Enterprises minimize costs to support consumers amid price hikes
Customers buy subsidized eggs at a supermarket in Go Vap District in HCMC. (Photo: SGGP)
Markets, supermarkets launch tricks to attract customers
“Twenty duck eggs and a bottle of soft drink total VND100,000. This pack of milk candy is a gift to your daughter," said Le Thi Thuy, 69, a grocery store owner on Nguyen Dinh Chieu Street, District 3, to a customer. Nguyen Thi Nam, a regular customer of Thuy, said that every time she buys goods there, she is always given a small pack of candy, sometimes an orange, or a few chili peppers. The value of the gift is not high, but the customer feels happy.
Some customers buy goods at Ben Thanh Market in District 1, Ho Thi Ky and Hoa Hung markets in District 10, and Tan Chanh Hiep Market in District 12 shared that, after the Covid-19 pandemic, the sales style of small traders has changed positively. It is also one of the tricks to attract customers and boost purchasing power when consumers tend to tighten spending than before.
At present, after a month of the concentrated promotion program, whose phase 1 ended on July 15, many supermarkets said that they would continue to extend promotions and support customers to buy at a discount from 10 percent to 50 percent, and some places even discount up to 100 percent.
At Co.opmart, MM Mega Market, BigC & Go!, and GigaMall, many big promotions have been launched continuously for vegetables, fruits, fashion clothing, poultry meat, and seafood. Representatives of these supermarkets said that the purchasing power improved better than normal days, increasing by about 10-15 percent.
Besides the group of food and drink products at traditional markets and supermarkets, some electronic, electric, and cosmetic products in many stores have also launched several promotional policies, attracting customers to their stores this summer.
Sharing profits, stabilizing the market
Mr. Lam Tuan Ngoc, Director of Tuan Ngoc Agricultural Cooperative in Thu Duc City, HCMC, said that the cooperative tried to balance spending, not increase selling prices, to support customers. Therefore, the cooperative still has a stable revenue. To do this, the cooperative signed a contract to buy fertilizer early in the off-peak season to get a good price, compensate for the loss of freight when gasoline price is high to receive more orders, and actively increase production to supply large orders. Especially, the cooperative has also changed technology to save fertilizer, water, and electricity while maintaining the same product quality.
Similarly, Mr. Truong Chi Thien, General Director of Vinh Thanh Dat Food Joint Stock Company, said that although at the moment, the price of price-stabilized eggs suffers a loss of 10-15 percent compared to the egg price on the market, the company still finds ways to have stable prices, and the industry and trade regulates egg prices accordingly. It is estimated that, on average, the company supplies the HCMC market with about 400,000 eggs per day. Currently, the price-stabilized poultry egg price is lower than the market, so there is a situation where traders collect price-stabilized goods to sell for a profit. In theory, the company only needs to provide enough the volume of goods it committed to the industry and trade, but the company did not only do that. There were times when this item was in short supply, and the company had to buy eggs from other suppliers to stabilize the price to support consumers.
A representative of the HCMC Department of Industry and Trade said that the department does not have a separate policy on prices but only ensures the supply and demand of goods, mobilizes enterprises to stabilize the market, and apply preferential discounts to customers. At the same time, the department also encourages enterprises to minimize costs to reduce the pressure of increasing the selling prices and sell goods at the appropriate prices registered with the market stabilization program. Although the pressure of price hikes is fairly great, thanks to the joint effort to regulate prices and support consumers of many enterprises, it has helped to cool down the price somewhat.
Discount on bus tickets from 10-15 percent
A representative of the Mien Tay Bus Station said that after the price of gasoline decreased, Kumho Samco Buslines Transport Company informed the bus station that it would reduce the fare by 10-15 percent compared to the current level. Some contract transport enterprises have reduced prices by 10 percent because they operate mainly based on the agreement between the passenger and the transporter, so it is easy to adjust the price.
Teams to check prices and services established
In the Mekong Delta provinces, rural areas seem to be less affected by price because food and foodstuffs are close to the place of production, with little transportation fees. At Vinh Thuan Market in Vinh Thuan District in Kien Giang Province, the prices of meat, fish, and vegetables edged up slightly or did not increase. Tran Thi Thuy, a poultry meat seller at Vinh Thuan Market, said that if she raised the price, she would lose customers. In the district market, sellers always have regular customers, so she has to earn little profits or sometimes take a break-even to retain their customers. Gasoline price goes up, and then it must come down. When it keeps going up and does not decrease, she would ask customers to let her raise the price a little bit.
Breakfast dishes, such as rice noodles, Vietnamese thick noodles soup, and broken rice, in Long Xuyen City in An Giang Province; Cao Lanh, and Sa Dec cities in Dong Thap Province have not seen an increase in the price, only fluctuating around VND30,000-VND35,000. Sau Thu, who sells broken rice and Vietnamese thick noodle soup in Long Xuyen City, said it was difficult not to increase the price. However, when sellers raised their prices, customers would complain. Increasing the price by a few thousand Vietnamese dongs would not solve anything, so she would rather wait for the Government to take measures to reduce petrol prices. “My selling prices are very close to the cost prices. My suppliers also complained, but we told each other to try our best to wait for the fuel prices to cool down. Working in the service industry must bear such risks,” Thu said.
At tourist sites in Ha Tien and Phu Quoc cities in Kien Giang Province, the authorities have quickly set up teams to check market prices and services. Every day, these teams patrol around the markets and stalls to survey the prices, or when tourists and consumers complain about unreasonable prices, they will find out the reason immediately. Thanks to that, although the price of petrol has increased, in general, the service and goods market is still within tolerance.
By staff writers – Translated by Thanh Nha