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The Impact of Economic Geography on Wages: Disentangling the Channels of Influence

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  • Laura Hering
  • Sandra Poncet

Abstract

This paper evaluates the role of economic geography in explaining regional wages in China. It investigates the extent to which market proximity can explain the evolution of wages, and through which channels. We construct a complete indicator of market access at the provincial level from data on domestic and international trade flows; this is introduced in a simultaneous-equations system to identify the direct and indirect effect of market access on wages. The estimation results for 29 Chinese provinces over 1995-2002 suggest that access to sources of demand is indeed an important factor shaping regional wage dynamics in China. We investigate three channels through which market access might influence wages beside direct transport-cost savings: export performance, and human and physical capital accumulation. A fair share of benefits seems to come from enhanced export performance and greater accumulation of physical capital. The main source of influence of market access remains direct transport costs.

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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by CEPII research center in its series Working Papers with number 2008-20.

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Date of creation: Oct 2008
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:cii:cepidt:2008-20

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Keywords: Economic geography; International trade; Wage; Trade openess; Capital accumulation; China;

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References

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Citations

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Cited by:
  1. Reinhold Kosfeld & Hans-Friedrich Eckey, 2008. "Market Access, Regional Price Level and Wage Disparities: The German Case," MAGKS Papers on Economics 200814, Philipps-Universität Marburg, Faculty of Business Administration and Economics, Department of Economics (Volkswirtschaftliche Abteilung).
  2. Holger Breinlich & Gianmarco I. P. Ottaviano & Jonathan R. W. Temple, 2013. "Regional Growth and Regional Decline," CEP Discussion Papers dp1232, Centre for Economic Performance, LSE.
  3. Pierre-Philippe Combes & Sylvie Démurger & Shi Li, 2013. "Urbanisation and Migration Externalities in China," AMSE Working Papers 1307, Aix-Marseille School of Economics, Marseille, France, revised 06 Feb 2013.
  4. Joachim Jarreau & Sandra Poncet, 2009. "Export Sophistication and Economic Performance: Evidence from Chinese Provinces," Working Papers 2009-34, CEPII research center.
  5. De Bruyne, Karolien, 2009. "Explaining the Location of Economic Activity. Is there a Spatial Employment Structure in Belgium?," Working Papers 2009/28, Hogeschool-Universiteit Brussel, Faculteit Economie en Management.
  6. Antoine Berthou & Lionel Fontagné, 2008. "The Euro Effects on the Firm and Product-Level Trade Margins: Evidence from France," Working Papers 2008-21, CEPII research center.
  7. Bai, Chong-En & Ma, Hong & Pan, Wenqing, 2012. "Spatial spillover and regional economic growth in China," China Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 23(4), pages 982-990.
  8. Rafael Alvarado & Miguel Atienza, 2014. "The role of market access and human capital in regional wage disparities: Empirical evidence for Ecuador," Documentos de Trabajo en Economia y Ciencia Regional 53, Universidad Catolica del Norte, Chile, Department of Economics, revised Mar 2014.

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