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(LEAD) Yoon vows to ease regulations on culture, movie industries

All News 14:48 April 28, 2023

(ATTN: UPDATES with Yoon's remarks at forum; CHANGES headline, dateline)
By Shim Sun-ah and Lee Haye-ah

WASHINGTON/SEOUL, April 28 (Yonhap) -- South Korean President Yoon Suk Yeol vowed to remove regulations on the culture and movie industries if they do not meet global standards.

Yoon made the pledge during a forum co-hosted by South Korea's culture ministry and the U.S. Motion Picture Association (MPA) in Washington on Thursday, saying South Korea's development over the course of the 70-year bilateral alliance has turned it into a global cultural power.

"States must not put boundaries on culture," he said at the Global Creative Industry Leadership Forum held at the MPA building. "The Korean market is of course incorporated into the single world market, and if there are regulations on the Korean culture or movie industries that are different from global standards, I will abolish and remove them for sure."

Yoon is currently on a six-day state visit to the United States to mark the 70th anniversary of the alliance.

The presidential office said Yoon also promised to spare no assistance for more joint productions and other cooperation models, greater people-to-people exchanges and investment, and the protection of copyrights in order to strengthen exchanges and cooperation between the two countries' content industries.

The forum was attended by six global film studios and streaming services affiliated with the MPA -- Paramount, Warner Bros. Discovery, NBCUniversal, Sony Pictures, Walt Disney and Netflix.

The six companies together account for 77 percent of the world's movie and video market and 45 percent of the global streaming market.

South Korean President Yoon Suk Yeol (R) converses with Charles H. Rivkin, chairman and CEO of the U.S. Motion Picture Association (MPA) during the Global Creative Industry Leadership Forum at the MPA building in Washington, D.C. on April 27, 2023. (Yonhap)

South Korean President Yoon Suk Yeol (R) converses with Charles H. Rivkin, chairman and CEO of the U.S. Motion Picture Association (MPA) during the Global Creative Industry Leadership Forum at the MPA building in Washington, D.C. on April 27, 2023. (Yonhap)

On hand at the forum from South Korea was Korean entertainment giant CJ Group executive Lee Mie-kyung, and representatives from six video content companies, including SLL, Watcha and Astory. Actor Lee Seo-jin, best known for his roles in such reality TV shows as "Three Meals a Day" and "Grandpa Over Flowers," also took part.

The participants discussed strategies for expanding human exchanges and joint production between the video content industries from the two countries and increasing U.S. investment in the Korean content industry, according to the culture ministry.

The ministry views the event as an opportunity to open new doors for the Korean content industry, which has struggled to advance in major markets, such as the U.S., despite its strong competitiveness.

"'Culture and K-video content' has been another keyword for President Yoon Suk Yeol's state visit to the United States, along with security and economy," Minister of Culture, Sports and Tourism Park Bo-gyoon said during the forum. "It is rare for MPA executives and six global video content companies to gather at one place during a president's state visit. It's a scene that reflects the high global status and influence of K-video content."

Park also explained the sustainability and potential power of the content and asked the leaders of the American companies to actively invest in the Korean content market.

South Korean President Yoon Suk Yeol (C) speaks during the Global Creative Industry Leadership Forum held at the main building of the U.S. Motion Picture Association in Washington, D.C. on April 27, 2023. (Yonhap)

South Korean President Yoon Suk Yeol (C) speaks during the Global Creative Industry Leadership Forum held at the main building of the U.S. Motion Picture Association in Washington, D.C. on April 27, 2023. (Yonhap)

In response, the U.S. companies explained their plans to invest in the production of over 45 Korean titles this year and to strengthen cooperation with the K-content industry and creators.

Netflix had previously announced Monday, the first day of Yoon's state visit, that it will invest US$2.5 billion in the Korean content industry, including Korean TV dramas and movies.

After the forum, two government agencies affiliated with the culture ministry -- the Korea Creative Content Agency and the Korean Film Council -- signed a memorandum of understanding with Netflix to foster young talent in the Korean content industry and spread Korean culture.

sshim@yna.co.kr
(END)

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