저작권자 © 영남대학교 언론출판문화원 무단전재 및 재배포 금지
Traditional Market's Recession and VitalizationAs previously stated, the main causes for the recession of traditional markets have been changes in the distribution industry. This situation was triggered by the appearance of large retail outlets, convenience stores, and home shopping. Other big problems facing traditional markets are the cost of renovating old facilities, the perception of a lack of hygiene, and a lack of convenient facilities. Toilets and rest rooms are few and far between in the market places. At first, many merchants didn't care about these problems, so they weren't interested in the government's policies. However, the central government and local governments have given their support to the recovery of traditional markets. They established a special law dealing with traditional markets. They attempted to combine Korean traditional markets with traditional culture. The condition of market merchants has an impact on the economy, and local residents have to be concerned about this problem. The media has also shown concern about traditional markets.Effort of Whole CountryNationwide efforts are divided into two main agencies. First, the Ministry of Culture, Sports, and Tourism (MCST) started a model market business in 2008. This business model calls for “having a constant stream of callers.” The first markets to be redone based on this model were Suwon Motgol Market and Gangneung Jumunjin Market. Motgol Market operated Motgol Air by merchant DJ, so visitors can have new experiences and an interesting time. They placed a new recipe machine in their market and merchants teach the consumers how to cook a dish. Gangneung Jumunjin Market established a theater troupe, it is called the Nolraemi troupe. They opened a theater named Pacific saury. Four new markets were added to this program in 2009, and the program will continue to grow. They selected specific culture markets by region. There are six main markets and two additional markets have been selected.The other main agency is the Small & Medium Business Administration (SMBA). They support traditional markets and shopping areas in markets through the ATMA. They have two main projects these are management innovation and facilities modernization. They promote businesses and hope to increase sales. To invigorate stagnating traditional markets, SMBA decided to actively support cultural performance events to be held at the markets. The SMBA decision aims to provide a wide variety of things to see by supporting cultural and art performances, in particular, where the young generation, customers and merchants can get together. The programs are expected to contribute significantly to improving youngsters' image of traditional markets. In addition, SMBA plans to transform the six markets that have been selected as Culture & Tourism-type Markets into traditional markets to be visited by domestic and overseas tourists as well as local residents with provisions for things unique to the region to eat, do and see, linking neighborhood tourism resources. In a joint effort with the Korea Merchant Association (KMA), SMBA is promoting the conclusion of sister relationships between major enterprises/universities and 100 traditional markets nationwide this year to help the markets overcome difficulties caused by the current economic recession. SMBA issued public coupons as an Onnuri Gift. This coupon can be used all over the country. People can buy the coupon with Korean Federation of Community Credit Cooperatives (KFCC).A famous example of a Korean traditional market is Seoul Woorim Market which started environmental improvements in 2000. Through the market’s quick response to customer needs, they have been able to establish an arcade that keeps out rain and snow and they were the first market to provide shopping carts. They maintain tents, parasols, and goods piled in the street because disorderly goods or street stalls can be disturbing to people who visit a traditional market. Necessary facilities such as public toilets and parking are much more convenient. The most important characteristic change is having quick responses to customer needs and active efforts by the merchants. Why aren't people aware of these changes in traditional markets? Woorim Market has well-established facilities and service, but others don’t have this system in place. Daegu Traditional MarketDaegu has several traditional markets. Suhmun Market, which is located in Daesin-dong Jung-gu, is famous for being one of the largest markets in Korea. Suhmun Market has also established a shopping arcade. After they established the arcade, parking lot businesses developed. Between the first zone and the fourth zone they have built rest rooms, so people can rest and have a cold drink or hot tea. In June 2009 this market installed a Tourist Information Center and Customer Support Center. Suhmun Market not only attracts local visitors but also tourists from abroad, so the market’s Tourist Information Center can help them get around. The Customer Support Center has a baby-feeding room, internet room, and an automatic parking-fee calculator. They have many systems and people appreciate their effort and the improvements. However, they are missing one thing; this market was badly damaged by fire in 2005. The scene of the fire remains an empty site. To prevent this problem, they established smoke sensors and heat sensors in each sector, and connected fire fighters to all sectors. However, there are still no detailed restoration plans. In addition, they are a preparing point card system, but this system is far from being completed. These delays happen because they need the cooperation of merchants and they are still checking some critical elements. In brief, Suhmun Market has good facilities and good access for customers, and they attract foreign visitors since they installed the Tourist Information Center. They have many systems and the consumer response to the systems has been very positive. On the other hand, some systems still remain unfinished, and there are no restoration plans. Therefore we hope the areas damaged by the fire will be restored soon and there should be a steady increase in the number of visitors.Seonam Market which lies in Gamsam-dong, Dalseo-gu has been open for business since 2002. They have a modern consumption system that targets younger customers. They issue public coupons and exchange tickets. People receive a coupon when they buy more than 5000 won worth of goods. This coupon can be used like money or they can be exchanged for bonus gifts. In August, 2008, they introduced the Seonam Market Card with GB card. They discovered some famous stores and they have promoted these stores. Paldal Market is situated in Nowon-dong, Buk-gu. They wanted to increase their competitiveness, so they chose to concentrate on vegetables as their specialty. They sell vegetables wholesale from 3 in the morning to 10 a.m., and sell their goods retail after the wholesale period. This market was also selected as a health control pilot project in 2008.In contrast, some markets focus on being a traditional market through cultural projects. An example of this kind of market is Bangcheon Market. Some artists reside in empty stores in the market and they paint murals. Empty stores have been changed into exhibits. The market has also opened the Happy Photo Studio for old and multicultural families. They also hold a festival on the 4th Friday of every month. This market has increased its number of visitors, but most visitors just look around the shops without buying anything. Many merchants said we can't feel the effect of this project. The Government is promoting themselves actively to customers, but it is ineffective. They need a plan that will bring an immediate and real effect for the merchants.Seeking Cooperation of Local CompaniesDaegu City Hall has appointed traditional market shopping day on the first day of each month. Local companies have also joined in vitalizing traditional markets. They have set up sister relationships with each traditional market. For example, Yeungnam University Medical Center is partnered with Bongduck Market, Kwak's hopital with Suhmun Market, KYOBO with Bangcheon Market.Traditional markets have made great efforts to follow modern trends. The biggest problem with traditional markets is improving the external environment and sanitary conditions. They have tried to improve upon these problems, and people are becoming interested in traditional markets again. Improving awareness of merchants will establish a foothold with young people. Traditional markets have just as many accessories and clothing choices as downtown. Therefore, we must overcome misconceptions about traditional markets. The number of convenient facilities are on the rise in market places around the country. We hope traditional markets can make the necessary changes and become bustling with shoppers again.