nep-cna New Economics Papers
on China
Issue of 2023‒10‒09
twelve papers chosen by
Zheng Fang, Ohio State University

  1. The US-China Trade War and the Relocation of Global Value Chains to Mexico By Hâle Utar; Alfonso Cebreros Zurita; Luis Bernardo Torres Ruiz; Hale Utar
  2. Time to say goodbye? The impact of environmental regulation on foreign divestment By Mao, Haiou; Görg, Holger; Fang, Guopei
  3. When State Becomes the Only Buyer: Effects of national volume-based procurement of cardiac stents in China By SUN Jessica Ya; YIN Ting; LIU Zhiyong
  4. Rural Pensions, Intra-Household Bargaining, and Elderly Medical Expenditure in the People’s Republic of China By Chen, Zeyuan; Park, Albert
  5. Global Supply Chains: The Looming “Great Reallocation” By Laura Alfaro; Davin Chor
  6. Comparing Agentic Meritocratic Citizenship in Europe and China: A Research Note By Soysal, Yasemin; Cebolla Boado, Héctor
  7. Central Bank Digital Currencies in the Post-pandemic Era By Dominique Torre; Qing Xu
  8. Do international investment and trade flows show any signs of fragmentation? By Kaaresvirta, Juuso; Kerola, Eeva; Nuutilainen, Riikka
  9. Protests By Davide Cantoni; Andrew Kao; David Y. Yang; Noam Yuchtman
  10. Comparing Risk Profiles of International Stock Markets as Functional Data: COVID-19 versus the Global Financial Crisis By Ryan Shackleton; Sonali Das; Rangan Gupta
  11. Floating Population: Migration With(Out) Family and the Spatial Distribution of Economic Activity By Clément Imbert; Joan Monras; Marlon Seror; Yanos Zylberberg
  12. The Effects of Mass Transit System on Urban Population Distribution:Evidence from Wuhan By Se-il MUN; Lei QIN; Yue ZHOU

  1. By: Hâle Utar; Alfonso Cebreros Zurita; Luis Bernardo Torres Ruiz; Hale Utar
    Abstract: Did the 2018/19 US-China trade war trigger adjustment of Global Value Chains (GVCs) and nearshoring to Mexico? We address this question with confidential longitudinal firm-level trade data from Mexico that covers the universe of international trade transactions over 2015-2021. By merging the firm-level customs data with a registry of GVC firms and constructing firm-level measures of trade policy exposures based on firms’ pre-shock trade at the level of HS 6-digit products-destination pairs, we show that increased Chinese import protection in the US has a significant positive impact on Mexican firms’ trade with the US, and this positive impact is entirely driven by GVC firms, and especially those in skill-intensive manufacturing industries. The nature of the impact of the heightened Chinese import tariffs on GVC firms’ sourcing suggests a rise in GVC activities in Mexico with linkages to Asian and US-based GVCs. Our analysis also reveals increased net exports and product offerings of Mexican GVC firms in response to the heightened Chinese import protection in the US, suggesting increased domestic activities in Mexico. However, we also document a negative impact of the retaliatory tariffs of China, primarily affecting export services and a counterbalancing negative effect of the US tariffs via GVC firms’ inputs from China, highlighting the complex dynamics at play. Overall, our findings show a reorganization of GVCs towards Mexico as a consequence of the trade war and provide evidence for the role of trade policy in reshaping GVCs.
    Keywords: trade war, GVCs, nearshoring, Mexico, US, China
    JEL: F13 F14 F23 F61 F68
    Date: 2023
  2. By: Mao, Haiou; Görg, Holger; Fang, Guopei
    Abstract: We look at divestments by foreign firms - a topic that has received comparatively little attention in the literature - and investigate how changes in the regulatory environment in the host country may impact on such divestment decisions. We use the implementation of China's Two Control Zone (TCZ) policy as a "quasi-natural experiment", using detailed firm level combined with city level data for the empirical analysis. Our results show that the implementation of TCZ policy has led to higher probabilities of divestments by foreign firms in targeted TCZ cities and industries. The mechanism behind this seems to be a TCZ-induced increase in discharge fees and efforts to reduce SO2 emissions. Allowing for heterogeneity of effects, we find that the effect is particularly strong for firms from source countries with less stringent environmental regulation, and those using less advanced technology. We furthermore show that firms using intermediates from polluting industries also experience a higher probability of divestment.
    Keywords: foreign divestment, environmental regulation, Two Control Zone Policy, China
    JEL: F23 Q58
    Date: 2023
  3. By: SUN Jessica Ya; YIN Ting; LIU Zhiyong
    Abstract: Medical device prices are a significant drivers of high healthcare spending in China; however, lowering prices remains an open question. We examine a unique solution for China as the central government acts as a single buyer for medical devices in the context of the national volume-based procurement (VBP) of cardiac stents. The tender held in November 2020 and reduced the average price of cardiac stents by 95%. Using detailed inpatient discharge record data, we found that the national VBP program increased patients’ total medical spending by 20%. The failure in reducing medical costs was due to physician-induced demand; the utilization of coronary stents and drug-eluting balloons increased by almost 10%. Distortionary effects were more prominent for patients with residential insurance and physicians with higher persuasion power.
    Date: 2023–09
  4. By: Chen, Zeyuan (Southwestern University of Finance and Economics); Park, Albert (Asian Development Bank)
    Abstract: The rural elderly in the People’s Republic of China spend less on medical expenditures as they age despite declining health, which raises welfare concerns. This paper investigates the role of intra-household bargaining power on health expenditures of the elderly by evaluating the impact of cash transfers from a new social pension program. The program provided windfall payments to those above age 60, making it possible to employ a regression discontinuity design based on age of eligibility to estimate causal effects. Using data from the 2011 and 2013 waves of the China Health and Retirement Longitudinal Study, we find that receiving pension payments increases both the utilization of outpatient care and outpatient expenditures by the elderly who experienced illness. This result is robust to controlling for total household expenditures per capita, ruling out income effects as the main channel. Consistent with pensions increasing elderly bargaining power, we find that pensions significantly increase medical expenditures only for those elderly who co-reside with children or grandchildren but have no effect on those who live independently.
    Keywords: medical expenditures; pension; elderly; intra-household bargaining; regression discontinuity design; People’s Republic of China
    JEL: J14 J26
    Date: 2023–09–28
  5. By: Laura Alfaro; Davin Chor
    Abstract: Global supply chains have come under unprecedented stress as a result of US-China trade tensions, the Covid-19 pandemic, and geopolitical shocks. We document shifts in the pattern of US participation in global value chains over the last four decades, in terms of partner countries, products, and modes, with a focus on the last five years (2017-2022). The available data point to a looming “great reallocation” in supply chain activity: Direct US sourcing from China has decreased, with low-wage locations (principally: Vietnam) and nearshoring/friendshoring alternatives (notably: Mexico) gaining in import share. The production line positioning of the US’ imports has also become more upstream, which is indicative of some reshoring of production stages. We sound several cautionary notes over the policies that have set this reallocation in motion: It is unclear if these measures will reduce US dependence on supply chains linked to China, and there are moreover already signs that prices of imports from Vietnam and Mexico are on the rise.
    JEL: F0 F1
    Date: 2023–09
  6. By: Soysal, Yasemin; Cebolla Boado, Héctor
    Abstract: Since the 1990s, global cultural shifts driven by neoliberalism have ushered in significant changes in the institutions of citizenship. This has given rise to an increasingly agentic conception of the individual, with strong meritocratic ideological underpinnings, as manifested across a wide range of policy and institutional domains. While the normative foundations and the institutional embodiment of agentic citizenship are widely studied, we know less about the individual enactments of such citizenship. We present comparative evidence on agentic and meritocratic orientations and their relationship with solidaristic inclinations among higher education students in China and Europe.
    Keywords: Agentic Citizenship, Meritocracy, Neoliberalism, Self-Efficacy, Redistributive Solidarity, Survey, Higher Education Students, Agentische Staatsbürgerschaft, Meritokratie, Neoliberalismus, Selbstwirksamkeit, Umverteilungssolidarität, Umfrageforschung, Studierende
    Date: 2023
  7. By: Dominique Torre (GREDEG - Groupe de Recherche en Droit, Economie et Gestion - UNS - Université Nice Sophia Antipolis (1965 - 2019) - CNRS - Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique - UCA - Université Côte d'Azur); Qing Xu (UCL - Université catholique de Lille, GREDEG - Groupe de Recherche en Droit, Economie et Gestion - UNS - Université Nice Sophia Antipolis (1965 - 2019) - CNRS - Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique - UCA - Université Côte d'Azur)
    Abstract: With fast development of Fintech in financial industry and increasing popularity of cryptocurrencies and stablecoins, more and more central banks conducted extensive research on Central Bank Digital Currencies (CBDCs), the new form of digital fiat currency. Some of them are engaging in CBDCs pilots, with cross border payment tests. Important currency areas as China, EU or UK are interested in the subject but less significative ones as Bahamas, Nigeria, or Venezuela seem also interested in. This chapter aims to analyze this new phase in the development of the forms of money/means of payment. Different forms of CBDCs are imagined: are they different expressions of the same objective or not? Will hey substitute the official currency or other means of payments? Which technology will be activated to make the operational? Which will be the role of banks on this context? How to explain that some big central banks (the Federal Reserve) are not interested in them? Will they generalize?
    Keywords: CBDC, People's Bank of China, blockchains, disintermediation, Stable coins, means of payment, currencies, digitalization
    Date: 2023–07–20
  8. By: Kaaresvirta, Juuso; Kerola, Eeva; Nuutilainen, Riikka
    Abstract: This paper utilizes available aggregate country-level data, as well as bilateral trade and investment data, to identify signs of fragmentation in trade and investment patterns among ten major trading countries or regional trading blocks. We compare the trade and investment trends in the years during the US-China trade war and increase in geopolitical tensions (2018-2021) against the years preceding the trade war (2014-2017). Our analysis generally corroborates findings in the existing literature. Bilateral flows between the US and China have been damaged, but there is little evidence of wider fragmentation or that the world is splitting into competing spheres. Even focusing on technologyintensive manufactures that are increasingly subject to trade restrictions, we find no evidence of broad fragmentation. Our analysis does reveal, however, shifts in global trade and FDI, particularly towards Central and Eastern Europe (CEE) and ASEAN countries. This may reflect a partial reshuffling of global value chains that is a natural outcome of favorable developments in these regions, as well as rising production costs in China. Such shifts do not necessarily reflect global fragmentation driven by geoeconomics factors.
    Keywords: Global trade, foreign direct investments, fragmentation
    Date: 2023
  9. By: Davide Cantoni; Andrew Kao; David Y. Yang; Noam Yuchtman
    Abstract: Citizens have long taken to the streets to demand change, expressing political views that may otherwise be suppressed. Protests have produced change at local, national, and international scales, including spectacular moments of political and social transformation. We document five new empirical patterns describing 1.2 million protest events across 218 countries between 1980 and 2020. First, autocracies and weak democracies experienced a trend break in protests during the Arab Spring. Second, protest movements also rose in importance following the Arab Spring. Third, protest movements geographically diffuse over time, spiking to their peak, before falling off. Fourth, a country’s year-to-year economic performance is not strongly correlated with protests; individual values are predictive of protest participation. Fifth, the US, China, and Russia are the most over-represented countries by their share of academic studies. We discuss each pattern’s connections to the existing literature and anticipate paths for future work.
    JEL: P0
    Date: 2023–08
  10. By: Ryan Shackleton (Department of Information Technology, University of Pretoria, Pretoria, South Africa); Sonali Das (Department of Business Management, University of Pretoria, Pretoria, South Africa); Rangan Gupta (Department of Economics, University of Pretoria, Pretoria, South Africa)
    Abstract: In this paper, we aim to provide a detailed econometric analysis of the realised volatility in international stock markets of Brazil, China, Europe, India, the United Kingdom, and the United States, which represent a mix of large developing, and developed markets. For our purpose, we use the Functional Data Analysis (FDA) framework, whence discrete volatility data were first transformed into continuous functions, and thereafter, derivatives of the continuous functions were investigated, and kinetic and potential energy associated is the volatility system were extracted. Results revealed that COVID-19 indeed had a significant effect on international financial market volatility for all the countries, with the exception of China. Therealised volatility of the international financial markets did return to their pre-COVID levels in May 2020, and this recovery time was significantly faster than the 2008 financial crisis recovery period. Within the FDA framework, we further investigated the role of uncertainty on the realised volatility, specifically from an outbreak of an infectious disease (such as COVID-19) and a daily newspaper-based infectious disease index as the predictor. The regression analysis showed that the volatility of financial markets can be accurately modelled by this infectious disease index, but only for periods experiencing an epidemic or pandemic.
    Keywords: Realised volatility, International stock markets, Functional data analysis
    JEL: C22 C51 C52 C53 G15
    Date: 2023–09
  11. By: Clément Imbert; Joan Monras; Marlon Seror; Yanos Zylberberg
    Abstract: This paper argues that migrants’ decision to bring their dependent family members shapes their consumption behavior, their choice of destination, and their sensitivity to migration barriers. We document that in China: (i) rural migrants disproportionately move to expensive cities; (ii) in these cities they live without their family and in poorer housing conditions; and (iii) they remit more, especially when living without their family. We then develop a quantitative general equilibrium spatial model in which migrant households choose whether, how (with or without their family), and where to migrate. We estimate the model using plausibly exogenous variation in wages, housing prices, and exposure to family migration costs. We use the model to estimate migration costs and relate them to migration policy. We find that hukou policies protect workers in large, expensive, and high income cities at the expense of rural households, who use remittances to overcome some of these costs.
    Keywords: migration; remittances; economic geography; spatial equilibrium
    JEL: R12 J61 O15
    Date: 2023–08–30
  12. By: Se-il MUN; Lei QIN; Yue ZHOU
    Abstract: This paper aims to evaluate empirically how station spacing affects the density along the transit line and the compactness of the urban area. We derive the population density equation as a function of station spacing, based on urban economics model of residential land use. We estimate the population density equation using data for grids in Wuhan, China. Based on the estimated equation, we conduct counterfactual simulations for several cases of station spacing to evaluate the extent to which shorter station spacing contributes to land use compactness.
    Keywords: Microcredit; Mass Transit System; Compact land use; Station spacing; Population distribution
    JEL: R14 R21 R31 R42
    Date: 2023–09

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