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New Policy about Street Venders in Shanghai
    2007-02-28 15:56:36     CRIENGLISH.com


Starting late this year, street venders may be able to sell goods or provide retail products along some streets in Shanghai. The Shanghai municipal government has just launched the new policy, saying as long as there's no rejection from citizens, street vendors can set up shop purely to provide residents with everyday products. That's in contrast to the previous strict regulation, this new policy received much positive responses mixed with some reserved opinions. Today Wang Jing helps break it all down with the media's views.

The China Daily quotes a Shanghai governmental official, saying it's a rational change of policy. That it's impossible to manage the large number of mobile street venders by denying them the business opportunity. Moreover, such sidewalk shops sometimes act as a necessary service to many residents'lives. In a commercializing society, it's natural for some citizens to choose to have small businesses for a better income. Plus, flea markets or household stores are common in many developed countries. The existence of such venders doesn't mean trouble for the city management. However, it's poor management itself that causes the problems.

The opinion further questions the ultimate goal of city management, asserting the purpose is not just for creating an ordered city image, but for meeting the citizens' needs. Thus it praises the new policy from the Shanghai municipal government, saying it's based on the consideration for the interests of the most city residents.

Another opinion from the Beijing News says street venders won't damage the city image. Rather they add special flavour to a city, and their existence also reflects the true life of local people. The new policy from Shanghai takes the city dwellers' will into consideration, and protects the interest of the minority. Thus it sets an example for other cities and provinces in China.
However, the Youth Times says, the new policy won't work if local residents don't let street venders to do business in their residential areas. The opinion says while citizens show compassion for the minority, they still can't bear the negative consequences like the litter and disorder that may come with the impromptu sales stands. But it does acknowledge the new policy cares for the interest of individual workers.
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