Korea’s event calendar fully booked

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Korea’s event calendar fully booked

This year, Korea is hoping that it will be able to upgrade its global status to a higher level by hosting renowned international events that encompass diverse industry sectors like technology and sports. In the past several years, Korea hosted big events like the G-20 Summit in 2010 and the Seoul Nuclear Security in 2012 and has presented itself on the global stage.

This year is no exception. There are noticeable international events being hosted across the nation and the Korea JoongAng Daily selected the top five that are gaining wide attention.

1. The International Telecommunication Union (ITU) Plenipotentiary Conference

A big event in the information and communications sector this year is the International Telecommunications Union Plenipotentiary Conference that will be held in Busan in October. The union is an information and communications technology (ICT) body under the United Nations that aims to expand ICT by managing international frequency and satellite orbits and developing technology standards for the information and communications sector. The conference is held every four years and is attended by ministerial-level officials from each of the 193 member countries of the International Telecommunication Union.

According to the preparation committee, for this year’s ITU conference, Korea, as the host, plans on putting issues like converging information technology, medicine and education on the table.

“We plan to lead global policies [related to ICT] so that we become first movers rather than fast followers,” said a committee official.

2. 17th Asian Games

For 16 days, the 17th Asian Games will be held in Incheon, Gyeonggi, where the eyes of 4 billion Asians will be focused. Athletes from 45 countries are expected to take part in the event that will be held from Sept. 19 to Oct. 4.

The Asian Games is considered one of the world’s five largest sporting events, along with the Olympics, the FIFA World Cup and the World Championship in Athletics. It is the third time that Korea is hosting the Asian Games after 1986 in Seoul and in 2002 in Busan.

The sporting event in Incheon is expected to draw 13,000 athletes and related officials, and about 7,000 reporters from around the world.

Meanwhile, there are two other big international sports events this year: the Winter Olympics in Sochi, Russia, in February and the World Cup in Brazil in June.

3. Convention on Biological Diversity

The Ministry of Environment and Gangwon Province said they are hosting the 12th Convention on Biological Diversity from Sept. 29 to Oct. 17 in Pyeongchang, Gangwon. The international convention is held for three weeks every two years and is a United Nations meeting. About 20,000 people from 193 countries are expected to attend the event under the slogan of “Biodiversity for Sustainable Development.” Attendees will discuss measures to efficiently use and preserve natural resources.

4. Congress of the World Conference on Constitutional Justice

For four days starting Sept. 28, about 400 people from 100 countries, including chief justices and judges, will attend the third Congress of the World Conference on Constitutional Justice that will be held in Seoul. The first congress was held in South Africa in 2009 and the second one was held in Brazil in 2011. Korea’s Constitutional Court has been very active in providing know-how and study programs to other countries, including Indonesia, Turkey, Thailand, Mongolia and Cambodia. An official from the Constitutional Court said the court expects the international congress will allow Korea to export its own court experiences and system to not only Asian countries but also those in eastern Europe, central and Latin America and Africa. So far, the court systems of the United States and Germany have gained international renown.

5. International Congress of Mathematicians

More than 6,000 masters in the academic field of mathematics from 100 countries will gather in Seoul to attend the International Congress of Mathematicians, which will be held in August.

The congress is held every four years and in the opening ceremony of this year’s event, the Fields Medal will be awarded to recognize mathematical work. The medal is given to a mathematician younger than 40 that has the potential to contribute future achievements.

BY LEE EUN-JOO [angie@joongang.co.kr]

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