Culture ministers from South Korea, China and Japan began their three-day annual meeting in Harbin, China, on Wednesday, the South Korean culture ministry said.
Culture ministers Do Jong-whan of South Korea, Luo Shugang of China and Yoshimasa Hayashi of Japan will discuss ways to expand trilateral cultural exchanges and cooperation and announce a declaration for this on Thursday.
The officials vowed to push for cooperation for developing the common brand of the East Asian Culture City and to continue strengthening practical cooperation between culture-arts organizations of the three countries, among other pledges, in the pre-release version of the declaration.
They are also expected to expand existing trilateral cultural cooperation involving national museums and libraries to national art galleries and other culture-arts organizations.
Under an agreement reached during the fourth culture ministers' talks in 2012, the three countries have each designated one of their cities as an East Asian Culture City every year, a kind of a hub for promoting artistic and cultural development and exchanges in the region. South Korea's second largest city of Busan shares the title for this year with Harbin and Kanazawa of Japan. The three cities chosen for 2019 are Incheon, China's Xian and Toshima, a special ward in Tokyo.
In his keynote speech during the main session on Thursday, Do will emphasize the need to increase the three countries' cultural cooperation with North Korea as a way to resettle peace and expand cultural exchanges in the region, the culture ministry said.
His speech raises the need for the three major East Asian countries "to melt the last piece of ice of the Cold War left on the Korean Peninsula and open a new way toward contributing to peace and coexistence in Northeast Asia," the ministry said. (Yonhap)