Interview with the President of Jeju Ecotourism Association

We have the pleasure of interviewing mrs. Je-Ryang Ko, the chairperson of Jeju Ecotourism Association about the ecotourism development in Jeju. Thank you for your time. So, my first question is what kind of ecotourism products do you offer to tourists in Jeju. We create programs by making connections between ecosystem, history, culture, and villages in Jeju Island. And why have local people in Jeju decided to develop ecotourism. Well, because tourism in Jeju Island has gone through a development-oriented process, local people have experienced for a long time that they are isolated and natural environment is damaged So we started focusing on ecotourism in a way that local residents can protect natural environment and be actively involved in tourism development. And what kind of benefits and disadvantages of ecotourism can you see As ecotourism is developed, it is true that natural environment is protected effectively. In tourism, huge capital used to take a lot of profit. But we also find a substantial effect of boosting local economy by providing direct economic benefits to local residents. I would say it is not a negative aspect but rather a challenge for us. Ecotourism is not rapidly growing. It grows slowly. Also, because it does not bring a large amount of profit, not many people participate in ecotourism So we are facing a challenge to find the way how to encourage more people to be involved in ecotourism. Thank you very much for your time. Thank you.

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