Envoy discusses Culture, Sports and Tourism promotion with Vice Minister Korea | Daily News

Envoy discusses Culture, Sports and Tourism promotion with Vice Minister Korea

Vice Minister Kim Jeongbae with Dr. Mendis exchanging gifts after the formal meeting at the Ministry of Culture, Sports and Tourism
Vice Minister Kim Jeongbae with Dr. Mendis exchanging gifts after the formal meeting at the Ministry of Culture, Sports and Tourism

Ambassador Dr. A. Saj U. Mendis had a meeting with the Vice Minister of Culture, Sports and Tourism of the Republic of Korea, Kim Jeongbae, who is the second highest political personality in the Ministry of Culture, Sports and Tourism.

During the meeting, both the Vice Minister and the Ambassador discussed a multitude of issues ranging from sports such as Taekwondo, Cricket, Soccer, Athletics, Horse Racing and Motor Racing; tourism from the Republic of Korea to Sri Lanka and vice-a-versa and cultural heritage of the two countries, amongst others. The meeting was arranged by the Ambassador of the RoK in Colombo, His Excellency Santhush Jeong Woonjin.

Dr. Mendis highlighted that tourism is one of the largest employers and industries in Sri Lanka as well as one of the highest foreign exchange earners of the country. Due to COVID pandemic, the tourism world over has been affected.In 2019, over 28 million Korean nationals have travelled out of the country but only 13,500 Korean nationals have travelled to Sri Lanka. Dr. Mendis added that the endeavor of the Government of Sri Lanka as well as the Sri Lanka Tourism and the Embassy is to attract not 1% of the Korean tourists but at least 0.5%.

This number would translate to 140,000 Korean tourists to Sri Lanka or over 10-fold increase of the number of Korean tourists who visited Sri Lanka in 2019.

Dr. Mendis stated that given the favorable climatic conditions throughout the year in Sri Lanka, Sri Lanka could be a hub for international sporting activities and training for overseas sports personnel including from the Republic of Korea, which would further deepen and elevate the relations.

Both agreed to cooperate and work together in order to strengthen the tapestry of sports, culture and tourism between the two countries since all three are intertwined and interwoven.