Wholesale vendors unnerved by market restrictions

By Thi Ha   September 22, 2021 | 06:17 pm GMT+7
Wholesale vendors unnerved by market restrictions
Workers unload goods from a truck at Hoc Mon wholesale market in Ho Chi Minh City, Sept. 21. Photo by VnExpress/Quynh Tran
The amount of goods arriving at the three wholesale markets in Ho Chi Minh City is at a record low with vendors discouraged by stringent Covid-19 regulations.

Hoc Mon market on Tuesday received five tonnes of goods, the lowest amount ever.

The market reopened Monday with 132 tonnes but only 22 were distributed to other markets, said its director Nguyen Tien Dung.

Thu Duc market received 74 tonnes of fruits on Sep. 17, the first day it reopened, and the figure dropped to 71 tonnes Tuesday. No vegetables have arrived as vendors are reluctant to restart trading.

Binh Dien market, the earliest of the three to reopen on Sep. 7, received around 91.5 tonnes of goods Tuesday, while the figure was 100 tonnes two weeks earlier.

These figures are unusually low against the pre-pandemic level of 7,000-10,000 tonnes of meat, fruits and vegetables arriving at all three markets daily.

A spokesperson for Thu Duc market said vendors are reluctant to trade as they are required to test Covid negative every three days.

Rules allowing only trucks to enter the market along with vehicle and personnel registration have further discouraged them, he added.

Dung of Hoc Mon said the cost of testing is acting as a burden to vendors.

"We have tried to encourage them but not many are willing to start trading again."

Many vendors are selling their goods alongside national highways to avoid complicated market regulations, he added.

Some have also become familiar with selling online, he said.

Hanh, a vendor in Hoc Mon, said selling directly to distributors is quicker and that she does not yet have intentions to return to the market.

"Maybe we’ll come back when everything reopens and there are less restrictions."

The three wholesale markets reopened this month after being mostly closed since July due to rising number of Covid-19 infections in HCMC.

These markets are the main hubs for trading meat and vegetables in the city.

 
 
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