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Exhibition World | Korea31ranking by size of Exco from its current position in the700s to the 200s.AKEI's board of directors recently approved theselection of Exco president and CEO, Mr Jae-Hyo Kim,as AKEI chairman. Mr Kim was the president for theNorth America Head Office of Korea Trade-InvestmentPromotion Agency (KOTRA), and is currently a memberof UFI board of directors. Mr Kim says he is concernedabout constant development of Korea Exhibition Industryand international cooperation, and intends to appear atmore global events to spread the word on Korea'sexpansion plans.BexcoIn Busan, Bexco has made significant contributionstoward creating new jobs and developing the region'sculture and community. However the venue is too smallto accommodate many of today's major exhibitions, andan expansion project was designed to alleviate thisproblem as well as boost Busan's development as amajor international convention city.Construction began on 9 June, 2009 and is scheduledfor completion on 30 June, 2012. It will cover124,544sqm, including a 36,443sqm annex on thecurrent Cinepark lot and an expanded auditorium. Anadditional 6,800sqm of underground and above-groundpassageways will create total expansion of 167,787sqm.The expansion will create a major exhibition centerin Busan and bring the city one step closer to achieveits goal of becoming Northeast Asia's majorconvention center.Korea has been after Japanese and Chinese businessin recent months. Following the success of road shows inShanghai, Guangzhou, Beijing and Shanghai in 2009,this year Korea targeted 11 new exhibition centres inJapan. The Japan Road Show promoted Korea'sexhibition industry to the developed and competitiveJapanese market. As well as confirming the participationof organisations to a number of Korean exhibitions, theevent also enabled Korean representatives to bond andform valuable networks that will aid in the futuredevelopment of the Korean exhibition industry. Korea returns to China Qingdao with the road show on7 September, and a spokesman for AKEI claims it hasnow become a major driving force in the development ofKorea's exhibition industry. "It is the hope of everyoneinvolved with this endeavor to increase the number ofworld-class exhibitions held in Korea, and eventuallyallow Korea to become one of the world's top 10exhibition hosts," they said.This year the country welcomes the Seventh KoreaExhibition Forum, which takes place at Coex on 22-23November organised by AKEI around the theme ofEnhancing the Value of Exhibitions. Key notes sessions will include former president oftrade fair organisation and Messe Cologne, JWC'sJochen Witt, and Skip Cox, president and CEO of USresearch company Exhibit Surveys. Elsewhere, AKEI has been boosting the industrythrough wide-ranging standardization efforts. Aspokesman said: "the exponential rise in the globalexhibition industry has not passed by Korea, and theneed for further advancement and globalization of thedomestic exhibition industry is increasingly being felt,along with the need to standardise several vital aspectsof the industry."To fulfill this need, the Ministry of Knowledge Economyand AKEI are carrying out an initiative to standardiseterminologies, statistics and documents in order toenhance the productivity and efficiency of the domesticexhibition industry as well as promote it internationally.AKEI has provided a Certified in ExhibitionManagement (CEM) programme since 2004, whicheducates around 40 people a year, while the KoreanExhibition Academy educates 70 exhibitors and 100suppliers every year. AKEI recently selected theparticipants for the second half of its 2010 OverseasExhibition Internship project.With its venues vying for superiority internally, andhealthy competition for national exhibitions underway,Korea is keen to become a more competitive globalplayer. To host international exhibitions, it has tocompete with countries not only in Asia, but Europe,America and Africa.THE MAGAZINE FOR THE GLOBAL EXHIBITION COMMUNITY WWW.EXHIBITION-WORLD.NET| September 2010|Preview In Seoul 2010The future of Korean venues?