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China bans K-Pop and K-Dramas?

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MUMBAI: It is one of the biggest markets for south Korean dramas and pop music known to all as K-Pop. China, according to some experts, accounts for more than a few dollar billion in revenues for the K-Pop and K-Drama industry.

But now the market appears to be shutting down as the Chinese seem to be prone to restricting Korean entertainment’s access to the mainland following Seoul’s plan to deploy the US Terminal High-Altitude Areas Defense (THAAD) anti-missile system.

Reports from Chinese media state that the media industry’s watchdog State Administration of Press, Publications, Radio, Film, and Television (SAPPRFT) has issued orders to at least two stations in the province of Gaungdong they should not come with new approvals for TV programs featuring South Korean pop stars as they would not be given the approval.

According to China Film Insider, reports have appeared locally which state that Korean talent will not be allowed to appear in films, television dramas, musical concerts, variety shows, or advertisements in the immediate future. The restrictions will supposedly begin on 1 September.

Shares of many listed South Korean entertainment companies, such as SM Entertainment (Girls Generation) and YG Entertainment (Psy) have been seen an erosion in their values following the ban murmurings which have been emanating from media outlets such as People’s Daily.

An official announcement was yet to be made by the Chinese government but apparently verbal instructions had come from the regulator. How the ban will impact several China-South Korean co-productions was yet to be clarified at the time of writing, though observers expect the restrictions to apply to them too.

“Could this be an opportunity for Indians to swoop in and push Indian content in China?” asks a media observer. “Let the Indian production and broadcasting community give it a closer look see.”

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