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Asia-Europe Culture Ministers' Meeting to open in Gwangju next week

According to Yonhap News,

(SEOUL=Yonhap News) High-level cultural officials from the Asian and European region will gather in the southwestern South Korean city of Gwangju next week for a meeting to discuss the future of "creative economy," organizers said Wednesday.

The 7th Asia-Europe Culture Ministers' Meeting will take place at the Asia Culture Center, a state-run arts and concert venue in the city located 330 kilometers south of Seoul, from Wednesday to Friday next week.

Some 200 delegates, including eight culture ministers and 11 deputy ministers, from 51 Asian and European countries around the world will take part in the meeting, the Ministry of Culture, Sports and Tourism said.

"Creative economy" is President Park Geun-hye's flagship policy of turning new and creative ideas into real business opportunities with the help of cutting-edge science and information technology.

Launched in Beijing in 2003, the cultural ministers' meeting of the Asia-Europe Meeting (ASEM) has been held biennially in Asia and Europe in turn with the purpose of facilitating cultural exchanges and cooperation among the member countries. The last meeting was held in the Netherlands in 2014.

ASEM is an exclusively Asian–European forum to enhance relations and promote political, economic and other exchanges. This would be the first time for South Korea to host an ASEM cultural ministers' meeting.

Discussions on the issue of "creative industries" began in the sixth meeting with the focus of previous meetings put on sharing participating countries' policy experiences on the preservation of cultural heritage and the expansion of cultural diversity.

The ministry said South Korea came to host the seventh meeting as the meeting's recent shift of focus appears to be on creating a good match between government-led drive for "creative economy" and "cultural enrichment."

Under the theme "culture and creative economy," the meeting will discuss the future of cutting-edge technologies and creative industry; traditional culture and creative economy; and international cooperation for cultivating creative industries.

South Korea will present its policy of creating the Culture Creation Convergence Belt as a model case of fostering creative industries on Thursday.

The government began creating the belt composed of a creative convergence center, a creative venture center, an academy and a cluster of cultural performance facilities, early last year to help tech venture startups work with each other to develop and commercialize creative ideas. The belt, moreover, aims to foster talent in the culture and content industries.

On Friday, South Korean Culture Minister Kim Jong-deok will announce a non-binding Chairman's Statement in his capacity as the meeting's chairman.

The ministry plans to propose the ASEM members build a network of young talents interested in turning their creative cultural ideas into businesses.

Ministry officials said the network will begin with four or five countries, including South Korea, but will develop to have more members so they can lead the future of creative industries in the Asia-Europe region.

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Source Text

Source: Yonhap News (Jun. 15, 2016)