Officially called “Rūpniecības preču tirgus Latgale” or just locally as “Latgalīte” – the now famous, so called Riga Black Market, is to be closed – to be reopened again as a “legal” junk sale place – Says article in news site diena.lv.
I personally do not call “Latgalite” a black market – grey market would be the right name – some of the stuff is perfectly legal, as it is a place were people take their old junk and other bric-a-brac to sell, but some, especially bike parts and mobile phone section, could be of questionably legal origin. The stuff was “found on the street” as they say 🙂
The contract with the current managers of the market place is not to be extended beyond this year(2012). City Council of Riga is looking for a way to open a “legal” junk sale market in its place.
The problem arises – how does one prove that the stuff they are selling is not stolen – especially if the thing is coming from around 1950ies or around – as the original documents are probably lost and there is no way to prove the legality of the items.
The electronics and electrics spare part section probably will not be badly affected, but the “we have all you can think of” section, where one can buy things starting from rusty screw to a Nazi Cossack(yes there is such a thing) cavalry sword, would, quite reasonably, be hurt – as some of the items are quite too bizarre to be properly “legal”.
I hope the reorganisation process will be optimally managed and the flea market of Riga will not loose its original street vibe and will not become too legal.