04/21/2011 07:37 am ET Updated Jun 21, 2011

English Proficiency: Countries That Speak The Best English (PHOTOS)

Anybody who has ever traveled or lived outside the US has stories of amusing English bloopers. One of my favorites was meeting a Chinese teenager who proudly gave himself the English name "Ad Lib," in tribute to "Freedom." While Ad Lib was certainly a grander name than other self given names, it isn't uncommon to come across given names like "Fluffy," "Meat," and "Bacon" (These are real people, I assure you. Just not native English speakers). But English is no laughing matter. We've found that English language skills have some serious impact on national economic and social development.

In the same vein as the Happiness Index or the Big Mac Index, the EF English Proficiency Index (EF EPI) takes into account English skills around the world, ranking 44 countries. The following slideshow highlights the index's most interesting findings. For more information, check out