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Night market subject to closure after 10 years operating as drinking zone in central Vietnam

Tuesday, March 16, 2021, 21:55 GMT+7
Night market subject to closure after 10 years operating as drinking zone in central Vietnam
The entrance to Song Tra Night Market in Quang Ngai City, Quang Ngai Province, Vietnam, March 15, 2021. Photo: Tran Mai / Tuoi Tre

Authorities in Quang Ngai Province, located in central Vietnam, have decided to permanently close Song Tra Night Market after nearly ten years of operation as it failed to achieve the goal of attracting tourists, but turned into a drinking hub instead.

The decision was made at a provincial meeting on Monday afternoon.

The closure, slated for April or May, received high approvals from related units, according to Ha Hoang Viet Phuong, chairman of Quang Ngai City, which is the provincial capital.

Song Tra Nigh Market was established in 2011, with 213 stalls stretching the ring dike area along the Tra Khuc River in Le Hong Phong Ward, Quang Ngai City.

It was expected to operate as a hub for recreational activities that would help boost local tourism.

However, the night market has yet to live up to that expectation over its span of nearly ten years.

A stall selling cellphone accessories at Song Tra night market in Quang Ngai City, Quang Ngai Province, Vietnam, March 15, 2021. Photo: Tran Mai / Tuoi Tre

A stall selling cellphone accessories at Song Tra Night Market in Quang Ngai City, Quang Ngai Province, Vietnam, March 15, 2021. Photo: Tran Mai / Tuoi Tre

According to Tuoi Tre (Youth) newspaper’s observation on Monday night, only 15 stalls selling clothing, footwear, and cellphone accessories were open there.

The vast majority of other stores were drinking and snack establishments.

Meanwhile, kiosks selling souvenirs, delicacies, and typical products of Quang Ngai were nowhere to be seen.

In addition, people have also complained about such issues as noise, street urination, and sidewalk encroachment at the night market.

Motorbikes are parked on the sidewalks at Song Tra night market in Quang Ngai City, Quang Ngai Province, Vietnam, March 15, 2021. Photo: Tran Mai / Tuoi Tre

Motorbikes are parked on the sidewalk at Song Tra Night Market in Quang Ngai City, Quang Ngai Province, Vietnam, March 15, 2021. Photo: Tran Mai / Tuoi Tre

Reacting to the projected closure of Song Tra, owners of the drinking establishments worried that their businesses would face difficulties.

Meanwhile, local people showed support for the shutdown of the night market.

“It’s a right decision," said a local man named Tu.

"A night market is supposed to include stalls selling local delicacies to attract visitors.

"Here, there are only drinking stores.

“Local people like me even have no space for a night walk or exercise."

Chairman Phuong said that local authorities would inform residents once the official decision on the night market’s closure is issued.

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