nep-cna New Economics Papers
on China
Issue of 2024‒02‒19
eleven papers chosen by
Zheng Fang, Ohio State University

  1. Early Life Exposure to the Great Chinese Famine (1959–1961) and the Health of Older Adults in China: A Meta-Analysis (2008–2023) By Shen, Chi; Chen, Xi
  2. The Intergenerational Effect of Parental Health Shocks on Adult Children Fertility Decisions in China By Qi, Shouwei; Li, Xiang; Matthews, Kent
  3. Wages, labour markets, and living standards in China, 1530-1840 By Liu, Dr Ziang
  4. Does Chinese research hinge on US co-authors? Evidence from the China initiative By Aghion, Philippe; Antonin, Celine; Paluskiewicz, Luc; Stromberg, David; Wargon, Raphael; Westin, Karolina; Sun, Xueping
  5. Hukou Status and Children’s Education in China By Yue Sun; Liqiu Zhao; Zhong Zhao
  6. Effectiveness of electric vehicle subsidies in China: A three-dimensional panel study By Tong Zhang, Paul J. Burke, and Qi Wang
  7. Occupational Differences in the Effects of Retirement on Hospitalizations for Mental Illness among Female Workers: Evidence from Administrative Data in China By Wang, Tianyu; Sun, Ruochen; Sindelar, Jody L.; Chen, Xi
  8. SME Relationship Banking and Loan Contracting: Survey-based Evidence from China By Lu, Shun; Glushenkova, Marina; Huang, Wei; Matthews, Kent
  9. Mobile immobility: an exploratory study of rural women’s engagement with e-commerce livestreaming in China By Huang, Yanning; Yang, Zi; Chang, Kuan
  10. Synergy or Rivalry? Glimpses of Regional Modernization and Public Service Equalization: A Case Study from China By Shengwen Shi; Jian'an Zhang
  11. China's Trade Strategies and Korea-China Cooperation Plans By LEE , Seung Shin; HYUN, Sang Baek; NA, Su Yeob; KIM, Young Sun

  1. By: Shen, Chi (Xi’an Jiaotong University); Chen, Xi (Yale University)
    Abstract: There is mounting evidence indicating that the aging process initiates during early life stages, with in utero the individual's environment playing a significant role. Consequently, it is crucial to understand the enduring effects of early life circumstances on health in old age. In this study, we conducted a meta-analysis to examine the effects of the Great Chinese Famine (1959–1961) on the health of older adults. We also explored potential mechanisms underlying these effects. The complex interplay between early life circumstances, multiple health-related sectors, and healthy aging necessitates a comprehensive life-course approach and strategic interventions to enhance public health in an aging society.
    Keywords: early life circumstances, famine, life course health, aging, meta-analysis
    JEL: I14 J14 J13 I18
    Date: 2024–01
  2. By: Qi, Shouwei (School of Public Finance and Taxation, Zhongnan University of Economics and Law); Li, Xiang (School of Public Finance and Taxation, Zhongnan University of Economics and Law); Matthews, Kent (Cardiff Business School)
    Abstract: We investigate the intergenerational effect of parental health shocks on the fertility choices of adult children in China. By using a comprehensive longitudinal dataset of Chinese households, severe and unexpected health shocks to parents have been identified. To address sample imbalance issues in survey data and endogeneity concerns characteristic of traditional health shock studies, we employ two matching methodologies: Coarsened Exact Matching (CEM) and Propensity Score Matching (PSM). Our findings indicate that parental health shocks significantly postpone the reproductive age of adult children and reduce their likelihood of having more children than they originally planned. We also find persistent differences in fertility decisions for the first, second and third child among adult children. The economic constraints inferred from this study have notable implications on the reduced fertility behavior of adult children, thereby affecting their entire reproductive life cycle.
    Keywords: parental health shocks, fertility decisions, intergenerational effect
    JEL: J18
    Date: 2024–01
  3. By: Liu, Dr Ziang
    Abstract: This article studies the long-term wage development in China between 1530 and 1840. In the long run, nominal wages moved in tandem with prices, but did not respond as quickly as the increase in prices. Real wages experienced two substantial falls between the 1620s-1650s and the 1740s-1760s, but remained relatively stable in the remainder of the period examined. Rural-urban wage disparities suggest that the agricultural sector, rather than urban industries, continued to absorb surplus labour. A comparison of wages in Lower Yangzi China and England suggests that the wage gap widens after 1700.
    Keywords: wage; living standard; labour market; early modern China; great divergence; Elsevier deal
    JEL: N30 N15 J21 J31
    Date: 2023–12–01
  4. By: Aghion, Philippe; Antonin, Celine; Paluskiewicz, Luc; Stromberg, David; Wargon, Raphael; Westin, Karolina; Sun, Xueping
    Abstract: Launched in November 2018 by the Trump administration, the China Initiative was meant to "protect US intellectual property and technologies against Chinese Economic Espionage". In practice, it made administrative procedures more complicated and funding less accessible for collaborative projects between Chinese and US researchers. In this paper we use information from the Scopus database to analyze how the China Initiative shock affected the volume, quality and direction of Chinese research. We find a negative effect of the Initiative on the average quality of both the publications and the co-authors of Chinese researchers with prior US collaborations. Moreover, this negative effect has been stronger for Chinese researchers with higher research productivity and/or who worked on US-dominated fields and/or topics prior to the shock. Finally, we find that Chinese researchers with prior US collaborations reallocated away from US coauthors after the shock and also towards more basic research.
    Keywords: Trump administration; China; US intellectual property; technologies; espionage
    JEL: O30 I23
    Date: 2023–07–17
  5. By: Yue Sun; Liqiu Zhao; Zhong Zhao (Renmin University of China)
    Abstract: Under China’s household registration (hukou) system, children with rural hukou lack equal access to education in urban areas. This paper investigates the causal effect of hukou status on children’s education by exploiting an exogenous change in hukou status induced by the hukou reform in 1998. Before the reform, children could only inherit their mother’s hukou status. Post-1998, newborns and preschoolers gained the ability to inherit either their father’s or mother’s hukou status, creating a unique exogenous opportunity for children with urban fathers and rural mothers to obtain urban hukou. Using China’s 2010 population census data, we employ a difference-in-differences strategy to examine the impact of hukou status on children’s education. Our findings reveal that the younger cohorts exposed to the reform are 15.1 percentage points more likely to have urban hukou and 18.9 percentage points more likely to be at the appropriate grade level for their age. Moreover, the effect is more pronounced amongst girls and children from educated families or large cities.
    Keywords: Hukou reform, grade-for-age, education equality, rural-urban disparity
    JEL: I24 I28 O15 R28
    Date: 2024–01
  6. By: Tong Zhang, Paul J. Burke, and Qi Wang
    Abstract: Electric vehicles (EVs) are likely to emerge as the main means of zero-emission road transport. China has used a variety of policy approaches to encourage EV adoption, including vehicle purchase subsidies. This study uses a three-dimensional dataset to estimate the effect of purchase subsidies for domestic EVs on adoption in 316 cities in China over January 2016–December 2019. An instrumental variable approach that utilizes the timing of the cancellation of local subsidies by the central government is pursued. The findings suggest that purchase subsidies for domestic EVs have led to a sizeable increase in uptake, but have discouraged uptake of imported EVs. Higher consumer awareness of the subsidies is associated with a larger proportional effect on uptake of domestically-produced vehicles. We estimate that increases in the per-vehicle subsidy rate have on average reduced carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions at a marginal subsidy cost of about 4, 453 CNY (US$712) per tonne, which is high. However, other benefits, including long-run benefits from the emergence of a new clean technology sector, may be substantial.
    JEL: H23 H31 Q58
    Date: 2024
  7. By: Wang, Tianyu; Sun, Ruochen; Sindelar, Jody L.; Chen, Xi
    Abstract: Retirement, a major transition in the life course, may affect many aspects of retirees' well-being, including health and health care utilization. Leveraging differential statutory retirement age (SRA) by occupation for China's urban female workers, we provide some of the first evidence on the causal effect of retirement on hospitalizations attributable to mental illness and its heterogeneity. To address endogeneity in retirement decisions, we take advantage of exogeneity of the differing SRA cut-offs for blue-collar (age 50) and white-collar (age 55) female urban employees. We apply a Fuzzy Regression Discontinuity Design (RDD) around the SRA cut-offs using nationally representative hospital inpatient claims data that cover these workers. We show that blue-collar females incur more hospitalizations for mental illness after retirement, while no similar change is found for white-collar females. Conditional on blue-collar females being hospitalized, probabilities of overall and ER admissions due to mental illness increase by 2.3 and 1.2 percentage points upon retirement, respectively. The effects are primarily driven by patients within the categories of schizophrenia, schizotypal and delusional disorders; and neurotic, stress-related and somatoform disorders. Moreover, the 'Donut' RDD estimates suggest that pent-up demand at retirement unlikely dominates our findings for blue-collar females. Rather, our results lend support to their worsening mental health at retirement. These findings suggest that occupational differences in mental illness and related health care utilization at retirement should be considered when optimizing retirement policy schemes.
    Keywords: mental illness, behavioral disorders, retirement, inpatient care, blue-collar females, white-collar females
    JEL: I11 J26 J14 I18 H55
    Date: 2024
  8. By: Lu, Shun (Nottingham University Business School China, University of Nottingham Ningbo, China); Glushenkova, Marina (Nottingham University Business School China, University of Nottingham Ningbo, China); Huang, Wei (Nottingham University Business School China, University of Nottingham Ningbo, China,); Matthews, Kent (Cardiff Business School)
    Abstract: This study explores the impact of relationship banking on the financial constraints and loan conditions of small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) in China. Our research contributes to the literature in several ways. First, we examine both the financial costs and loan benefits associated with SME relationship banking, extending the scope of existing literature. Second, our study is unique in its focus on micro-enterprises, rather than large-scale listed companies in China. Lastly, we enhance the quality of the analysis by using direct measures of firms’ spending on bank relationships and their financial constraints, drawn from a recent survey on SMEs in China. Our findings are twofold. On one hand, bank relationship spending significantly reduces financial constraints for SMEs by facilitating access to loans. On the other hand, while this spending enables SMEs to secure more bank credit and longer-term loans, it also results in higher interest rates, increased guarantee requirements, and overall dissatisfaction with loan services. Our research provides new insights into the role of 'guanxi' in China's credit market and its consequences.
    Keywords: SME Financing, Relationship Banking, China, Financial Constraints
    JEL: G21 L14 O53
    Date: 2024–01
  9. By: Huang, Yanning; Yang, Zi; Chang, Kuan
    Abstract: Based on our fieldwork in Yunnan Province and Ningxia Hui Autonomous Region, this paper explores the different ways in which Chinese rural women engage with the rising industry of e-commerce livestreaming related to agricultural products and villages. Our analytical framework is informed by feminist political economy, which pays heed to the gendered social settings, operation of power, and entanglement between women’s domesticity and productivity that underpin people’s economic activities. We argue that Chinese rural women’s simultaneous empowerment and disempowerment by e-commerce livestreaming are characterized by “mobile immobility”, a term inspired by Wallis’s (2013) research on rural women’s technological empowerment by mobile phones a decade ago. On the one hand, this latest form of e-commerce has created an apparently accessible path for rural women, who tend to be geographically immobile, to achieve social mobility by becoming professional webcasters and/or vloggers. On the other hand, this enablement is in fact classed, aged, and preconditioned on in-laws’ support and willingness to share these women’s domestic duties, which are not guaranteed. The urban-oriented digital economy of e-commerce livestreaming capitalizes on rural young women’s femininity, docile bodies and labor as well as the reproductive labor performed by their family members at the microlevel, reinforcing the urban–rural disparity at the macrolevel. The paper ends with reflections on the role of information and communication technologies and e-commerce in the development of rural China.
    Keywords: Chinese rural women; E-commerce; female empowerment; livestreaming; urban–rural disparity
    JEL: L81
    Date: 2024–01–24
  10. By: Shengwen Shi (School of Economics, Shanghai University of Finance and Economics, Shanghai, China); Jian'an Zhang (School of Economics, Shanghai University of Finance and Economics, Shanghai, China)
    Abstract: For most developing countries, increasing the equalization of basic public services is widely recognized as an effective channel to improve people's sense of contentment. However, for many emerging economies like China, the equalization level of basic public services may often be neglected in the trade-off between the speed and quality of development. Taking the Yangtze River Delta region of China as an example, this paper first adopts the coupling coordination degree model to explore current status of basic public services in this region, and then uses Moran's I index to study the overall equalization level of development there. Moreover, this paper uses the Theil index to analyze the main reasons for the spatial differences in the level of public services, followed by the AF method to accurately identify the exact weaknesses of the 40 counties of 10 cities with the weakest level of basic public service development. Based on this, this paper provides targeted optimization initiatives and continues to explore the factors affecting the growth of the level of public service equalization through the convergence model, verifying the convergence trend of the degree of public service equalization, and ultimately providing practical policy recommendations for promoting the equalization of basic public services.
    Date: 2023–11
    Abstract: As uncertainties in the global trade environment expand, China's trade strategy is changing, and these changes are expected to have a significant impact on our trade environment with China. This paper analyzed China's policies on new trade issues such as supply chain reorganization, digital trade, climate change response and proposed policy implications.
    Keywords: China; Trade Strategy; Korea-China Cooperation
    Date: 2024–01–26

This nep-cna issue is ©2024 by Zheng Fang. It is provided as is without any express or implied warranty. It may be freely redistributed in whole or in part for any purpose. If distributed in part, please include this notice.
General information on the NEP project can be found at For comments please write to the director of NEP, Marco Novarese at <>. Put “NEP” in the subject, otherwise your mail may be rejected.
NEP’s infrastructure is sponsored by the School of Economics and Finance of Massey University in New Zealand.