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Evolution of tubewell ownership and production in the North China Plain


  • Jinxia Wang
  • Jikun Huang
  • Scott Rozelle


The overall aim of the present paper is to better understand the evolution of tubewell ownership in the North China Plain, especially focusing on the factors that determine ownership and its effect on production. Based on a random sample of 30 villages in three counties in the Hai River Basin, our results show that collectively owned tubewells have been gradually privatised. The analyses demonstrate that increasing water and land scarcity and policy intervention (mainly fiscal and financial subsidies for tubewell investment) leads to the observed shifts in tubewell ownership patterns. The results also show that the privatisation of tubewells has affected cropping patterns in the North China Plain. When villages shift towards private tubewells, farmers move into more water-sensitive and high-value crops. Privatisation, however, has no negative effect on crop productivity in the present sample. Importantly, the evolution of tubewell ownership in the villages studied does not accelerate the fall of the groundwater table. Copyright 2005 Australian Agricultural and Resource Economics Society Inc. and Blackwell Publishing Asia Pty Ltd..

Suggested Citation

  • Jinxia Wang & Jikun Huang & Scott Rozelle, 2005. "Evolution of tubewell ownership and production in the North China Plain ," Australian Journal of Agricultural and Resource Economics, Australian Agricultural and Resource Economics Society, vol. 49(2), pages 177-195, June.
  • Handle: RePEc:bla:ajarec:v:49:y:2005:i:2:p:177-195

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    References listed on IDEAS

    1. Masako Fujiie & Yujiro Hayami & Masao Kikuchi, 2005. "The conditions of collective action for local commons management: the case of irrigation in the Philippines," Agricultural Economics, International Association of Agricultural Economists, vol. 33(2), pages 179-189, September.
    2. Otsuka, Keijiro & Place, Frank, 2001. "Land tenure and natural resource management," Food policy statements 34, International Food Policy Research Institute (IFPRI).
    3. Meinzen-Dick, Ruth Suseela, 1996. "Groundwater markets in Pakistan: participation and productivity," Research reports 105, International Food Policy Research Institute (IFPRI).
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    1. Wang, J. & Huang, J. & Blanke, A. & Huang, Q. & Rozelle, S., 2007. "The development, challenges and management of groundwater in rural China," IWMI Books, Reports H040041, International Water Management Institute.
    2. Huang, Qiuqiong & Rozelle, Scott & Wang, Jinxia & Huang, Jikun, 2009. "Water management institutional reform: A representative look at northern China," Agricultural Water Management, Elsevier, vol. 96(2), pages 215-225, February.
    3. Blanke, Amelia & Rozelle, Scott & Lohmar, Bryan & Wang, Jinxia & Huang, Jikun, 2005. "Rural Water Saving Technology Adoption in Northern China: An Analysis of Survey Data," 2005 Annual meeting, July 24-27, Providence, RI 19437, American Agricultural Economics Association (New Name 2008: Agricultural and Applied Economics Association).
    4. Fang, Q.X. & Ma, L. & Green, T.R. & Yu, Q. & Wang, T.D. & Ahuja, L.R., 2010. "Water resources and water use efficiency in the North China Plain: Current status and agronomic management options," Agricultural Water Management, Elsevier, vol. 97(8), pages 1102-1116, August.
    5. Zhang, Lijuan & Wang, Jinxia & Huang, Jikun & Rozelle, Scott, 2006. "Groundwater Entrepreneurs in China: Selling Water to Meet the Demand for Water," 2006 Annual Meeting, August 12-18, 2006, Queensland, Australia 25605, International Association of Agricultural Economists.
    6. Qiuqiong Huang & Jinxia Wang & Scott Rozelle & Stephen Polasky & Yang Liu, 2013. "The Effects of Well Management and the Nature of the Aquifer on Groundwater Resources," American Journal of Agricultural Economics, Agricultural and Applied Economics Association, vol. 95(1), pages 94-116.
    7. Zhang, Lijuan & Wang, Jinxia & Huang, Jikun & Huang, Qiuqiong & Rozelle, Scott, 2010. "Access to groundwater and agricultural production in China," Agricultural Water Management, Elsevier, vol. 97(10), pages 1609-1616, October.
    8. Lohmar, B. & Huang, Q. & Lei, B. & Gao, Z., 2007. "Water pricing policies and recent reforms in China: the conflict between conservation and other policy goals," IWMI Books, Reports H040610, International Water Management Institute.
    9. Xin Yang & Michael Burton & Yinying Cai & Anlu Zhang, 2015. "Exploring Heterogeneous Preference for Farmland Non-market Values in Wuhan, Central China," Sustainability, MDPI, Open Access Journal, vol. 8(1), pages 1-13, December.
    10. Jikun Huang & Scott Rozelle, 2010. "Agricultural Development, Nutrition, and the Policies Behind China's Success," Asian Journal of Agriculture and Development, Southeast Asian Regional Center for Graduate Study and Research in Agriculture (SEARCA), vol. 7(1), pages 93-126, June.
    11. Zhang, Lijuan & Wang, Jinxia & Huang, Jikun & Rozelle, Scott, 2008. "Development of Groundwater Markets in China: A Glimpse into Progress to Date," World Development, Elsevier, vol. 36(4), pages 706-726, April.
    12. Huang, Jikun & Rozelle, Scott & Martin, William J. & Liu, Yu, 2007. "Distortions to Agricultural Incentives in China," Agricultural Distortions Working Paper 48478, World Bank.
    13. Huang, Qiuqiong & Rozelle, Scott & Howitt, Richard E. & Wang, Jinxia & Huang, Jikun, 2006. "Irrigation Water Pricing Policy in China," 2006 Annual meeting, July 23-26, Long Beach, CA 21241, American Agricultural Economics Association (New Name 2008: Agricultural and Applied Economics Association).
    14. Blanke, Amelia & Rozelle, Scott & Lohmar, Bryan & Wang, Jinxia & Huang, Jikun, 2007. "Water saving technology and saving water in China," Agricultural Water Management, Elsevier, vol. 87(2), pages 139-150, January.
    15. repec:gam:jsusta:v:8:y:2015:i:1:p:12:d:61147 is not listed on IDEAS
    16. Songqing Jin & Hengyun Ma & Jikun Huang & Ruifa Hu & Scott Rozelle, 2010. "Productivity, efficiency and technical change: measuring the performance of China’s transforming agriculture," Journal of Productivity Analysis, Springer, vol. 33(3), pages 191-207, June.
    17. Qu, Futian & Kuyvenhoven, Arie & Shi, Xiaoping & Heerink, Nico, 2011. "Sustainable natural resource use in rural China: Recent trends and policies," China Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 22(4), pages 444-460.

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