The hallyu star managed by Starhaus Entertainment appears in the ad produced by the Ministry of Culture, Sports and Tourism. The commercial’s catchphrase is, “Korea, let your story begin.”
Lee, 28, finished shooting the ad in mid-July. The ad will be aired on major TV networks in other countries, including the American TV news channel CNN and Chinese state-run CCTV, starting in August.
The ad features Lee introducing some of the nation’s most popular tourist destinations, including the Cheonggyecheon stream, and a traditional hanok (Korean house) town in central Seoul.
The ad aims to increase the number of foreign tourists whose numbers dropped after the Middle East Respiratory Syndrome (MERS) epidemic in May and June. The government declared an end to the outbreak Tuesday morning.
“It was meaningful to participate in the ad and promote the nation to the world,” the company said. “We hope the nation’s tourism industry revives with this ad.”
SEOUL, July 24 (Yonhap) — Lee Min-ho, a Korean actor hugely popular at home and in China, will appear in a government-produced TV advertisement aimed at jumpstarting the recovery of the domestic tourism industry hit hard by the spread of MERS, the government said Friday.
The star of the popular Korean TV series “Boys Over Flowers” and “The Heirs” finished filming the ad earlier this month, according to the Ministry of Culture, Sports and Tourism.
He introduces four to five of the country’s hottest tourist spots in the advertisement for foreign viewers, the ministry said.
The ad will be released on major TV channels and online sites in such countries as the United States, Canada, China, Japan, Taiwan and Thailand, starting early next month, it said.
“We’re going to launch an aggressive ad campaign that can induce residents of major foreign countries to visit to achieve an early recovery of the local tourism market mired in a slump due to the spread of MERS,” a ministry official said.
The infectious disease has claimed dozens of lives in South Korea but is now nearing eradication.
The number of incoming tourists nosedived 41 percent on-year in June, contracting for the first time in 25 months, according to the Korea Tourism Organization.
South Korea has reported no additional cases of Middle East Respiratory Syndrome for the past 19 days, with the death toll remaining flat at 36 for nearly two consecutive weeks.
Since the first case was reported in May, 186 people have been diagnosed with the potentially fatal disease while 138 of them have been discharged from hospitals following complete recoveries.
Cre Samsonite Korea