Not only... but

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Dragana.BL

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Good afternoon! Would you please be so kind as to tell me if the following sentence s acceptable (it is supposed to be formal):

"I hope that not only shall we maintain the current level of our cooperation, but that we also shall improve it."

Thank you very much in advance!
 

Tarheel

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GoesStation

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It's not natural. There's no reason for inverting we shall at the beginning. Shall is unusual in American English; most writers would use will.

Write I hope that we will not only maintain the current level of cooperation, but that we will also improve it.
 

Tarheel

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Well, the OP says it's supposed to be formal, and it certainly is. And my guess is he's probably focused more on British English (where they use "shall" more).
 

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The inversion at the beginning was just incorrect. You could write Not only will/shall we maintain our current level of cooperation ... but the introductory I hope that​ makes the structure wrong.
 

Dragana.BL

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Thank you! You both seem to be native speakers and both have different opinions. Now imagine what it feels like for us, non-native speakers. :-?
Thanks again.
 

Tarheel

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I don't think we disagree that much. Also, you don't have to be so formal with your questions. Relax!

[Edited to note that rather than thanking people in his/her posts the poster can use the "Thank" button.-]
 

emsr2d2

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It's fine for this BrE speaker too.
 
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