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Efforts to boost traditional markets ‘ineffective'

Update: September, 07/2013 - 10:51
Gio Hai market in central Quang Tri Province's Gio Hai commune, for example, has been built at a total cost of VND1.9 billion (US$90,000) but was still left unoccupied three years after being put into operation.— Photo congan

HA NOI (VNS)— Recent development of traditional markets in many localities has proved ineffective, causing wastefulness while failing to meet local residents' demands.

Many newly-built and costly markets have been left abandoned while customers still prefer open make-shift alternatives.

Gio Hai market in central Quang Tri Province's Gio Hai commune, for example, has been built at a total cost of VND1.9 billion (US$90,000) but was still left unoccupied three years after being put into operation.

Meanwhile, a nearby street market is always full or even overloaded with both traders and buyers.

In a similar situation, the Mekong Delta's Ben Tre Province has tens of abandoned markets.

Quoi Son market in the province's Chau Thanh District, for instance, was built one year ago at an estimated cost of VND18 billion ($857,000) but remains abandoned. It covers an area of nearly 5,000sq.m with more than 400 booths.

Dr Nguyen Minh Phong from the Ha Noi Institute for Social and Economic Development Study said there were many reasons leading to ineffective investment in building markets.

Many markets were built at locations difficult for buyers to access or far from commodities and services suppliers, so they failed to attract both traders and buyers, he said.

Besides, many markets were under construction but then were delayed as a result of capital shortage, he added.

Statistics from the Ministry of Industry and Trade revealed that the whole country upgraded nearly 3,000 markets and built more than 2,000 new markets by the end of 2012, bringing the total numbers of markets nationwide to 8,547.

Director of the Ministry's Domestic Market Department Vo Van Quyen said the development of the market system helped to promote agricultural production and boost commodity consumption.

However, market development and management has many shortcomings, including the low quality of markets and inappropriate market planning for rural areas, he stressed.

The market system failed to meet residents' real demand. Most of markets were small-scale, unequally allocated, with backward infrastructure, he said.

Around 28 per cent of the markets are make-shift ones. There are only eight large-scale wholesale markets across the nation.

To prevent wastefulness or make markets more attractive to both traders and buyers, Quyen said attention should be paid to ensuring interests for both buyers and traders as well as creating conditions for traders and small businesses to operate in the market at low cost.

Deputy Minister of Industry and Trade Ho Thi Kim Thoa said the ministry proposed localities limit the construction of new markets at inappropriate locations.

The construction or upgrade of markets must be considered carefully to meet the real demand of both traders and buyers.

The ministry proposed the State continue providing investment assistance in building markets for poor provinces with high demand for markets, particularly in remote and mountainous areas.

People's Committees of localities should have policies to encourage different economic sectors to invest in developing markets, she said. — VNS

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