With hit documentary series "A Bite of China" under its belt, China’s Documentary Channel has attracted quite a following since it began nearly three years ago. Now, thanks to a franchise deal, the channel’s newly launched programme "Documenting China" will be broadcast through 70 satellite TV stations around China.

"Documenting China" is a daily 30-minute program that features some of the best new documentaries tracking local customs and events from different provinces around China, in collaboration with local TV networks. The show was launched in the 70 cities that the deal involves on Monday.

The program will feature top class documentaries covering nature, society, culture and history. "Wild China", an Emmy award winning documentary co-produced by CCTV and the BBC, will also be on the bill.

"Audiences in the 70 related cities can watch our programs on their local TV channels, not absolutely on CCTV’s documentary channel. I think this move will be good to promote the documentary culture, and enable more youngsters to explore nature and science through watching documentaries," said Liu Wen, Director of CCTV's Documentary Channel.

"We’ll put more human and financial resources into this area and with the help of the franchise, we hope we can create more quality documentaries of our own," said Zhang Wanxing, Director of Jilin TV.

Co-releasing Documentary China is part of the efforts to share quality TV programs with local TV stations which might face financial restrictions, program feeds or manpower. The franchise deal hopes to spur more joint efforts between CCTV and local stations. A second batch of provincial or municipal TV stations are expected to join the franchise, enabling the program coverage to be even wider.