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Event attracts 430,000 people including foreignersHighest amounts of export contracts signed during Int’l Horticulture Goyang Korea 2014

Event attracts 430,000 people including foreigners

Highest amounts of export contracts signed during
Int’l Horticulture Goyang Korea 2014

The International Horticulture Goyang Korea 2014, which featured new flower species and flower planting technology, took place at Ilsan Lake Park in Goyang-si, Gyeonggi-do between April 25 and May 11. The flower festival produced significant results, even though the event was underway in a subdued mood amid the Sewol-ho ferry disaster.

Organized by the Goyang International Flower Foundation and Goyang City (40 minutes from Seoul Station via public transportation), the event has been held since 1997. More than 120 companies from 35 countries and 20 national pavilions participated in the 17-day flower festival.

▲Mayor Choi Sung (fourth from left) poses with foreign participants in the 2013 Goyang City International Flower Expo.

The event highlights were the expansive display gardens located on the 37-acre site. Dozens of manicured flower beds were filled with blooming tulips, petunias and begonias (among scores of other varieties). In addition to the display gardens were five indoor exhibitions displaying both Korean and foreign flowers and plants, as well as cut flowers, succulents (cacti), bonsai, bulbs, ornamental trees and wild flowers. In total, more than 50 million flowers representing 5,000 species were presented at the festival.

Among the rare species which were on display were Rafflesia of Indonesia, the largest flower in the world which can grow to be 3 feet across and weigh up to 15 pounds, Silverswords of Hawaii, USA, giant
roses of Colombia and Rainbow Tulips of the Netherlands.
The “Garden of Hope Trees,” which was built in memory of victims of the Sewol-ho ferry disaster, attracted a steady stream of visitors as well.
The outdoor exhibition, including a large-scale flower gate in the form of a handshake, presented flower sculptures of diverse themes. Meanwhile, a number of hands-on programs, including a flower arrangement competition and a painting contest, were held to add excitement to the festival.

The event attracted roughly 430,000 visitors including those from abroad. Of note, the number of foreign visitors surged by nearly 100% over the previous year. Foreign visitors accounted for about 10% of total visitors, which contributed to enhancing the global image of Goyang City.
The flower show was not only for industry professionals but also for those who are the lovers of gardening and flowers. The participants got latest information about the tools & techniques which are being used in the field of flowering and gardening. Visitors also got the opportunity to purchase the goods and equipment of gardening.

▲Mayor Choi Sung (seated third from left) shakes hands with the mayor of a city of Chile after signing a contract to export Korean flowers to the city during the Goyang International Flower Expo.

During the event, US$34.4 millions of flower export contracts, the highest so far, were signed. Countries involved included Japan, the Netherlands, the United States and Russia. By doing do, the flower export contracts signed during the flower show exceeded US$30 million every year during the past four years. Fifteen leading horticulture buyers from Japan, the United States, Russia, Taiwan, China and other countries were invited, a move that contributed to the increased export of flowers.

▲Mayor Choi Sung (center) shakes hands with members of the Chilean delegation on the occasion of singing of Goyang’s export of roses to Chile.

According to estimates by a university research group, the International Horticulture Goyang Korea 2014 produced KRW154.6 billion of economic effects, including KRW42.4 billion in value added and KRW4.3 billion in state taxes.

이경식 기자  edt@koreapost.com

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