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"Hallyu" Tourists Inundate Gangwon Province

2005/02/15 | 146 views | Permalink | Source

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The popularity of Korean pop-culture has drawn a growing number of foreign touritsts to the filming sites of KBS drama "Winter Sonata". As a result, the number of foreign currency exchange transactions has soared in Gangwon Province recently.

According to the Gangneung Branch of the Bank of Korea (BOK), the amount of foreign currency exchanged at 27 currency exchange offices on the east coast of Korea recorded US$1.44 million last year, a record high in the last four years since 2001 and 1.4 times as high as in the previous year.

The Japanese yen was exchanged in the amount of $600,000, or more than three times as much as in the previous year, accounting for 41.3 percent of the total amount of currency exchange. This shows how popular Korean celebrities are with Japanese fans.

"The rapid increase in the exchange of the Japanese yen is ascribable to the growing number of Japanese tourists visiting the east coast on the popularity of Korean television dramas", said a BOK official.

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