China's State Council said Tuesday that it has allowed a further six cities to launch comprehensive pilot programs for opening up the service sector.
The six cities -- Shenyang, Nanjing, Hangzhou, Wuhan, Guangzhou and Chengdu -- can carry out the pilot programs for a period of three years, starting from the date when their plans for the programs were approved, according to the State Council.
It urged these cities to speed up reform and opening up in the service sector, accelerate development of modern services, and forge new advantages in international competition and cooperation.
China started the pilot program for opening up the service sector in Beijing in 2015 and added Tianjin, Shanghai, Hainan and Chongqing to the list for such programs in 2021.
The service industry has seen fast growth in China in recent years, with its added value increasing 1.49 times since 2012.
The country's service trade grew 17.2 percent year on year to 4.92 trillion yuan (about 704 billion U.S. dollars) in the first 10 months of 2022, data from the Ministry of Commerce showed.