Traders on farm-produce floors face difficulties complying with business regulations. General Secretary of the VN Coffee-Cocoa Association Nguyen Viet Vinh spoke to Thoi Bao Kinh Doanh (Business Times) about the issue.
Are farm produce trad-ing floors operating successfully?
There are two farm produce trading floors, one operating in HCM City and one in Buon Ma Thuot City in the Central Highland province of Dak Lak.
However, the farm produce trading floors show little effectiveness and have not met expectations. As far as I know, people think that farm produce trading floors are the same as markets, and markets always have buyers and sellers. Therefore, it is imperative to attract more businesses to join these trading floors. Efforts should be made to attract not only domestic businesses but also international businesses.
What are the shortcomings of farm produce trading floors at the moment?
Although transactions at farm produce trading floors are totally transparent with fixed prices and good quality farm produce, the floors have failed to attract farmers with enough produce to sell.
For example, the HCM City-based Can Gio farm produce trading floor had to close its doors after a few transactions because traders had too many difficulties in complying with business regulations when making transactions on the trading floor.
The Binh Phuoc-based cashew-trading floor suffered the same situation.
What are some of the solutions to this problem?
In my opinion, support from the State is imperative. For example, People's Committees have to take responsibility for investing in equipment and staff for the farm produce trading floor in Buon Ma Thuot City.
Moreover, the association also has to recommend businesses and farmers to ensure supply, quality and prices.
If these things are seriously implemented, the trading floor will earn some prestige.
Meanwhile, both trading floors in HCM City and Buon Ma Thuot City are deserted. The Buon Ma Thuot Coffee Trading Floor was opened in 2008 with modern facilities, but it only sells a few tens of tonnes of coffee daily via order matching.
Sai Gon Commercial's Goods Trading Floor opened in March 2010 but it mostly sells 100 tonnes of sugar via order matching.
Although the trading floors have support policies for traders, there are few businesses participating. Traditional trading customs have been blamed for this situation.
What does the association need to do to improve farm produce trading floors in the coming time?
Firstly, the trading floors need skilled staff. Secondly, businesses need comprehensive information on transaction regulations. Lastly, prestige must be ensured. All payments must also be carried out after goods are transacted. Some trading floors issued policies to allow traders to pay a security deposit instead of having produce on consignment.
What is the role of the association in developing a quality trading floor?
The association has participated in developing trading floors, however, the association's role is actually to make recommendations. The association is a bridge connecting traders. — VNS