Hard economic times are still hitting the market sector and Homa Bay town traders have not been spared from the upscale of trade commodities.
The traders were hopeful that the opening of the multimillion modern market would improve trade as well as the lives of the town’s residents.
However, the increase in prices of commodities has challenged the economic growth of the traders leaving them with little profit from every commodity they sell.
Homa Bay Giant Traders Association’s Secretary General Simon Kwach said that the new market has slightly improved trade in the town and was hopeful that circulation of money would increase too.
“Generally, trade is slowly picking up and traders are still trying to settle in the new market. I believe that in the coming few months, trade will fully pick up because buyers will again be familiarized with the market environment and things will go back to the way they were prior to the relocation where the traders had faithful customers of their own,” he said.
The traders however said despite having a good market, increase in commodity prices has paralyzed the economy and they barely make sales.
Phoebe Achieng’, a grocer at the modern market, said that her business has not picked up since the move and that she earns little profit compared to before the relocation.
“The facility is good and we appreciate it, although since I moved in, I have encountered a lot of challenges. I have lost most of my customers because they do not know where to find me,” Achieng said.
Her sentiments were echoed by another vendor James Omwoyo who also claimed that business has been down since the relocation which displaced him.
He said he earns very little hence purchasing new stock has been a challenge and he is hoping that the new government will see to the reduction of prices of commodities.
“Business has been down, I have been displaced and my customers find it hard to locate me. On the other hand, I find it hard to add new stock since I get nothing much from my daily sales,” he reiterated.
Rhoda Atieno, a shopkeeper however differed with them saying that the new market has changed her life by giving her a space and opportunity to do business.
“I used to stay home but when the market was launched, I got a stall and I started my business. The economy is high but at least my life has changed,” Atieno said.
The facility has created a favourable environment to the traders from proper shelter to a spacious cleaner environment for trade and the traders are hopeful that there will be change in the next few months where trade will improve.