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Industrialization and spatial income inequality in rural China, 1986-92


  • Shujie Yao


Rural industrialization has been a dominant factor responsible for China's rapid economic growth over the last 18 years, but it has been accompanied by increased inter-regional income inequality. Using the most recent rural income data and two alternative Gini coefficient decomposition methods, this study finds that income inequality, especially inter-regional income inequality increased significantly in the period 1986-92. More than half of national income inequality was due to its inter-provincial component, and three quarters of inter-provincial inequality was due to its inter-zonal component. Uneven development of township and village enterprises has been a major cause of increased regional income inequality. Copyright The European Bank for Reconstruction and Development, 1997.

Suggested Citation

  • Shujie Yao, 1997. "Industrialization and spatial income inequality in rural China, 1986-92," The Economics of Transition, The European Bank for Reconstruction and Development, vol. 5(1), pages 97-112, May.
  • Handle: RePEc:bla:etrans:v:5:y:1997:i:1:p:97-112

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    References listed on IDEAS

    1. Shujie Yao & Jirui Liu, 1996. "Decomposition of Gini coefficients by class: a new approach," Applied Economics Letters, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 3(2), pages 115-119.
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    Cited by:

    1. Li, Yuheng, 2012. "Rural Household Income in China: Spatial-Temporal Disparity and Its Interpretation," Working Paper Series 2012-21, Stockholm School of Economics, China Economic Research Center.
    2. Kanbur, Ravi & Zhang, Xiaobo, 1999. "Which Regional Inequality? The Evolution of Rural-Urban and Inland-Coastal Inequality in China from 1983 to 1995," Journal of Comparative Economics, Elsevier, vol. 27(4), pages 686-701, December.
    3. Wan, Guanghua & Zhou, Zhangyue, 2004. "Income Inequality in Rural China: Regression-based Decomposition Using Household Data," WIDER Working Paper Series 051, World Institute for Development Economic Research (UNU-WIDER).
    4. Cheong, Tsun Se & Wu, Yanrui, 2014. "The impacts of structural transformation and industrial upgrading on regional inequality in China," China Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 31(C), pages 339-350.
    5. James Alm & Yongzheng Liu, 2014. "China's Tax-for-Fee Reform and Village Inequality," Oxford Development Studies, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 42(1), pages 38-64, March.
    6. Tsun Se Cheong & Yanrui Wu, 2013. "Globalization and Regional Inequality," Economics Discussion / Working Papers 13-10, The University of Western Australia, Department of Economics.
    7. Kanbur, Ravi & Zhang, Xiao-Bo, 1998. "Which Regional Inequality? The Evolution of Rural-Urban and Inland-Coastal Inequality in China, 1983-1995," Working Papers 179359, Cornell University, Department of Applied Economics and Management.

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