As poor ticket sales continue to plague the Pyeongchang 2018 winter Olympic Games, South Korean banks will buy 1bn (£650,000/$880,000) won worth of tickets.

With only 124,000 of the 750,000 domestic tickets being sold so far, the banking federation said it hopes to boost sales with only five months to go.

The launch of online ticketing is expected to improve sales, with only 30 per cent, or 315,000, of the 1.07 million total target sold so far.

The Korea Federation of Banks said on Tuesday it would spend 1bn won on tickets as part of its “social responsibility,” as well as donating 20bn won to the Pyeongchang 2018 organising committee.

“Buying tickets was considered one of the ways to support the Olympic Games considering the recent slow ticket sales,” federation official Shon Kyung-ae told Reuters. “We have decided to buy 1bn won worth of tickets.”

Organisers aim to raise 174.6bn won from ticket sales, though they have faced difficulties raising awareness in the global community, as well as competing with diplomatic, security and political setbacks.

“As part of our social responsibility efforts, the federation has decided to support the 2018 Pyeongchang Olympic Games, which will be an opportunity to improve the country’s global image,” the federation said in a news release.

Earlier this month it was reported that sales for the February event were flagging, with South Koreans having bought fewer than 10 per cent of the 750,000 domestic tickets available. This led to organisers being urged to boost promotion and ticket sales by Olympic chiefs.