Cai Rang floating market in Can Tho city. (Source: VNA)

Can Tho (VNA) - The People's Committee of Can Tho city has approved a project to preserve the Cai Rang floating market in Cai Rang district.

Submitted by the district's People's Committee, the project aims to restore and upgrade the market to meet requirements of the sellers and attract more visitors.

According to Ngo Anh Tin, Vice Chairman of the district's People's Committee, the district will rearrange the mooring system for boats at the market. It will build a stop station, floating restaurant and public restrooms for tourists as well.

The city has also established a steering board to support preservation works. The board has 23 members led by Le Van Tam, Vice Chairman of the People's Committee.

It is in charge of working with the Cai Rang District's Culture and Information Office and its Tourism Centre to implement the project.

"The project is necessary in maintaining and developing the market as the city's most popular destination," Tam said, adding that for years local authorities have yet to issue official articles on managing and preserving the market.

He also said the project would contribute to raise awareness of boat traders and local residents for environmental protection, food hygiene and safety and social security at the market.

The project is expected to begin in early 2016.

According to Tin, the Cai Rang Floating Market first appeared 100 years ago, becoming a destination for consumer agricultural products in the Mekong Delta region.

Apart from selling fruits and vegetables from the district, it also offers special agricultural products from neighbouring provinces.

The region's food, specialties and handicraft products are brought to the market as well.

The market is open every day from 4am to 9am, and attracts nearly 300 boats. During festivals and holidays, up to 500 boats visit the 1 km-long floating market. It attracts 500 – 700 local and foreign tourists each day.

Nham Hung, a cultural researcher and playwright, said: "The Cai Rang floating market reflects cultural and tourism characteristics of Can Tho city and the Mekong Delta region."

"The market's appeal is about the large number of boats filled with goods, and friendly sellers," he said.

Due to its unique cultural value, Can Tho considers the market as the city's main tourism brand.-VNA