Mong Cai city consists of 16 wards and communes namely Hoa Lạc, Ka Long, Ninh Duong, Tra Co, Tran Phu, Hai Son, Binh Ngoc, Hai Xuan, Hai Hoa, Vạn Ninh, Hai Yen, Hai Dong, Hai Tien, Quang Nghia, Vinh Thuc, Vinh Trung. Viet people (Kinh) make up more than 90% of the total population while people of other ethnic groups namely Dao, Hoa, etc. account for 10%.
The economy structure here is commerce-tourism-fishery. Three areas (commerce area, tourism area and industry area) will be set up according to the overall plan. Mong Cai border gate appears to be a really convenient trading place between Vietnam and China with lots of bustling activities all day and night. The annual number of vistors to Mong Cai is 100 times more than that of its habitants which brings this city a lot of profit.
The market is comprised of three zones; all situated in the sub-district of Hoa Lac, 1 km from the Bac Luan border crossing. There are thousands of households here, almost all of which are bilingual in Chinese and Vietnamese.
Goods traded in the market and exchanged across the border are varied. Chinese goods imported into Vietnam include: speciality fabrics, ready-made dresses, mosquito nets, shoes, sandals, electronics, toys, candies and fruit. Vietnamese goods exported to China are mainly seafood products and agricultural foodstuffs such as tea, coffee and sesame.
Also in the market are traditional northern medicinal ingredient stalls, with Chinese physicians feeling your pulse and writing out prescriptions for the correct medicine.
|The Mong Cai Border Market . Photo. vovworld.vn|
Previously, Mong Cai was the provincial capital of the former Hai Ninh Province. Following border hostilities between Vietnam and China on February 1979, the township was destroyed, seeing the loss of many economic and cultural traits; in particular the ancient quarter along the Ka Long River. Since 1991, following the betterment of relationships between the two countries, trade exchange at the border has increased substantially.
After shopping, tourists can enjoy Vietnamese and Chinese dishes. Many famous Chinese restaurants offer dishes and wines from famous Mao Dai wine to normal wines: Than Phụ tuu, Khong Phụ Tuu, Ngu luong dich... Chinese specialities: Beijing roasted duck, cay te soya cheese.