Street Vendors to Make a Return in Shenzhen

By Billy Jiang, May 12, 2023

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In an exciting development for both residents and vendors alike, the city of Shenzhen is preparing to welcome back street vendors after a period of absence.

Following the passage of revised regulations by the Shenzhen Municipal People's Congress, the once vibrant and cherished tradition of street vendors is poised to make a triumphant comeback starting September 1.

Street vendors have long been an integral part of Shenzhen's cultural fabric, offering an array of affordable and attractive goods, while creating a bustling atmosphere that residents have come to love. 

However, concerns over traffic congestion and environmental hygiene issues prompted authorities to temporarily ban street vending.

Now, in a bid to strike a balance between preserving this cherished tradition and addressing these concerns, the city has introduced revised regulations to manage street vending in a more efficient and orderly manner.

The revised regulations were proposed during a meeting of the Standing Committee of the Shenzhen Municipal People's Congress, where they received overwhelming support and were subsequently passed. 

Under the new guidelines, local district offices will have the authority to designate specific areas as permissible for street vending. These designations will be made based on a set of well-defined principles, including convenience for the public, rational allocation of vending spaces, and effective supervision to maintain order.

With the revised regulations in place, Shenzhen aims to optimize its business environment and cater to the diverse needs of its residents. 

The new guidelines also allow compliant vendors to set up their stalls outside, bringing back the lively street scenes that were once a defining characteristic of the city. 

From savoring a hot cup of coffee on a sunny day to exploring an array of delectable street food offerings, residents and visitors will once again have the opportunity to enjoy the vibrant ambiance created by street vendors.

The decision to reintroduce street vendors is not only driven by a desire to revive a beloved cultural practice, but also to address the economic aspects of the city. By providing employment and income opportunities for many individuals, street vending has historically played a vital role in supporting local livelihoods and contributing to the city's overall economy.

The return of street vendors marks an exciting chapter in Shenzhen's urban landscape, as the city prepares to embrace the sights, sounds, and flavors that have long been associated with its vibrant street culture. 

Do you welcome the changes? What are your love and hate about street vendors? Please let us know in the comments and follow us on WeChat Official Account, ThatsGBA.

[Cover image via iShenzhen]

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