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Energy Consumption and Economic Activity in China


  • Chuanlong Tang
  • Sumner J. La Croix


This paper uses province-level cross-section data to explore the relationship between energy consumption and economic activity in China. Our key finding is that the income elasticity of energy consumption is approximately 1.0. When a province exports energy or has significant amounts of heavy industry, its energy consumption is higher. However, income elasticities are similar across energy exporting and -importing provinces. Energy consumption is lower in coastal provinces than inland provinces, but the income elasticity is higher in the rapidly developing coastal provinces. We conclude that China's economy is unlikely to become significantly more energy-intensive during the 1990s.

Suggested Citation

  • Chuanlong Tang & Sumner J. La Croix, 1993. "Energy Consumption and Economic Activity in China," The Energy Journal, International Association for Energy Economics, vol. 0(Number 4), pages 21-36.
  • Handle: RePEc:aen:journl:1993v14-04-a02

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    References listed on IDEAS

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    Cited by:

    1. Michieka, Nyakundi M. & Fletcher, Jerald J., 2012. "An investigation of the role of China's urban population on coal consumption," Energy Policy, Elsevier, vol. 48(C), pages 668-676.
    2. Bukhari M.S. Sillah & Hamad M.H. Al-Sheikh, 2012. "Income, Price, and Government Expenditure Elasticities of Oil in the Gulf Cooperation Council Countries," International Journal of Energy Economics and Policy, Econjournals, vol. 2(4), pages 333-341.
    3. Jin Zhang and David C. Broadstock, 2016. "The Causality between Energy Consumption and Economic Growth for China in a Time-varying Framework," The Energy Journal, International Association for Energy Economics, vol. 0(China Spe).
    4. Cattaneo, Cristina & Manera, Matteo & Scarpa, Elisa, 2011. "Industrial coal demand in China: A provincial analysis," Resource and Energy Economics, Elsevier, vol. 33(1), pages 12-35, January.
    5. Ramírez, C.A. & Patel, M. & Blok, K., 2005. "The non-energy intensive manufacturing sector," Energy, Elsevier, vol. 30(5), pages 749-767.
    6. Ma, Hengyun & Oxley, Les & Gibson, John, 2010. "China's energy economy: A survey of the literature," Economic Systems, Elsevier, vol. 34(2), pages 105-132, June.
    7. Masih, Rumi & Masih, Abul M. M., 1996. "Stock-Watson dynamic OLS (DOLS) and error-correction modelling approaches to estimating long- and short-run elasticities in a demand function: new evidence and methodological implications from an appl," Energy Economics, Elsevier, vol. 18(4), pages 315-334, October.

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    JEL classification:

    • F0 - International Economics - - General


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