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KOCIS to close after 50 years; culture ministry to absorb functions

After more than five decades, the Korean Culture and Information Service (KOCIS), a government agency under the culture ministry responsible for promoting Korea abroad, will be shutting down as part of a restructuring plan. The Ministry of Culture, Sports and Tourism will establish a new office within the ministry dedicated to overseeing its overseas promotion policy. The envisioned closure was unveiled in a revision proposal for the enforcement regulations governing the status of the culture ministry and its affiliate bodies, jointly announced by the culture and interior ministries Wednesday. In South Korea, any changes to enforcement regulations do not require a parliamentary approval to come into force. The culture ministry says the closure is part of efforts to strengthen its existing role in coordinating overseas promotion by integrating functions currently handled by the KOCIS. Founded in 1971 as the ministry's arm for overseas promotion, the KOCIS celebrated its 50th anniversary in 2021. It curren tly runs 35 Korean cultural centers in 30 countries around the world and an online news service, Korea.net, to enhance the world's awareness of Korean culture and foster international exchanges. The culture ministry also has two divisions tasked with relevant responsibilities. Source: Yonhap News Agency