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Local Government Behavior and Property Right Formation in Rural China

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Author Info

  • Loren Brandt
  • Scott Rozelle
  • Matthew A. Turner

Abstract

Secure land tenure is important to the development process, but China's rural reforms have so far failed to provide farm households with this security. We examine the political economy of land tenure and find that local governments sacrifice tenure security in the interests of efficiency and equity. Local rent seeking also plays an important role, and is a likely source of the under-development of land rental markets. Our results further suggest that decreases in distortionary taxes and increases in the integrity of elections will lead to more secure tenure and an increased reliance on market land exchange.

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Bibliographic Info

Article provided by Mohr Siebeck, Tübingen in its journal Journal of Institutional and Theoretical Economics.

Volume (Year): 160 (2004)
Issue (Month): 4 (December)
Pages: 627-

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Handle: RePEc:mhr:jinste:urn:sici:0932-4569(200412)160:4_627:lgbapr_2.0.tx_2-x

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  1. Sicular, Terry, 1988. "Plan and Market in China's Agricultural Commerce," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 96(2), pages 283-307, April.
  2. Maxim Boycko & Andrei Shleifer & Robert W. Vishny, 1993. "Privatizing Russia," Brookings Papers on Economic Activity, Economic Studies Program, The Brookings Institution, vol. 24(2), pages 139-192.
  3. Gary S. Becker, 1984. "Public Policies, Pressure Groups, and Dead Weight Costs," University of Chicago - George G. Stigler Center for Study of Economy and State 35, Chicago - Center for Study of Economy and State.
  4. Kung James, Kaising, 1995. "Equal Entitlement versus Tenure Security under a Regime of Collective Property Rights: Peasants' Preference for Institutions in Post-reform Chinese Agriculture," Journal of Comparative Economics, Elsevier, vol. 21(1), pages 82-111, August.
  5. Besley, Timothy, 1995. "Property Rights and Investment Incentives: Theory and Evidence from Ghana," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 103(5), pages 903-37, October.
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