Quang Ngai City Market, the largest in the central province of Quang Ngai, caught fire early on Feb. 9 morning, ruining about 680 shops and more than 600 tonnes of goods, worth about 120 billion VND (5.7 million USD).

As many as 424 businesses were affected.

Ten fire engines and a full contingent of fire fighters were mobilised and contained the blaze.

Officials announced the fire was under control by 2pm, seven hours after fire fighters reached the blaze, along a path blocked by hundreds of temporary stalls.

Vice Chairman of the municipal People's Committee Huynh Chanh said more than 500 small traders were running businesses in the two-storey market with a total area of 5,000 square metres, some of them at temporary stalls because a portion of the market was under construction.

The provincial People's Committee has asked the municipal office to establish a steering committee to determine the cause of the fire and identify losses.

Local authority also suggested providing 5 million VND (240 USD) from the municipal budget and the Quang Ngai Agricultural Product Joint Stock Company pleged 3 million VND (140 USD) for each vendor. The city will arrange a new location for shops, so business can resume within a month./.