South Korea will take part in the Paris Book Fair next week as the guest of honor, as the country celebrates the 130th anniversary of diplomatic ties with France, the Seoul government said Wednesday.
The fair is expected to help promote exchanges among publishers in South Korea and France, the Ministry of Culture, Sports and Tourism said in a release.
The 36th edition of the annual trade fair is scheduled to be held at the "Paris Expo Porte de Versailles" exhibition center on March 17-20.
Led by the Korean Publishers Association, five Korean publishing associations and government agencies will run an exhibition hall featuring South Korean books and introduce the authors under the slogan "New Horizon," the ministry said.
The exhibition hall will have a special exhibition and business section, a bookstore and a place to hold business meetings and other events.
On display in the special exhibition section will be some 60 books by the country's 30 most influential authors as well as major e-books, children's books, cartoons and webtoons.
In the business section, seven domestic publishers, including Yeowon Media and YeaRimDang Publishing Co., will set up booths to consult with foreign publishers wanting to buy the copyrights to their books.
Gibert Joseph, a leading French bookstore, will display and sell some 10,000 Korean books, including French translations, to visitors in the bookstore corner.
Before the book fair's opening, publishing industry leaders from the two countries will hold a two-day conference at the French national book center in Paris on March 16-17 to discuss ways to increase bilateral exchange.
On March 16-20, the 30 South Korean authors such as Hwang Sok-yong, Han Kang, Lee Seung-u, Moon Chung-hee, Oh Jung-hi and Mah Chong-gi, will take part in book-reading events, forums and seminars on such subjects as "women and family," "globalization of literature" and "literature and religion."
There will be a performance of classical music and traditional Korean music as the opener in a series of events to mark South Korea's status as the guest of honor.
"We hope the events that take place to commemorate the 130th year of diplomatic ties between South Korea and France will become a chance for the world's publishing industry to experience Korean publishing culture, and for Korean authors and their works to make headway in the European market," said Yoon Tae-yong, chief of the ministry's office for overseeing cultural content industry.
Launched in 1981, the Paris Book Fair is considered one of the biggest publishing trade fair in Europe. More than 250,000 publishers, booksellers, authors, literary agents, librarians and media and industry suppliers attended the fair last year. (Yonhap)