nep-cna New Economics Papers
on China
Issue of 2021‒01‒04
six papers chosen by
Zheng Fang
Ohio State University

  1. How the United States marched the semiconductor industry into its trade war with China By Chad P. Bown
  2. The Effects of Globalisation on International Trade Models: A Research on China By Toptancı, Ali İskan
  3. The failure of Chinese peer-to-peer lending platforms : Finance and politics By He, Qing; Li, Xiaoyang
  4. Millet, Rice, and Isolation: Origins and Persistence of the World's Most Enduring Mega-State By James Kai-sing Kung; Ömer Özak; Louis Putterman; Shuang Shi
  5. Cross border investment by state-owned enterprises By Valentina Burrai; Luciano Giua; Kateryna Perepechay
  6. Size matters: measuring the effects of inequality and growth shocks By Sanghamitra Bandyopadhyay; Rui Sun

  1. By: Chad P. Bown
    Abstract: The US-China trade war forced a reluctant semiconductor industry into someone else’s fight, a very different position from its leading role in the 1980s trade conflict with Japan. This paper describes how the political economy of the global semiconductor industry has evolved since the 1980s. That includes both a shift in the business model behind how semiconductors go from conception to a finished product as well as the geographic reorientation toward Asia of demand and manufactured supply. It uses that lens to explain how, during the modern conflict with China, US policymakers turned to a legally complex set of export restrictions targeting the semiconductor supply chain in the attempt to safeguard critical infrastructure in the telecommunications sector. The potentially far-reaching tactics included weaponization of exports by relatively small but highly specialized American software service and equipment providers in order to constrain Huawei, a Fortune Global 500 company. It describes potential costs of such policies, some of their unintended consequences, and whether policymakers might push them further in the attempt to constrain other Chinese firms.
    Keywords: Export restrictions, supply chains, national security, semiconductors, Huawei, US–China trade relations
    JEL: F13
    Date: 2020–12
  2. By: Toptancı, Ali İskan
    Abstract: It seems that "globalization processes" are failing. Instead, there has been an increase in nationalist and protectionist policies in the Western world. Therefore, it may force structural changes in international trade. The main purpose of this article is to uncover whether any changes and any income distribution in the Western world can be traced back to changing trading patterns. More specifically, there is increased efficiency in wages and opportunities for workers between export-oriented firms and the rest. China tends to trade heavily produced goods with more human capital. This leads to more vertical intra-industry trade with Western countries. Horizontal intra-industry trade provides positive economies and greater product variety for consumers, while vertical intra-industry trade is responsible for further structural change. Especially the presence of unskilled workers in the USA and the EU, experienced people take the gains of structural change. Thus, China's rising vertical intra-industry trade is responsible for some of the sectoral changes in Western countries and the separation of less-skilled workers. As a result, less-skilled workers in Western countries are consistently worse off. This may be one of many reasons to explain the rise of populism, nationalism, and protectionism in current western politics.
    Keywords: International Trade,Intra and Inter-Industry Trade,Economic Sectors,China,EU,USA
    Date: 2020
  3. By: He, Qing; Li, Xiaoyang
    Abstract: We investigate the influence of financial and political factors on peer-to-peer (P2P) platform failures in China’s online lending market. Using a competing risk model for platform survival, we show that large platforms, platforms with listed firms as large shareholders, and platforms with better information disclosure were less likely to go bankrupt or run off (platform owners abscond with investor funds). More importantly, failing platforms were much less likely to run off in advance of major political events, but more likely to declare bankruptcy or run off after such events. These effects are more pronounced for politically connected platforms, platforms operating in provinces where local officials have close ties with central government, and in provinces with better local financial conditions. Our study highlights the role of political incentives on government regulatory intervention in platform failures.
    JEL: G33 G21 G23 P26
    Date: 2020–12–15
  4. By: James Kai-sing Kung (The University of Hong Kong); Ömer Özak (Southern Methodist University); Louis Putterman (Brown University); Shuang Shi (The University of Hong Kong)
    Abstract: We propose and empirically test a theory for the endogenous formation and persistence of large states, using China as an example. We suggest that the relative timing of the emergence of agricultural societies and their distance to each other set off a race between autochthonous state-building projects and the expansion of neighboring (proto-)states. Using a novel dataset on the Chinese state's historical presence, the timing of agricultural adoption, social complexity, climate, and geography across 1x1 degree grid cells in East Asia, we provide empirical support for this hypothesis. Specifically, we find that on average, cells that adopted agriculture earlier or were close to the earliest archaic state in East Asia (Erlitou) remained longer under Sinitic control. In contrast, earlier adoption of agriculture decreased the persistent control of the Chinese state in cells farther than 2.8 weeks of travel from Erlitou.
    Keywords: Comparative Development, State-Building, Emergence of States, Agricultural Adoption, Isolation, Neolithic Revolution, Social Complexity, East Asia, China, Erlitou
    JEL: F50 F59 H70 H79 N90 O10 R10 Z10 Z13
    Date: 2020–12
  5. By: Valentina Burrai; Luciano Giua; Kateryna Perepechay
    Abstract: The paper analyses data on state-owned enterprises as cross-border investors and takes a first step towards analysing their investment characteristics since 2000. It shows that the number of cross-border investments by state-owned enterprises was overall small, with most originating from the People’s Republic of China (hereafter “China”), and suggests that the investment preferences of state-owned enterprises may fuel excess capacity in the steel sector. This is because state-owned enterprises display a preference for building new capacity over acquiring existing capacity when investing abroad, and a preference for investment destinations with volatile demand growth. Data also suggest that state-owned enterprises might be more likely to undertake domestic capacity closures after a cross-border investment, which is likely influenced by recent policies introduced to curb excess capacity in China. Conversely, the data offer insufficient evidence regarding the link between cross-border investment by state-owned enterprises and capacity outcomes in target jurisdictions.
    Date: 2020–12–15
  6. By: Sanghamitra Bandyopadhyay; Rui Sun
    Abstract: Understanding the relationship between income inequality and economic growth is of utmost importance to economists and social scientists. In this paper we use a Bayesian structural vector autoregression approach to estimate the relationship between inequality and growth via growth and inequality shocks for two large economies, China and the USA, for the years 1979-2018. We find that a growth shock is inequality-increasing, and an inequality shock is growth-reducing.
    Keywords: Inequality, Growth, Bayesian estimation, structural VAR, China, United States
    Date: 2020

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