The protracted controversy over the country's official Mandarin romanization system was ended yesterday when the Ministry of Education announced that it opted for the Tongyong Pinyin System (
The system -- which is 85 percent similar to the Hanyu Pinyin system -- was created by a group of "pro-Taiwan" linguists who say their new system is more suitable for teaching native languages to the children of Taiwan.
The decision was made at a meeting held by the Mandarin Promotion Council (MPC,
The issue has been pending for years and is seen as a highly political matter.
Former education minister Ovid Tzeng (
His removal is considered to be one of the most obvious examples of the issue's political significance.
It is widely believed that Education Minister Huang Jong-tsun (
The 27-member MPC task force is still working on ways in which to standardize the English spelling of the street signs. The task force is also looking at how to use the system for the teaching of native languages -- including Hokkien, Hakka and Aboriginal languages.