick and easy for the staff of the Germany’s EU Presidency, delegates and journalists during the current global crisis, but also helped the public in general to deal with linguistic challenges. The EU Presidency Translator is an excellent example showcasing European language technology and “AI made in Europe”, which are on a promising path to enabling citizens to truly communicate across language barriers.   

About the EU Council Presidency Translator

The EU Presidency Translator offers instant translation of texts, documents and websites, secure data processing and multilingual access and exchange of information in all 24 official EU languages. It also provides support to human translators and other services that facilitate the daily activities of EU Council Presidency staff. In cooperation with the German Research Centre for Artificial Intelligence (DFKI), Tilde provided a secure online translation platform for the German EU Council Presidency – the “EU Council Presidency Translator”. The EU Council Presidency Translator combines experience and expertise of lead research (DFKI), industry (Tilde, DeepL) and public sector (e-Translation) companies and organizations, and also aims to enhance the knowledge and inclination to use AI based translation made in Europe. The project was supported by a grant from the Federal Foreign Office.

To date, Tilde has supported eight EU Council Presidencies in facilitating multilingual communication and overcoming the language barrier. The secure online translation platform is freely accessible to the public: presidencymt.eu