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China urges reform, development of Chongqing
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The State Council, or Cabinet, agreed in an executive meeting on Wednesday to speed up the reform and development of the inland Chongqing municipality.

China has four municipalities: Beijing, Tianjin in the north, Shanghai in the east, and Chongqing in the southwest.

"Local authorities are required to accelerate the overall development of rural and urban areas and promote environmental protection and natural resources conservation, to turn Chongqing into an important growth pole in western region," according to the meeting, presided over by Premier Wen Jiabao.

Local governments should help people in the Three Gorges area to develop local pillar industries, modern agriculture and improve rural production and living conditions, according to the meeting.

The city should also step up construction of a new district in its north and a newly-approved bonded zone and carry out regional economic cooperation.

(Xinhua News Agency January 1, 2009)

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