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Tuna Powers The “Food Korean Wave” Into SE Asia

Tuna from Korea has made a significant contribution in the rise of Korean food exported to the Association of Southwest Asian Nations (ASEAN) region.

The Korea Agro-Fisheries Trade Corp. (aT) stated that Korean exports to ASEAN had grown to nine percent more than that to China, and for the five month period from January to May had totaled USD 546.3 million.

Amongst this growth, the volume of tuna exported from Korea to the ASEAN region increased by 28.3 percent with a value of USD 90.1 million.

An aT official said: “Last year the food export amount to ASEAN was USD 1,192.8 million, ranking third after Japan and China. But this year it is likely that ASEAN will overtake China and take the second position.”

Food industry officials believe that the popularity of Korean foods in Southeast Asia derives from the increased attention towards Korean dramas and songs, such as artist Psy’s success with Gangnam Style. Officials said while this popularity has cooled substantially in China, the ‘Korean Wave’ continues to be a strong force in Southeast Asia.