|Hang Da shopping centre, converted from a traditional market, has failed to attract customers. The city intends to spend US$25 billion from foreign, domestic and Government capital to build 988 supermarkets and 64 shopping centres. — Vietnamnet Photo
HA NOI (VNS)— A retail network consisting of 988 supermarkets and 64 shopping centres will be built in the capital city by 2020 to serve the needs of its citizens.
Tran Thi Phuong Lan, vice director of the city's Department of Industry and Trade, said that under its trade development programme, the city would be spending VND521 trillion (US$24.58 billion) from foreign, domestic and government capital to build the network.
Lan revealed that the basements and ground floors of existing buildings could be converted into trade centres and traditional markets could be developed into shopping centres for this purpose. Supermarkets and shopping centres need not be built on entirely new plots of land in the city's interior, according to Lan.
The project is part of the city's socio-economic development plan for 2020 to 2030. Population density and the distance between retailers will determine the scale of the network, and the department will reassess the city's infrastructure after two years of implementation to have a clearer overview of future development needs.
According to the industry and trade official, the city's population is expected to reach 9.4 million with a per capita income of $7,500 by 2020 and $17,000 by 2030, and the total retail value of goods and services in the city is estimated to be $45.6 billion by 2020.
In the next 10 years, the city will expand its wholesale and retail system with 864 supermarkets and 36 shopping centers.
She revealed that the retail network plan was based on estimated demand from residents and visitors and the general development plan for the city.
At present, the capital city has 135 supermarkets and 28 trading centres. Investors of new urban areas such as Linh Dam, Trung Hoa-Nhan Chinh and My Dinh II have co-operated with retailers in opening supermarkets in these areas.
However, city residents have been complaining about expensive prices, poor products and old display methods, reports the Dan tri online newspaper.
"Supermarkets in urban areas are expensive and their goods lack variety and diversity. Also, the method of selling and payment remains old and outmoded," said a resident of the My Dinh II urban area in Nam Tu Liem District.
"It is just convenient, but people prefer to shop either in large supermarkets with a variety of goods at reasonable prices, or in traditional markets that offer fresh food, including special kinds of meat and fish," the resident added.
Meanwhile, a number of traditional markets have been converted into shopping centres with supermarkets but have failed to attracted consumers. Lan said authorities had yet to shut down sidewalk vending stalls and flea markets on the streets which consumers find more convenient for shopping. — VNS