Wednesday, May 21, 2008

The Blue Market

Today our group visited the Blue Market. Upon attempting to find online research of operational strategies of this market of Lima I found little. As a result I feel that others should know the kinds of great things this small community is doing to improve their lives while remaining in a strong communal organization. Rather than discussing the thrifty values of many different products, I wish to discuss the manner in which this particular market operates. The icon of this community/market is an ant. When I heard how this particular market operates
I felt others should see what this group of merchants is doing. This is not just another market place in Lima. In the blue market local merchants, of whom would be unable to afford to purchase property for their own facilities, have come together in to establish, construct, and operate a communal shopping center. The current president of this shopping center explained to us that in the Blue Market, the merchants operate their individual booths with the aids of their families. These families pulled funds together, found partial outside investment and began constructing their dream.
It appears as a mall but is much more complex. Each family pays a community portion to the mortgage of their property, and in exchange each family posses what could be described as a Tenants in Common form of mortgage. Paying an evenly split portion of the mortgage and paying dues to facilitate to repairs and maintenance this market place thrives with business and appears to be accomplishing their agendas. The president explained that they were down to 1 million dollars in their mortgage. She concluded by explaining that they hoped to expand this facility three additional floors higher and perhaps one day take their business model into the global market place.

By Oscar Duran

3 comments:

elsaf said...

It's fascinating that almost every country has it's own version of an open market. No matter how they are setup and run they all share the same sense of community and shoppers adding their excitement to the air as they hunt for their next big find of the day.

ocelle said...
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ocelle said...

I really like your postings Oscar! Blue Dust market is made of immigrant small traders. Their stores sell garments, shoes, electronics, and music.
Years ago, the governmnt taxed imports very high, so only the well-to-do people could buy these things. These restrictions on consumption generated a black market for these items. This was the origin of the Blue Dust market. Nowadays, they only sell discount items that enter Peruvian borders legally or that are produce at Gamarra, the garment district.
In its origins, the Blue Dust market's small traders came from the border regions of Peru, such as Puno (border with Bolivia), Tacna (border with Chile) or Tumbes (border with Ecuador). Thus, the market was also an ethnic nich, hence its original community organizing strength.