A NEW and modern wholesale market is expected to be completed in Kuala Lumpur by the end of next year.
Kuala Lumpur City Hall (DBKL) will decide on the finer details for the wholesale market by year end.
Federal Territories Minister Tan Sri Annuar Musa said the local authority would consider several suggestions and hoped to find other ways to finance the project instead of relying on government funds.
“We need a new modern wholesale market that is not labour intensive and relies on mechanisation, ” he said without revealing the location.
The market, he said, must include a spacious trading area for a greater variety of goods and not be confined to the sale of fruits, vegetables and fish.
“Perhaps the new market can also be fitted with green technology cleaning systems as well as efficient cold rooms, ” he said after visiting the Pasar Borong Kuala Lumpur in Jalan Ipoh to check on the progress of its transformation project.
Annuar also presented prizes to winners of a mural competition titled “Sayangi Pasar Borong Kita”, which was organised by DBKL to beautify the market.
Speaking on the current wholesale market, he said it would remain and be upgraded.
The Jalan Ipoh wholesale market has been undergoing transformation for a few months, primarily aimed at getting rid of foreign traders and workers as well as to clean-up its image while giving it a brighter appeal.
Annuar said 105 closed-circuit television cameras (CCTVs) were being installed.
Of the number, four CCTVs installed around the market’s perimeters will have facial recognition features.
The minister said workers were required to use uniforms to identify them based on their area of trade.
“However, there are still illegal immigrants and refugees trading outside the market and this needs to be checked.
“I have also spoken with the mayor on the need to spruce up the market and repaint the kerbs as well as fix broken drains, ” he added.
Also present were Federal Territories Ministry secretary-general Datuk Rosida Jaafar, Kuala Lumpur mayor Datuk Mahadi Che Ngah and DBKL executive director Datuk Ibrahim Yusoff.
“A workers hostel with a capacity of 224 people in 112 rooms is almost complete.
“It is within walking distance and will be rented out at RM150 per month.
“Priority will be given to those renting at other places and who come from far away, ” he said, adding that the hostel was being built to encourage locals to take up jobs at the wholesale market.
Annuar Musa said market workers could earn up to RM2,000 and hoped that the cheap accommodation would encourage locals to work there.
Other efforts include introducing passes and access cards for traders, workers and buyers; upgrading entrance and exit posts; installing fences; sealing all rat holes and creating more motorcycle bays.
On a separate matter of hostels for foreign employees, the minister said DBKL and Putrajaya Corporation would study the proposal to see its viability.
Despite a guideline for employers to provide proper accommodation for foreign workers, he said many did not adhere to the ruling.
As a result, workers were living in different places and often overstayed after their contracts expired.
“When foreign workers live in different areas, it becomes difficult to take enforcement action.
“They also live in overcrowded flats, which can contribute to the spread of Covid-19, ” he pointed out.
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