An explosion at a fireworks factory in southern China on Monday killed six people and injured 38 others, the local government said.

The blast shook Nanyang Export Fireworks Factory, the city of Liling in Hunan province said. The factory is properly licensed, it said.

It did not say what caused the explosion but said it was a work safety incident.

Workplace accidents are common in China because of lax enforcement of safety regulations, although safety standards are improving.

China is the world's largest producer of fireworks, which are widely used to celebrate the lunar new year. The festival falls in February in 2015.