Mini Home Markets Gaining Popularity

first_img By Daily NK – 2015.01.23 5:40pm News Facebook Twitter Mini Home Markets Gaining Popularity US dollar and Chinese reminbi plummet against North Korean won once again RELATED ARTICLESMORE FROM AUTHOR NewsEconomy News center_img SHARE North Korea Market Price Update: June 8, 2021 (Rice and USD Exchange Rate Only) News Proposal to shift “general markets” to “specialized markets” finds little support among N. Korean leaders More residents are enjoying the convenienceof using home-run stalls selling simple items, compared to conventionalmarketplaces that come with restrictions in operating hours, Daily NK haslearned. “You can sell and buy goods from theseresidential stalls as long as you have an established level of trust with theowner,” a source based in South Pyongan Province toldthe Daily NK on Thursday. “More people are convertingrooms in their homes and selling goods day and night.” This foundation of trust is bolstered by three chief pillars: the customer has evidence of a steady source of revenue, and is neither an undercover official looking to crackdown on the operations, or aswindler hoping to cut and run with the goods. Passing muster can take time and requires a number of others within the right circles for validation.According to the source, thesehome-operated stalls started popping up in the 1990s, mostly around schools tosell snacks to students. Starting a few years ago, more people have beenconverting or extending parts of their homes and selling electronics–namelytelevisions, refrigerators, and washing machines–and food in bulk. Every aspect of operations–from investment to distribution and sales–involving these homes stalls are run by the families inhabiting the premises, which enables the unit to function like a well-oiled company, with workers picking up shifts around the clock. “Even if you don’t have much interms of assets, as long as you open shop at home, you can secure products tosell on credit from wholesalers and put things on tabs for people as well. Forthis reason these places are referred to as ‘creditstalls,’” the source explained, adding that the system is as beneficial to customers as it is to owners.In contrast to the markets, one of thegreatest merits of these stalls is the freedom they offer to dodge curfewsenforced during farming mobilization, where vendors see their retail timecurtailed to a few hours a day– if any. Even better is the fact that thesehome stalls, not yet on the radar for crackdowns, easily evade surveillance. “There’s no fee for the stall like atmarkets, and vendors don’t need to leave products withsecurity at the market or bring them home, so all in all it’s very convenient,” she asserted. In North Korea, official market operations typically involve a stand approximately 50-60cm in width, procured by vendors by paying a fee to themanagement office. The street stalls are larger, about 1.5-2m wide, and owners contribute 10percent of their sales to the city or county service management office in order to sell there. State-run shops are assigned to individuals who pay rent to conduct wholesale or retail operations. Conveniently located on the main roads leading to the markets, these home shops see increasingly more business for those looking for an alternative. “Home stalls are right where people live,so word of mouth travels and people in the neighborhood are able to go buythings they need regardless of what time it is,” thesource said, adding that sellers even offer delivery services for big purchases.These residential shops also offer a safer option for those looking to keep their affluence under wraps. “For Party cadres and the donju [new affluentmiddle class] who have accumulated assets illegally, their amount of spendingis more or less exposed if they buy products at the market and at generalshops. But with home-run stalls that’s not the case, sothey don’t have to worry,” thesource said.As with all things, this newconvenience comes with drawbacks. Offering one such caveat in this case, shepointed out, “You may be able to put things on a tab,but you can’t haggle.” AvatarDaily NKQuestions or comments about this article? Contact us at [email protected] last_img read more