Beer is often a best seller during the Lunar New Year (Tet) festival but many retailers have been forced to lower their prices to encourage customers to buy.
Sales of beer have droppeddramatically after the Government's announced a crackdown on drink drivers.
Nguyen Van Dinh, owner of ashop selling imported wine and beer in Hang Huong Alley, Hoan Kiem district in Hanoitold Vietnam News: “This time lastyear, I did not have enough beer to sell. This year, I just sit here waitingfor orders.”
To encourage customers, Dinhknocks off 15,000 VND for every 24 pack of Saigon Special, offering at 285,000VND.
But despite reducing the prices,Dinh has not seen as many customers as he hoped. He estimates a 70 percent dropcompared to previous holiday seasons.
He says: “Last Tet, I sold morethan 1billion VND worth of beer and wine. This year, I estimate to get about 300million VND at maximum.”
Other retailers in the busystreets of To Hieu, Hoang Hoa Tham and Thai Ha experienced the same issues andhave reduced the prices of some cases of beer by up to 15,000 VND.
Nguyen Thi Nga, a shop owner inHoang Hoa Tham Street said: “Instead, many consumers buy imported, lightalcohol and local apricot wine.”
As an e-buyer on the site bachhoaxanh.com, Hoang Tuyet Loanfrom Go Vap District, HCM City, even buys cases of Saigon Special for just 239,000VND - an 80 percent drop on normal prices.
Loan tells Vietnam News: “Less people buybeer. So they must reduce the prices.”
Since January 1, any caughtdriving under the influence of alcohol on a motorbike can be fined up to 8million VND (345 USD) and banned for two years.
Car and truck drivers face upto 40 million VND fines and immediate licence suspension.
As of January 17, trafficpolice have stopped 6,279 drink drivers and collected more than 21 billion VNDin fines.
None of the biggest brewerslike Sabeco, Habeco, Heineken and Carlsberg have commented on the new law, butmany supermarkets have said sales dropped between 25 and 30 percent.
According to the Vietnam BeerAlcohol Beverage Association, Vietnamese people consumed 4.6 billion litres ofbeer last year, a 10 percent growth from 2018./. VNA