Banteay Srei district authorities in Siem Reap province have organised Phsar Kromoun, or improvised market, for vendors to sell necessities to the community amid the temporary closure of the Banteay Srei market where 60 vendors recently tested positive for Covid-19.

District governor Khim Finan said the makeshift market will serve over 10,000 people living in Khnar Sandai commune.

“All vendors have already been tested in advance, they are wearing masks and face shields, keeping a safe distance from each other in one stall to another and everyone must wear identification. This is to ensure that this temporary market does not pose the same risks to the community that the regular market did and life can continue normally,” he said.

He said essential businesses such as those selling basic produce and groceries like fish, vegetables or meat cannot be closed down because they are necessary for feeding the people of the district as otherwise they will be forced to travel 20 or 30km to buy food.

The market will also sustain the livelihoods of some of the vendors from the original market who would otherwise be left with no income whatsoever due to the closure.

Finan said there are only 20 stalls available and the vendors are only allowed to sell in the morning. The makeshift market is scheduled to last for two weeks but could be extended depending on the Covid-19 situation.

The district on July 21 set up a similar improvised market for Preah Dak commune.