From Shanghai Daily:
Hanyu Pinyin, the Chinese phonetic system, celebrates its 50th anniversary today. About one billion Chinese have used it to learn Mandarin since the first edition of pinyin was issued in 1958.
“Pinyin is useful … it helps us to learn Chinese characters … thanks to pinyin, we learnt how to read,” said 92-year-old Chen Douxiang from Wanrong County, northern Shanxi Province, who still remembers the pinyin poem she learned 50 years ago….
“About one billion Chinese citizens have mastered pinyin, which plays an important role in both Chinese language education and international communication,” said Wang Dengfeng, vice-chairman of the National Language Committee and the director of the language department of the Education Ministry….