K-pop septet BTS has been nominated for the Order of Cultural Merit, for the first time as an idol group.
The Ministry of Culture, Sports and Tourism has recently announced that BTS is one of 12 nominees for the Order of Cultural Merit this year, which will be given out at the '2018 Korean Popular Culture & Arts Awards'.
The Order of Cultural Merit has five grades (Geumgwan, Eungwan, Bogwan, Okgwan and Hwagwan), and is awarded by the President of South Korea for the person who has rendered "outstanding meritorious services in the fields of culture and art in the interest of promoting the national culture and national development."
BTS is the youngest figure and also the first-ever idol act in the awards' history to be nominated.
The nomination announcement note BTS' achievements both in Korea and in overseas market including Japan and the United States, and their contribution to the spread of Hallyu (the Korean Wave).
Previously as a K-pop act, PSY received a 4th grade Okgwan Order of Cultural Merit in 2012 following the achievements of his song 'Gangnam Style' reaching No. 2 on Billboard's Hot 100 chart.
The winners of the '2018 Korean Popular Culture & Arts Awards' will be announced in October, and the awards ceremony is planned for October 31.
Meanwhile, BTS is scheduled to make its comeback on August 24 with the repackaged album 'LOVE YOURSELF 結 Answer'.
(Credit= Ministry of Culture, Sports and Tourism, Ministry of the Interior and Safety, Big Hit Entertainment)