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Creative content industry grows 7% in first half, KOCCA report

Content agency says sales yet to recover to pre-pandemic state

By Lee Si-jin

Published : Dec. 19, 2022 - 14:35

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South Korea's creative content sales rose 7 percent in the first half of the year amid overseas expansion and eased COVID-19 curbs, the Korea Creative Content Agency said Monday.

The combined sales by 11 sectors of the creative content industry, including film, music, webtoon and more, came to a total of 66.9 trillion won ($50.8 billion) in the first half of the year, compared with 62.5 trillion won in the same period a year earlier, according to data compiled by the agency.

Sales from movies rose 58.1 percent as the government lifted social distancing rules and the long-awaited sequel “The Roundup” was the first film to sell over 10 million tickets since the onset of the pandemic, with a total of 12.6 million tickets sold.

Hit films “The Witch: Part 2. The Other One,” “Broker,” “The Policeman’s Lineage” and more, quenched the thirst of moviegoers.

While the film sector saw a year-on-year rise, KOCCA emphasized that the increase was heavily impacted by the prolonged COVID-19 and the film industry has yet to recover to its pre-pandemic state.

Music industry saw its sales advance 31.7 percent. Sales of Korean paper comics, called “manhwa,” and webtoons, meanwhile, also went up 31.7 percent.

Categories of broadcasting, knowledge information, games, publisher, animation and advertisement saw less than a 10 percent rise in their sales.

South Korean creative content industry's year-on-year growth in sales (KOCCA) South Korean creative content industry's year-on-year growth in sales (KOCCA)

According to the report from KOCCA, the country’s content exports inched up 0.5 percent year-on-year, recording 5.4 billion won ($41.5 million).

Publisher and games exports decreased 34.2 percent and 1.4 percent, respectively, while exports in other sectors increased.

The number of South Korean workers in the creative content industry went up 1.6 percent in the first half of the year, recording 652,000 workers.

Most of the sectors either inched up or inched down from the same period last year. But the number of workers in the Korean comic book industry increased 26.7 percent due to the popularity of webtoons and its global expansion.

Other issues of 2022, such as analysis of local companies, creative content industry trends and more are addressed in the report, which can be found on the KOCCA website at www.kocca.kr.