Tiếng việt | English

President of KOVECA: My Impressions of visiting Tuyen Quang, a hidden treasure of Vietnam

TQO - On September 29, 2023, I was invited by the Vietnamese Embassy in Korea and attended the Tuyen Quang Business Round Table event jointly hosted by Tuyen Quang Province, Korea Federation of Small and Medium Businesses, and the Vietnamese Embassy in Korea.

Kwon Sung-Taek, President of KOVECA.

Samcheonggak (三淸閣), where the event was held, is a very beautiful place located at the foot of Bukaksan, a famous mountain in Seoul. In the 70s, it was a place where Korean politics were discussed at night under the name of Fairy Politics. Then, in the 2000s, it was reborn as a gathering place symbolizing Korean tradition, culture, and art, and it was very impressive to me to see a Vietnamese business-related event held here.

There I first encountered Tuyen Quang. Before that, I had heard the name, but knew little information about Tuyen Quang. Having attended many Vietnamese local government-related events in Korea, I became interested in Tuyen Quang from the beginning. This is because I felt that Vietnamese Ambassador to Korea Mr. Nguyen Vu Tung, who was sitting at the same table, was taking the Tuyen Quang event very seriously, unlike other Vietnamese local government events. He did not just attend to give a customary welcome speech, but truly and affectionately actively emphasized his interest and investment in Tuyen Quang. And he stayed together until the end of the event.

I was introduced to Secretary of Tuyen Quang Mr. Chau Van Lam by the Ambassador. When I met the Secretary for the first time, I felt a familiarity with him, as if I had met him a long time ago, and he gave me a strong and inexplicable impression. The Secretary introduced Tuyen Quang’s “Thanh Tuyen” festival on September 23rd to me and asked me to attend. The ambassador who was sitting next to me also actively encouraged me to attend. This is how my relationship with Tuyen Quang began.

Kwon Sung-Taek and Secretary of the Party Committee of Tuyen Quang Province Chau Van Lam in Korea.

When I returned to the my office, I pondered deeply about whether or not I should attend. If I were to attend, my visit should be helpful to Tuyen Quang, but for that to happen, rather than going alone, I needed to be accompanied by a public relations expert who would promote Tuyen Quang to Korea and a businessman who could invest there. However, because the preparation time until September 23 was too short and Chuseok, Korea's biggest holiday, was just around the corner, it was not easy for businessmen to go on business trips abroad. In other words, it was not easy to get consent from the entrepreneurs I wanted to join.

However, after visiting Tuyen Quang first, I thought I would have many opportunities and decided to attend even if it was just me.

I visited Tuyen Quang for the first time in my life on September 23, 2023, the day of the festival. Fortunately, an executive from an energy environment company with new technology and an online public relations marketing expert accompanied us on this visit.

The first impression of Tuyen Quang was the beautiful natural scenery. And each and every official was friendly. But that was just the prologue. The Tuyen Thanh festival came as a huge shock. When I was introduced to the Tuyen Quang Festival, the first thing I said was that it was a festival recorded in Vietnam's Guinness Records, but I actually didn't know what that meant.

Thousands of tourists flock to Tuyen Quang to participate in Thanh Tuyen Festival.

I have personally planned or hosted many festivals in Korea since the early 90s, and I pride myself on being a so-called festival expert who has experienced many festivals overseas, especially in Japan, China, and the United States. The scale of the Tuyen Thanh Festival and the energy it emits are truly amazing. It was huge.

Although there were some shortcomings in the composition of content and program execution, it was clearly understood that it was a festival recorded in the Guinness Records of Vietnam in that it was a festival created and participated by the Tuyen Quang Provincial Government and local residents.

The trend of modern tourism is moving from static tourism, such as looking around fixed historical relics or beautiful natural scenery, to dynamic tourism, where tourists participate or enjoy together, such as watching festivals, concerts, cultural performances, and sports games.

In other words, festivals are one of the best tourism products. Additionally, festivals that residents create and participate in together are the best way to create regional harmony and unity. In this respect, the Tuyen Thanh Festival contained many expected effects that could be obtained through the festival. As someone who only saw the opening ceremony scene, I have limitations in evaluating the whole thing. However, looking at the opening ceremony, it is necessary to reinforce the content in order for this festival to go beyond a national festival and become a global festival, rather than just a local festival. Rather than a clumsy imitation of the West, I thought it would be better to direct the culture of 22 ethnic minorities into storytelling so that the program could be uninterrupted and lead to a single topic, with the idea that what is most Vietnamese is global.

A beautiful giant lantern in the festival.

The beautiful natural scenery of Tuyen Quang was like a jewel. In particular, the Na Hang Lake and forest in Na Hang were truly spectacular. I am concerned that the beautiful nature may be destroyed in the name of development. Like many countries in the process of industrialization, Tuyen Quang also needs to seriously consider the choice between development and preservation.

In the past, in the 60s and 70s, rural areas in Korea were very poor. It was so poor that it was called "Barley Pass" and was so poor that it described the suffering to the point of starvation because there was nothing to eat before spending the winter and harvesting the barley in early summer. At the same time, the "Saemaeul Movement" project was started with the intention of eliminating the "Borit Pass" and making rural areas better off. As a result, the rural areas were able to prosper, and they succeeded in changing Korea's rural areas to the point where the term "Borit Pass" disappeared. However, now some negative aspects of the Saemaul Movement are being raised. The most representative part of this is that only one-sided development was pursued while ignoring the unique traditions and unique landscapes of each rural area.

Of course, when there was nothing to eat right away, the economic issues of eating and living were the most important, but as time passed, one naturally had no choice but to think about cultural and historical values. It would be good for Vietnam to learn from Korea's failure rather than just ignore it. When faced with the choice between preservation and development, the principle of developing but preserving culture and tradition is essential. We hope that an exemplary example will be created from Tuyen Quang.

Poetic scenery of Na Hang hydroelectric lake.

Rural areas of the future will not simply remain places for farming. Future rural areas will become the most valuable tourism resource and a space for relaxation and traditional culture experience. In that respect, the Vietnamese countryside I saw is a treasure trove of content. I hope Tuyen Quang, a typical Vietnamese rural area, remains a clean area with future value.

The modern era is the brand era. The value of the brand directly leads to the value of the product, and the value of the region changes depending on the evaluation of the brand value. They must increase the value of Tuyen Quang by creating the best brand called Tuyen Quang.

What image immediately comes to mind when you think of Tuyen Quang in Vietnam? When many Vietnamese people mentioned Tuyen Quang, they did not hesitate to say that it is a place with many beautiful women. This is a very precious image, and the brand called Tuyen Qaung is already being created. They need to think about what to color here to make it more beautiful and better remembered. And you need to try specific tasks for the brand’s image. There is a need to brand the image of Tuyen Quang, which is associated with beautiful nature and a beautiful woman. Tuyen Quang, imaged with a new design from logo to symbol, will further increase its value.

Of course, more investment should be made in Tuyen Qaung to revitalize manufacturing and increase residents' income. They actually have enough infrastructure to make that possible. However, when considering what to prioritize and how to create more value in the future, it is necessary to find the best Tuyen Quang characteristics.

It was not easy to find everything about Tuyen Quang in the short time given to me of about 48 hours. However, it was clearly a place full of potential and clear value for the future. I will introduce Tuyen Quang to Korea with even more confidence because it is a place with beautiful people who have particularly kind and warm hearts. Thanks.

                                                   Kwon Sung-Taek, President of KOVECA

News same category