31st Sea Games - Vietnam 2021 Covid-19 Pandemic
Jun 03, 2020 / 16:59

Vietnam considers reopening bars, karaoke parlors: gov’t officials

Many owners of bars and karaoke parlors have struggled with financial problems during the period of the closure, some even went bankrupt.

Minister and Chairman of the Government Office Mai Tien Dung will report to the Prime Minister for consideration and permission to reopen bars and karaoke parlors as Vietnam has gradually relaxed restrictions on services and other businesses in the new normalcy.

Many owners of bars and karaoke parlors have struggled with financial issues during the period of the closure, even some went bankrupt. Photo: Zing

At a regular government press conference on June 2, Dung said that Vietnam keeps suspending operation of bars and karaoke parlors in accordance with the prime ministerial order.

“In the spirit of supporting the full resumption of business activities, we will report to the prime minister about this proposal. Vietnam has initially controlled the pandemic but still needs to be cautious,” Dung said.

On May 7, Prime Minister Nguyen Xuan Phuc allowed the resumption of non-essential services, except for bars and karaoke parlors after the country had undergone 21 days without new Covid-19 infection in the community.

Many owners of bars and karaoke parlors have struggled with financial issues during the period of the closure, even some went bankrupt. 

During three months of the closure, two karaoke parlors in Ho Chi Minh City suffered a loss of hundreds of thousands of dollars, Ta Quang Hung, marketing director of Kingdom, told Zing. “Like any other businesses, we spend VND800 million (US$34,373) on rent and employees’ subsidy each month,” he added. “If the closure order takes too long to be removed, we would be unable to resume business even after it is lifted.”

Another karaoke parlor, B3 Karaoke Luxury in District 9, Ho Chi Minh City, also suffered heavy losses. All 30 employees of the parlor were laid off, while the expensive equipment and furniture in the parlor are deteriorating due to the long period of inactivity, according to a staff of the parlor.

To cope with the situation, ICool Karaoke in Tran Nao road, District 2, Ho Chi Minh City, had to switch to office lunch service from June 1. “We will pilot the service for a week and then continue if it is okay, even when the closure order for karaoke parlors is removed,” a staff told Zing

Each day, ICool has to refuse about 200 bookings as the business is still banned. An ICool’s representative said that they expect to be allowed to resume operation soon.