South Korea appoints girls group NewJeans as ambassadors for tourism

Aiming to enlist the global popularity of K-pop to promote inbound tourism, the South Korean government has appointed the popular girls group NewJeans as honorary ambassadors.

The group's members attended an appointment ceremony in Seoul on Thursday.

Member Minji said they want to be at the forefront of efforts to promote South Korea's wide-ranging attractions.

Speaking at the ceremony, South Korea's culture, sports and tourism minister Yu In-chon said the government hopes to welcome 20 million inbound tourists this year.

He said he has great expectations for the members of NewJeans in their new role.

Tourism promotional videos released at the ceremony showed the group's members enjoying Korean food and other activities.

The videos are to be aired worldwide, including in New York's Times Square, Tokyo and Paris, where the Olympic Games will start later this month.

NewJeans has quickly risen to international fame. In 2023, the five-member group topped the US Billboard albums chart. That same year, it also appeared on NHK's annual New Year's Eve live music show.