Chinese Language Standardisation Council of Malaysia
The Chinese Language Standardisation Council of Malaysia[fn 1] (simplified Chinese: 马来西亚华语规范理事会; traditional Chinese: 馬來西亞華語規範理事會; pinyin: Mǎláixīyà Huáyǔ Guīfàn Lǐshìhuì; Malay: Majlis Pembakuan Bahasa Cina Malaysia), abbreviated Yufan (Chinese: 语范; pinyin: Yǔfàn) is the body charged with regulating the use of the Chinese language in Malaysia.
Malaysia is home to approximately 7.2 million ethnic Chinese (26% of the population). The use of the Chinese language is preserved through Chinese vernacular education. Many varieties of Chinese are also used.
Malaysian Chinese have the option of sending their children to vernacular public schools which use Chinese as the medium of instruction at the primary level. At secondary level, some students opt for Chinese Independent High Schools, instead of national public schools, which use Malay as the medium of instruction.
Malaysia also has a robust Chinese-language media. The Sin Chew Daily is the highest-circulated daily newspaper of any language in Malaysia. News telecasts read in Chinese are broadcast by state television stations TV2 and Bernama TV, and private stations such as TV3, ntv7 and 8TV.
The simplified Chinese script is used in Malaysia.
In 1997, Malaysia hosted the Seminar on Chinese Language Teaching in Southeast Asia, after which scholars in Malaysia agreed to form the Chinese Language Standardisation Working Committee (Chinese: 马来西亚华语规范工委会), which was the predecessor to Yufan. The Working Committee consisted of representatives from civil society organisations. It was dissolved in 2003.
In order to standardise the use of Chinese by the Chinese media in Malaysia, the Ministry of Information formed the Standardisation Council on 12 February 2004.
The Council's stated mission is to "encourage the use of standard Chinese, including translated names, phonetics, grammar, words and text, without discouraging the use of dialects". It consists of six divisions, each in charge of specific areas: translation, information, phonetics, grammar, vocabulary and writing, and publishing.
Members of the Council consist of representatives from the Ministry of Education, the Association of Translation and Creative Writing, the Federation of Chinese Associations (Huazhong), the private Chinese education sector, the Home Ministry, Chinese newspapers, Chinese radio stations and public universities.
The following is the list of Chairmen of the Standardisation Council since 2004:
- Donald Lim Siang Chai, as Deputy Information Minister (2004–2006)
- Hon Choon Kim, as Deputy Education Minister (2006–2009)
- Wee Ka Siong, as Deputy Education Minister (2009–present)
- Although Malaysian English generally prefers -ise, Yufan's official site is ambiguous between -ise and -ize in its name.
- "马来西亚华语规范理事会简介" (in Chinese). Yufan. Retrieved 2011-05-22.
- "The ABC Report: Circulation Figures for the period ending 30 June 2010" (PDF). Audit Bureau of Circulations Malaysia. Retrieved 2011-05-24.
- "2010-2013年理事会委员阵容" (in Chinese). Yufan. Retrieved 2011-05-22.