Huge group tour arrives from China

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Huge group tour arrives from China

About 900 employees from China’s Anya Cosmetics are visiting Korea on a group tour, Asiana Airlines said Friday.

The airline is carrying 600 members of the group to Korea.

According to the airline, it is the largest Chinese group to visit Korea since Beijing forced local travel agencies to stop offering group tours from March last year, apparently in retaliation of Korea’s decision to deploy the Terminal High Altitude Area Defense (Thaad) antimissile system.

Part of the group arrived in Korea on Friday and the rest are landing today. Staff from the Huangzhou-based cosmetics company will stay in Seoul until next Wednesday.

During their stay, they will visit major cosmetics markets in Korea clustered in Myeong-dong and Dongdaemun in central Seoul as well as Gangnam in southern Seoul.

The employees will also hold seminars on Korean and Chinese cosmetics.

“With this group tour as a start, we will put in our best efforts to reinvigorate the cultural exchange between Korea and China,” said Ahn Byeong-seok, managing director and head of the China region at Asiana.

In 2016, some 6,000 workers from Guangzhou-based cosmetics company Aurance flew into Korea for an incentive tour in March, while another 8,000 employees from Chinese health care company Nanjing Joymain Sci & Tech Development enjoyed samgyetang - Korea’s famed chicken soup - by the Han River over two days in May. Asiana transported about 6,000 of the employees of those two companies.

After those two mega-trips, Korean airlines have struggled to attract Chinese group tours due to the Thaad conflict.

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