SEOUL, Feb. 5 (Korea Bizwire) — Some eight out of ten foreigners around the world positively evaluated the image of South Korea.
According to an online survey of 8,000 people in 16 countries, including South Korea, by the Korean Culture and Information Service operating under the Ministry of Culture, Sports and Tourism, 76.7 percent of foreigners said they had positive views about Korea’s overall image.
On the other hand, the data also showed that some 64.8 percent of South Koreans had a positive opinion about South Korea.
The ratio of positive assessments among Koreans rose by more than 10 percentage points compared to the previous year when it stood at 54.4 percent.
In addition, the gap between foreigners and Koreans in the ratio of positive evaluations has narrowed to 11.9 percentage points, or less than half of the previous year’s 25.9 percentage points.
Meanwhile, when it comes to factors that affected the positive image, 38.2 percent chose pop culture, including K-pop, movies and literature.
This was followed by 14.6 percent citing the economy, 14 percent choosing cultural heritage and 11.6 percent citing Korean products and brands.
In terms of areas or fields where foreigners were introduced to Korea, pop culture was most cited at 37.8 percent. The economy ranked second at 13.9 percent, followed by cultural heritage at 10.5 percent.
By geographic areas, Russia, Southeast Asia (including Thailand), Indonesia, Latin America (such as Brazil and Mexico), India, and the United Arab Emirates had more than 85 percent positive assessments of Korea’s image.
On the other hand, Japan’s negative assessment rate stood at 53.2 percent, up from 43.4 percent the previous year.
As a task to improve Korea’s image, the top priority was “peaceful resolution of inter-Korean issues,” accounting for 33.8 percent, followed by “friendly attitudes towards foreigners,” accounting for 15.1 percent and “foreign publicity to attract tourists,” accounting for 15 percent.
Kevin Lee (firstname.lastname@example.org)