Gimhae, Gyeongsangnam-do Province, is designated "East Asia's cultural city for 2024."
The Ministry of Culture, Sports and Tourism on Dec. 27 announced Gimhae as Korea's "East Asia's cultural city for 2024" after a ministry selection committee picked the southern coastal city on Dec. 20.
Under the slogan "Golden Sea Knocks on Asia," Gimhae will hold cultural exchange and cooperation programs related to East Asia like exhibitions of international sculpture and script and festivals for children's theater and the environment for teens. The city also plans to set up a platform for sustainable cultural exchange connected to regional cultural projects.
A suburb of Busan, Gimhae has a population of about 535,300 and is the second-largest city in Gyeongsangnam-do after Changwon. Gimhae was also the capital of Geumgwan Gaya, a tribal state from the first to early sixth century that occupied the downstream area of the Nakdonggang River.
At the fourth meeting of culture ministers of Korea, Japan and China in May 2012 in Shanghai, China, the three countries agreed to practice the spirit of "East Asian awareness, cultural exchange and convergence, and inter-cultural understanding." Since 2014, they have selected cities representative of each country's cultural traditions as "East Asian cultural cities" and held annual cultural exchange events.
Starting with Gwangju in 2014, Korea has designated as East Asian cultural cities Cheongju, Chungcheongbuk-do Province, Jeju Island, Daegu and Busan.
Next year, Korea, China and Japan will officially announce their official 2024 selections for the cities at their 14th meeting of culture ministers in Jeonju, Jeollabuk-do Province.
The ministry said, "Gimhae is rich in attractive historical and cultural resources unique to the region," adding, "By actively supporting cultural exchange and cooperation projects with each cultural city selected by China and Japan, we will serve as a leading example of East Asian co-prosperity and harmony and a growth engine for regional development."