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"Pang Tsai" cloth hawkers to continue operations at another FEHD market tomorrow
     A spokesman for the Food and Environmental Hygiene Department (FEHD) said today (January 31) that as the Yen Chow Street Temporary Hawker Bazaar (commonly known as "Pang Tsai") has been closed today in order to release surface land for public housing development, eligible cloth hawkers who have chosen to stay in the trade will move to a nearby new FEHD venue to continue their business from tomorrow.

     The new venue provides 53 stalls and is located at blocks 1 to 3 of Tung Chau Street Temporary Market which had suspended operation and was renovated earlier. Sixteen eligible cloth hawkers attended the restricted auction of stalls which was held by the FEHD last year. All the stalls were let out. The monthly rent is from $765 and the average rent is around $1,800 per month. In addition to the restricted auction of stalls, 12 vacant stalls were let out at the open auctions for public market stalls held in early December last year. These tenants will gradually move in from May 1. The stalls that have not been leased will be put up for open auction next Tuesday (February 7).

     The new venue is only about 300 metres to 400m from the Yen Chow Street Temporary Hawker Bazaar, in close proximity to Ki Lung Street and Nam Cheong Street, where other cloth-related businesses are congregated. With the provision of facilities such as toilets, fire prevention systems and fans, plus a car park for loading and unloading goods nearby, the new venue in terms of facilities, stall sizes and surrounding facilities is better than the previous cloth bazaar, which was overcrowded.

     The FEHD spokesman said the department has provided appropriate assistance to the cloth hawkers moving to the new venue, including allowing them to move in and renovate before the commencement of the tenancy agreement. The FEHD has also earlier reminded the vendors about the arrangements of the application of extra power supply. Based on the arrangements of other markets, the FEHD provides lighting at the venue and installed an electric box which can provide extra power source for the stalls at the end of last year. The vendors could apply for extra power supply from the power company on their own if necessary.
     The Yen Chow Street Temporary Hawker Bazaar was closed at 5pm today. The spokesman stressed that the FEHD has all along been in touch with the stall operators on the arrangements for closing the Bazaar. In fact, the Bazaar was scheduled to be closed at the end of last year, however, noting that some of the stall operators would like to operate until the end of the Lunar New Year, the FEHD therefore decided to postpone the closing date to today. If tenants have practical difficulties in leaving, they will be handled by the FEHD on a discretionary basis in accordance with individual circumstances. 

     Commissioned in 1978, the Yen Chow Street Temporary Hawker Bazaar had 192 hawker stalls and sold mainly fabrics. To facilitate the development of public housing, the FEHD has arranged meetings with the cloth hawkers to follow up the exit plans since 2014. The FEHD has been presenting various proposals and discussing with the hawkers regarding the exit arrangements throughout the years, including moving to and continuing their business at stalls in a new venue or choosing to surrender their hawker licences in return for an ex gratia payment. All licensed operators of the Bazaar had already exited from 2015 to 2019. For the 49 eligible unlicensed operators of the Bazaar, according to their submissions, 33 operators have chosen to exit the Bazaar and 16 operators have chosen to move to the new venue.
Ends/Tuesday, January 31, 2023
Issued at HKT 19:25
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