Similarly, some supermarkets such as Co.opmart and BigC and convenience stores, including Satrafoods, Coopfood and VinMart have yet seen as many customers going shopping as normal days.
At some traditional markets like Nhat Tao and Hoa Hung in District 10, Ban Co in District 3 and Tan Chanh Hiep in District 12, the number of customers was also much lower compared to that in the days before Tet.
As for convenience stores, goods supply has resumed to normal but just a few customers visited.
According to Ms Ngo Thi Tuoi, a trader in Tan Chanh Hiep Market in District 12, many city dwellers travelled far away during Tet holidays and have not returned home. In addition, people tend to mainly buy vegetables and fruits because they have fed up with greasy and protein-rich foods after Tet. Many stalls have not opened yet and some will close until February 19 (the first full moon in the lunar calendar).
The prices of herbs fluctuated from VND30,000 to VND32,000 per kilogram; cucumbers were sold at VND25,000-30,000 per kilogram; and red bird eye chilies cost VND25,000-30,000 per kilogram. The prices of fresh seafood, including shrimps, crabs, squids and blue crabs remained at high level compared to normal days.
Representatives of wholesale markets in the city said that the prices of goods were quite steady with the amount of goods pouring into the markets being nearly as much as normal days but purchasing power was weak and slow. At Thu Duc wholesale market, the average amount of goods was 2,500 tons per night in the past two days; and at Hoc Mon wholesale market, it was nearly 1,400 tons per night.
At wholesale markets, the price of tomatoes from Da Lat was at VND10,000 per kilogram, down VND5,000 per kilogram; cucumbers at VND25,000 per kilogram; Ly Son garlic at VND65,000 per kilogram; watermelons at VND13,000 per kilogram; mandarin oranges at VND55,000 per kilogram; Hoa Loc mangoes at VND130,000 per kilogram. The price levels at retail markets are usually higher than those of wholesale market from a few thousands Vietnamese dong to tens thousands of Vietnamese dong, depending on each product.
Mr Nguyen Tien Dung, director of Hoc Mon wholesale market, said that the amount of goods pouring to the market will gradually increase from February 10 to March 5. Total goods volume in these 24 days is expected to around 57,600 tons (an approximately 2,400 tons per night), accounting for 90 percent of that in normal days in 2018.
Noticeably, stores and restaurants in some districts have not resumed operation. For instance, stores and restaurants along Dong Bac and Duong Thi Muoi streets in District 12, Vo Van Tan Street in District 3, Tran Binh Trong and Bui Huu Nghia streets in District 5 are still close.
On the same day, Mr Le Thanh Liem, Standing Vice Chairman of the Municipal People’s Committee, visited Saigon Co.op and Satra. On behalf of city leaders, he praised the two companies for their effort in ensuring supply of goods in the price stabilization program and extending opening hours to serve rising buying demand during Tet holidays.