Miss Korea is the oldest national Beauty Pageant in Korea, which has been held annually since 1956. It is sponsored by The Hankook Ilbo, a sister newspaper of The Korea Times. Miss Korea pageant is responsible for sending representatives from Korea to the Miss Universe, Miss Earth and Miss International pageants. Till 2010, Miss Korea also used to send representatives at Miss World pageant.
On March 16, 2011, however, the President of the Miss World Organization, Julia Morley, announced the launch of Miss World Korea pageant. Starting with Miss World 2011, Miss World Korea has been sending representatives from Korea to the Miss World pageant.
Each year out of about 50 girls competing for Miss Korea pageant, eight winners are selected by a panel of judges.
The First place winner ("Jin"(?)) is crowned the official Miss Korea and competes in Miss Universe.
There are two "Sun"(?) finalists, which are equivalent to the first runners-up, who go on to compete in Miss International or Miss Earth.
Finally, four "Mi" (?) finalist, which are equivalent to the second runners-up are chosen.
The reigning Miss Korea is Yoo Ye-bin, who was crowned Miss Korea 2013 on June 4, 2013 in Seoul. She will compete in Miss Universe 2014 pageant.
Historically, no representative from Korea has ever won any Miss Universe, Miss World, Miss Earth or Miss International title. However, Korea came close to winning international titles at several occasions, notably the following:
Miss Universe 1988: Jang Yoon-jeong (First Runner-up)
Miss World 1988: Choi Yeon-hee (First Runner-up)
Miss International 2000: Son Tae-young (First Runner-up)
Miss International 2009: Seo Eun-mi (First Runner-up)
The year 1988 holds special importance for Korea as both the representatives from Korea were crowned the first runner-up at Miss Universe and Miss World pageant respectively.
Miss Korea 2014 pageant finals are scheduled to be held on July 15, 2014.