Beijing's Biggest Market About to get Even Bigger
Covering 1,520 acres and employing a workforce of almost 2,000, Xinfadi wholesale market in southwest Beijing is said to be one of the largest in the world. And it's about to get even bigger with the addition of a new international section. Dominic Swire visited the bustling stalls to bring us this report.
With almost 5,000 stalls open 24 hours a day and up to 80,000 visitors every day of the year, Xinfadi is one of the key trading areas in Beijing. The market supplies over 70 percent of the city's demand for fruit and vegetables.
Dealers come to Xinfadi from the length and breadth of the country to trade a wide variety of edible products including meat, seafood, seeds and tea.
Gai Chenggui from Shijiazhuang city in Hebei province is one of the market's many customers. He says it's Xinfadi's size and low prices that attracted him.
"This market is the biggest I've been to. There is not only more trade here than in other markets, the range of goods is also superior. Here I can buy many products at great prices."
Soon the range of products available at the market will be even greater. The organisation is currently in the process of constructing an international section that will serve traders from a number of countries including the United States, Japan, Germany, South Korea and New Zealand.
Yang Pan is one of the management team at Xinfadi market. He says one of the main benefits of the new international section will be lower prices.
"The imported fruits we sell now are all sent up from Guangzhou, which obviously involves logistics costs. The new international section will mean goods can be sent to Beijing directly from abroad, so our customers can appreciate even lower prices."
It's hoped the increased international trade will not only offer customers better quality produce but also raise the quality of domestic products through increased competition.
"Eventually we hope to import high-quality products to Beijing for auction and special promotions. This way, we can offer international-standard products and provide positive competition for China's agricultural sector."
Meanwhile work continues outside the newly constructed long, shiny building that will house Xinfadi's international section, which is expected to open in early July. Customers and traders alike will be waiting with baited breath.
For CRI, I'm Dominic Swire