The service sector accounted for 52.2 percent of China’s total GDP in 2018, which suggests that China has entered an era of service economy, according to a research group with the Chinese Academy of Social Sciences.
Xia Jiechang, head of the research team, made the remarks at a recent seminar on the development and opening-up of the country’s service industry in the new era.
The service sector has become a pillar of China’s economy, Xia added, noting that the tertiary industry attracted 46.3 percent of the country’s workforce and 56 percent of fixed-asset investment.
This was attributed to the high priority China places on developing its service industry as it has issued several documents in this regard, including a paper on promoting quality and expansion of capacity in the housekeeping service sector published by the State Council this June.
The country’s service industry still has its shortcomings, such as shortage of private services in education, healthcare and elderly care, structural imbalance between supply and demand, and backward management system.
Data showed that the average government education budget for general junior school students in Shanghai was over 30,000 yuan in 2016, while the figure in central China’s Henan province was only 7, 811 yuan.
To pursue high-quality development of the modern service sector, China needs to improve its market environment, support policies as well as laws and regulations on the protection of rights and interests of investors, market access, credit systems and governance, Xia noted.