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Shutdown of decades-old makeshift market affects 350 traders in downtown Ho Chi Minh City

Sunday, March 17, 2019, 12:58 GMT+7
Shutdown of decades-old makeshift market affects 350 traders in downtown Ho Chi Minh City
The Co Giang makeshift market in District 1, Ho Chi Minh City on March 16, 2019. Photo: Tuoi Tre

Nearly 350 traders at a decades-old makeshift market in downtown Ho Chi Minh City are now uncertain about how to continue their livelihood after the municipal administration has recently ordered the shutdown of the market.

Located on the namesake street in the city’s downtown area, Co Giang Market is active from 5:00 am to 1:00 pm every day since 1994.

The municipal People’s Committee on Saturday issued an urgent directive regarding the cessation of all business activities at the marketplace.

Activities at the market can affect traffic on the street and result in traffic jams during rush hours.

Activities at the market can affect traffic on the street and result in traffic jams during rush hour.

A total of 349 traders have been establishing their own stalls and selling their products, which are mainly raw food, vegetables and fruits, clothes, and groceries, along the sides of the road.

The market lacks a proper waste treatment system and measures to ensure fire safety, environmental hygiene, and traffic in the neighborhood.

A clothing stall at the market

A clothing stall at the market

Each of the traders will receive support worth VND39 million (US$1,677) to VND44 million ($1,892), depending on their regular income and the amount of tax they have paid.

Those who have failed to fulfill their tax duties will receive VND29 million ($1,247).

Tran Thi Sen, 49, sells pork at the venue.

Tran Thi Sen, 49, sells pork at the venue.

During interviews with Tuoi Tre (Youth) newspaper, many traders expressed their only hope to be able to find a new place where they can continue their usual trade.

“I have sold vegetables here for 20 years. This is the only job I know I can do given my poor health conditions,” said 57-year-old Nguyen Thi Lang.

Nguyen Thi Lang, 57, said she has been selling vegetables for 20 years.

Nguyen Thi Lang, 57, says she has been selling vegetables for 20 years.

Tran Thi Huong, who owns a clothing stall, said she and her daughter have been running their business for more than a decade.

Huong wished her family could keep their business going elsewhere after the market is closed.

Meanwhile, Tran Thi Sen, a 49-year-old pork seller, said she would likely have to find a new job following the shutdown.

A man buys food at the market.

A man buys food at the market.

Pham Viet Quy and his vegetable at the makeshift market

Pham Viet Quy and his vegetables at the makeshift market

A grocery stall at the market

A grocery stall at the market

A family sets up a stall to begin selling their products.

A family sets up a stall to begin selling their products.

A resident sells food on a motorbike at the market.

A resident sells food on a motorbike at the market.

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