Fighting the effects of COVID-19: street vending is back in Beijing

The measure was taken to revive the city’s economy. Earlier this year, the Chinese Communist Party had banned street vending. Local authorities say the initiative is unrelated to a proposal by Prime Minister Li Keqiang. Increased spending and employment in the cities have encouraged the opening of kiosks and stalls.


Beijing (AsiaNews/Agencies) – Beijing’s municipal authorities have given the green light to street vending in a bid to revive an economy hit hard by the COVID-19 pandemic.

Earlier this year, before the outbreak of the global health crisis, the Chinese Communist Party had launched a campaign to limit the activity of street vendors, a position contrary to what was later advocated by Prime Minister Li Keqiang.

In June, not long after the annual meeting of China’s National People’s Congress, Li Keqiang put forward a proposal to employ millions of people made unemployed by COVID-19 in small and very small businesses such as kiosks and street stalls.

Beijing municipal leaders, who back President Xi Jinping, stated that the current initiative is temporary and unrelated to the prime minister’s proposal.

The activity of street vendors will be restricted to 60 sites in the city and at specific times. Next year it could be expanded to another 16 districts.

Analysts note that the capital’s decision was inspired by the good results, in terms of spending and employment, obtained by other cities in China that have encouraged street vending.