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Kim Ja-in wins silver medal at IFSC Climbing World Cup

Kim Ja-in won a silver medal in women’s lead at the IFSC Climbing World Cup 2017 in Wujiang, China, on Sunday.

After finishing tied for first by completing two routes in the qualification, Kim recorded 41+ in the semi-finals to advance to the finals in third place. Then, in the finals, Kim easily passed the 33rd-34th hold but failed to take the last hold to finish second, behind Janja Garnbret of Slovenia.

By winning her fifth medal of the season, Kim maintains her World Cup ranking for the season, second. Prior to the event, Kim won a gold medal at the fourth World Cup race in Arco, Italy in August.

In 2014, Kim became the first Korean climber to win the IFSC World Championship in women’s lead. Not only that, Kim holds the record in the most number of wins, at 26, in the IFSC World Cup women’s lead. Lead climbing requires the climbers to climb a 15-meter (49-foot) wall in six to eight minutes, requiring them to reach the highest hold possible in the required time.

Starting from Saturday, Kim will be competing in the seventh World Cup event in Xiamen, China.



PyeongChang expected to revitalize tourism in Korea

The 2018 PyeongChang Winter Olympics slated for February next year is anticipated to revitalize tourism in Korea, which was recently struck by a falling number of Chinese visitors, industry watchers said Friday.

According to data compiled by the Korea Culture and Tourism Institute, next year’s Winter Olympics to be hosted in Pyeongchang, 180 kilometers (112 miles) east of Seoul, is expected to generate a production inducement effect of 668.4 billion won ($582.9 million) with the employment of 9,000, lending support to various sectors in the tourism industry.

The organizing committee of the 2018 PyeongChang Winter Olympics and Paralympics expects some 83,000 foreign tourists to visit Korea to enjoy the games. The number of athletes, reporters and other Olympics officials are also estimated at 75,000, it added.

Industry watchers added the Winter Olympics is also anticipated to revitalize the Korean tourism industry amid the falling number of Chinese visitors amid a diplomatic row.

Since earlier this year, the Chinese government has banned tour agencies from selling package tours to Korea, expressing opposition against Seoul’s decision to deploy an advanced U.S. missile defense system in the country.

Of the 17.2 million foreign tourists who visited Korea last year, Chinese travelers accounted for 8.06 million, or 46.8 percent.

The number of Chinese visitors over the January-August period this year, however, came to only 2.87 million.

Other experts said the Olympics will only have a short-term effect on local tourism unless Beijing fully lifts its retaliation against Seoul, and that Korea should seek to diversify its portfolio in line with the event.

While the local tourism industry has been relying heavily on visitors from Asian countries, experts said the event will help in Korea to host more tourists from other regions as well.

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