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60 Pct of Overseas Residents View Korea Favorably After Experiencing ‘Hallyu’ – Be Korea-savvy

The director and cast of "Squid Game" wave during a news conference at a Seoul hotel, in this file photo taken Sept. 16, 2022, to mark the dystopian drama's winning of six Emmy awards. The global smash hit Korean-language Netflix show won best director, best actor, guest acting, stunts, production design and visual effects at the 74th Emmy Awards in Los Angeles on Sept. 12. (Image courtesy of Yonhap)

The director and cast of “Squid Game” wave during a news conference at a Seoul hotel, in this file photo taken Sept. 16, 2022, to mark the dystopian drama’s winning of six Emmy awards. The global smash hit Korean-language Netflix show won best director, best actor, guest acting, stunts, production design and visual effects at the 74th Emmy Awards in Los Angeles on Sept. 12. (Image courtesy of Yonhap)

SEOUL, Apr. 2 (Korea Bizwire)Six out of 10 overseas residents reported a positive change in their perception of Korea after experiencing globally popular Korean cultural content, a government report showed Tuesday.

The 2024 report issued by the Ministry of Culture, Sports and Tourism and its affiliate, the Korean Foundation for International Cultural Exchange, showed that 66.1 percent of respondents who had engaged with Korean content, such as TV dramas and films, experienced a favorable impact on their perception of Korea.

The report was based on an online survey conducted in November on 25,000 people residing in 26 countries worldwide who had experienced Korean cultural content.

The figure, 66.1 percent, marks a 5.8 percentage-point increase from 60.3 percent in 2022.

About 30 percent of respondents said the content had no effect on their perception, while 3.8 percent reported a negative change.

When asked about their preference for Korean content, 68.8 percent of respondents expressed a positive sentiment, a 3.7 percentage-point increase from the previous year. Particularly high levels of likeability were observed in other Asian countries, such as Indonesia (86.3 percent), India (84.5 percent), Thailand (83 percent), the United Arab Emirates (83 percent) and Vietnam (82.9 percent).

More than 89 percent of respondents answered their interest in Korean content had either increased (45.9 percent) compared with one year ago or remained unchanged (43.5 percent). Egypt reported the highest increase at 67.6 percent, followed by India at 67.1 percent and Saudi Arabia at 65.1 percent.

However, negative perceptions of the global boom of Korean content, known as “hallyu,” also increased in 2023 with 32.6 percent expressing a negative view, up 5.5 percentage points from the previous year. The main reasons cited were it being “excessively provocative” (24.9 percent), “uniform and boring” (22 percent) and “excessively commercial” (21.1 percent).

The average monthly consumption of Korean content per person among those who had experienced hallyu was found to be 11.6 hours. By country, India and Thailand tied for the highest consumption at 18.6 hours. Indonesia came in third with 17 hours, closely followed by Vietnam with 16.4 hours. In contrast, Japan, Canada, Australia and Italy had monthly averages of less than 10 hours.

Netlix’s global megahit “Squid Game” (2021) was chosen as the favorite Korean TV series for the third consecutive year. Coming in second and third in the drama category were “The Glory” (2022-2023) and “King the Land” (2023).

“Squid Game” garnered significant popularity in Europe (23.7 percent) and the Americas (8.3 percent), while “The Glory” found favor in the Asia-Pacific region (5.4 percent).

Among Korean films, “Parasite” (2019) and “Train to Busan” (2016) claimed the top two spots. “Parasite” was the most cherished Korean film in Europe (10.7 percent) and the Americas (12.6 percent), whereas “Train to Busan” was mainly popular in the Asia-Pacific region (8.2 percent).

The report attributed the steady popularity of these titles to the lack of recent content capable of surpassing them.

(Yonhap)