Traditional markets visited by Chairman Nguyen Thanh Phong

Chairman of HCMC People’s Committee Nguyen Thanh Phong on July 18 visited Binh Thoi market in Dist. 11, Hanh Thong Tay market in Go Vap Dist. and Nga Ba Bau market in Dist. 12.
Reporting to Mr. Nguyen Thanh Phong, Chairman of Go Vap People’s Committee Nguyen Tri Dung said when some small traders at the market tested positive for Covid-19 previously, management immediately gave citizens directions on treatment, quarantine and contact tracing.
Most traditional markets in the district are still allowed to operate if they meet the requirements. Those where positive cases were confirmed will be closed and reopened when it is safe to do so, he revealed.
At Nga Ba Bau market in Dist. 12, Acting Chairman of Dist. 12 People’s Committee Nguyen Van Duc commented that among the 10 traditional markets in the district, 7 are not allowed to operate because they could not follow social distancing rules and involved F0 cases.
Retail outlets currently operating in the district include 3 traditional markets, 5 supermarkets, 138 supermarkets of the Bach Hoa Xanh chain, and various convenience stores.
"We have daily inspections to prevent price gouging and give warnings against such behavior. We commit to strict sanctions for these things and recently fined several traders for price gouging. Currently, price control and the supply of essential goods have been stable," he said.
Regarding a pork seller who tested positive at Tan Chanh Hiep market, Chairman Nguyen Thanh Phong emphasized that Dist. 12 leaders must trace his contacts immediately. If contact tracing is not completed, having people visit the Nga Ba Bau market would cause complications.
"This location provides essential goods for the people, but they must strictly follow Covid-19 prevention protocols unless they want to be closed down," he said.
At Binh Thoi market, Dist. 11, Head of the market management board said the market reopened from July 09. Shoppers must present their shopping card and ID to enter. The marketplace allows at most 100 people at any one time.
Mr. Nguyen Ba Tung, Head of Binh Thoi Market Management Board, Dist. 11, HCMC, said that "We open from 4am to 12am. Small traders would set up shop from 4 to 5am, shopping time is from 5 to 11am, then we won’t allow any more shoppers inside from 11am, and the shops close from 11am to 12pm. The market ground is disinfected from 2 to 3pm in preparation for the next day."
Prices at this market have seen a slight increase due to scarce resources and difficulties in transport.
According to Ms. Le Thi Thanh, small trader at Binh Thoi market, Dist. 11, to ensure social distancing, small traders would use the storefront on alternating days. Prices have been raised slightly but the goods are still affordable.
Thanks to the HCMC Department of Industry and Trade, Binh Thoi Market’s management is trying out a mobile app people can use to call in and book a date they want to visit the market. The app also incorporates health declaration forms and will reject suspected Covid-19 cases. The app is expected to be put into operation from July 19.
The management board will set up time frames for 14,000 registered shoppers and send each person a reminder message 30 minutes prior to their allotted time.
After talking with the small traders, the Chairman asked the market management board to set up more partitions and fans, and take test samples from small traders randomly every 4 to 5 days.
Moreover, he instructed them to move some stalls outside of the market ground and draw chalk lines to divide the space into slots if there are too many shoppers.
The HCMC Department of Industry and Trade said there are 46 markets working and 191 temporarily closed as of July 17. The markets that have resumed operation are Binh Thoi market, Nguyen Tri Phuong market, and Phu Tho market, all selling fresh products and vegetables.

By Quang Khoa - Translated by Tan Nghia

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