Number of visitors to Korea grows in March after 12 months of decline

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Published on 23 Apr 2018, 12:35
3월 방한 외국인 관광객 137만명…1년만에 성장세로 전환

The number of foreign visitors to the nation took a drastic dive last year... for various reasons including China's retaliatory measures over a defense upgrade.
After about 12 months of on-year decline, finally we're seeing a rebound.
Kim Hyesung sheds light on what's driving this welcome trend.
The number of foreign visitors to Korea in March jumped more than 10 percent on-year to 1-point-37 million tourists.
According to the Korea Tourism Organization Monday, March was the first time in 12 months that the country saw a boost in the number of visitors.
A diplomatic standoff between Seoul and Beijing last year over Korea's deployment of a U.S. missile defense system,... led to a sharp decline in the number of Chinese tourists to Korea,...who accounted for nearly half of the total number of foreign visitors to the country in 2016.
The KTO attributed the latest turnaround to improving bilateral ties between Seoul and Beijing, lowered tensions on the Korean peninsula, and the Korean government's efforts to attract more visitors from countries other than China.
According to its data, the number of visitors from China rose near 12 percent last month on-year to over 400-thousand.
The number of visitors from Japan also received a boost for the first time in more than 5 years, recording 294 thousand last month, which the KTO said was driven in large part by the new hallyu boom, or the Korean wave, among Japanese young people, who are interested in Korean cosmetics and fashion items.
Visitors from Taiwan rose more than 26 percent on-year, and those from Hong Kong and Vietnam also surged over 30 percent and 49 percent on-year respectively.
Visitors from the U.S., Canada and Russia also went up by double digits in March.
Kim Hyesung, Arirang News.

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