Posted : 2013-12-31 17:32
Updated : 2013-12-31 17:32

'Bibimbap' promoted in Uzbekistan

A promotional sign for Korea's signature dish "bibimbap" is seen in a shopping district of Tashkent, the capital of Uzbekistan. The sign will be available until March. / Courtesy of Seo Kyung-duk

By Park Si-soo

A large street sign promoting Korea's signature dish "bibimbap" was installed in Tashkent, the capital of Uzbekistan, on Monday.

Six meters in width and three meters in length, the sign is seen in the city's crowded main shopping district, featuring an image of Korea's top actress Lee Young-ae and an explanation about the Korean dish written in Uzbek, according to Seo Kyung-duk, a Sungshin Women's University professor and active promoter of Korea.

The professor who has carried out similar campaigns in Manhattan and Shanghai, said that the billboard will be seen there through March. Seo is also well known for running several other promotional campaigns for Korea and its traditional cuisine through influential newspapers, such as the New York Times and the Washington Post, with the support of deep-pocketed local celebrities, including K-pop singer Kim Jang-hoon.

"The popularity of Korean culture and food in increasing in remote places around the world," Seo was quoted as saying in an interview. "Uzbekistan is home to many ethnic Koreans whose ancestors were sent to the country and its surrounding regions during the Cold War era. I believe the sign will help promote our traditional cuisine among ethnic Koreans there."

Having focused his activities on the U.S. and Europe, Seo said he will extend his efforts into the Central Asia, Middle East and Africa regions next year. As a first step, a promotional sign for Korea's traditional cuisine will be installed in Almaty, Kazakhstan's biggest city, and Cairo, Egypt's capital, early this year.

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