Understanding Chinese consumption: The impact of hukou
AbstractCapital investment and exports have driven China’s remarkable economic growth for decades, but recent trends have put pressure on the government to move to a more consumption-driven model of growth. Unfortunately, China’s institutional framework does little at the moment to spur household consumption. While the country’s weak social security setup and highly regulated financial markets are routinely cited as disincentives to private consumption, the role of the hukou household registration system in depressing consumption gets less attention. Controlling for income levels on datasets from 2002 and 2007, we show the average propensity to consume is significantly lower for internal migrants to cities. Official figures suggest that China in 2013 had about 260 million internal migrants. These individuals are often separated from their families for long periods and denied access to public services in the cities where they work. The government’s current urbanization strategy calls for increasing migrant populations in cities, which, in the absence of hukou reform, is likely to further dampen consumption.
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Bibliographic InfoPaper provided by Bank of Finland, Institute for Economies in Transition in its series BOFIT Discussion Papers with number 7/2014.
Length: 19 pages
Date of creation: 17 Feb 2014
Date of revision:
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Chinese private consumption; urbanization strategy; hukou system;
Other versions of this item:
- Christian Dreger & Tongsan Wang & Yanqun Zhang, 2013. "Understanding Chinese Consumption: The Impact of Hukou," Discussion Papers of DIW Berlin 1341, DIW Berlin, German Institute for Economic Research.
- Dreger, Christian & Wang, Tongsan & Zhang, Yanqun, 2013. "Understanding Chinese Consumption: The Impact of Hukou," IZA Discussion Papers 7819, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
- Dreger, Christian & Wang, Tongsan & Zhang, Yanqun, 2013. "Understanding Chinese consumption: The impact of hukou," Discussion Papers 343, European University Viadrina Frankfurt (Oder), Department of Business Administration and Economics.
- E21 - Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics - - Consumption, Saving, Production, Employment, and Investment - - - Consumption; Saving; Wealth
- O15 - Economic Development, Technological Change, and Growth - - Economic Development - - - Economic Development: Human Resources; Human Development; Income Distribution; Migration
- R23 - Urban, Rural, Regional, Real Estate, and Transportation Economics - - Household Analysis - - - Regional Migration; Regional Labor Markets; Population
This paper has been announced in the following NEP Reports:
- NEP-ALL-2014-03-30 (All new papers)
- NEP-MAC-2014-03-30 (Macroeconomics)
- NEP-TRA-2014-03-30 (Transition Economics)
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