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S. Korea to host K-pop concerts to draw more foreign tourists

All Headlines 10:36 November 09, 2016

SEOUL, Nov. 9 (Yonhap) -- South Korea's state-run tourism office said Wednesday it will organize a series of K-pop concerts in the coming weeks in a bid to help attract foreign visitors.

The Korea Tourism Organization (KTO) aims to attain the goal of drawing 16.5 million foreign tourists this year alone, capitalizing on various cultural products related to the Korean Wave, or "hallyu."

The number of foreigners traveling to South Korea stood at 12.7 million as of end-September, according to the KTO.

"We plan to make all-out efforts through the end of this year to attract foreign tourists," Kwon Byung-jeon, a KTO official, said. "We will also continue efforts next year for the growth of the tourism industry for foreigners in quality by developing new content."

In the first of the K-pop concert series, boy band SS301 will hold a fan meeting at the Phoenix Park ski resort in PyeongChang, Gangwon Province, this weekend.

More than 300 foreign visitors are expected to attend the event.

South Korean boy band SS301 performs in this undated file photo. (Yonhap)

Another boy group Supernova, also known as Choshinsung, is scheduled to meet fans in Seoul from Dec. 3-5, followed by a fan meeting here by B1A4 from Dec. 10-12.

The KTO plans to host the events in cooperation with private tour agencies.

"We will hold such events once or twice a month next year," Kwon added.

Meanwhile, the KTO plans to support a large K-pop concert in Gyeongju, North Gyeongsang Province, on Nov. 18.

The event is meant to help the ancient capital city, hit by an earthquake in September, attract tourists. Among those on stage will be Bangtan Boys, TWICE and SHINee. The KTO is using its overseas branches to publicize the concert.

lcd@yna.co.kr
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