Vung Tau citizens in uproar against new ban on beach food stalls

By Xuan Thang, Vuong Anh   April 26, 2016 | 01:35 am PT
Vung Tau citizens in uproar against new ban on beach food stalls
Hundreds of people prevented authorities in Vung Tau from removing vendors and stalls along the beach. : Xuan Thang
Vung Tau city – a popular seaside resort in Vietnam – has started to enforce a new law banning commercial activities along its beaches, but has faced fierce opposition from locals.

Hundreds of people protesed in Vung Tau as the city’s police and security forces started to remove food vendors and stalls from the beach area this morning.

They lined up in rows in front of police vehicles and stood on furniture and equipment to prevent them from being moved.

The protesters said they have being doing business for dozens of years on the beach, and it's their main source of income. “The city’s ban will affect my family,” a local said.

In response to the overwhelming reaction from the people, authorities said they have tried to convince the public citizens that the ban is part of the city’s plan to boost tourism.

Vung Tau's People’s Committee had ordered locals to move their property and equipment from the beach area before April 26 when the law came into effect. The businesses are to be relocated in Vung Tau Tourism Market.

Truong Thi Huong, deputy chairman of the city's People’s Committee, said that authorities will focus on convincing locals to move their businesses to the market.

“By noon tomorrow (April 27), the city will complete the beach cleanup. Anyone who still opposes the authorities will be punished," Huong said.


Equipment used for commercial activities on Vung Tau's beach. Photo by Xuan Thang.

One official from Vung Tau said that people who conduct commercial activities by the beach are violating the law and do not have business licenses.

Beside the commercial ban, Vung Tau will launch a campaign to urge tourists not to bring alcoholic drinks to the beach, hold parties or litter in public areas.

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