IDEAS home Printed from https://ideas.repec.org/a/eee/chieco/v33y2015icp50-66.html
   My bibliography  Save this article

Agglomeration and productivity in China: Firm level evidence

Author

Listed:
  • Hu, Cui
  • Xu, Zhaoyuan
  • Yashiro, Naomitsu

Abstract

This paper conducts an in-depth evaluation on the role of industrial agglomeration in productivity growth of China's industrial sector by exploiting large dataset of manufacturing firms active in 176 three-digit industries and in 2860 counties. We also complement our analysis with the 2004 Census data to capture the agglomeration of small firms. Unlike previous studies that often focused on specific industries, we assess the impact of agglomeration in a comprehensive range of industries and extend the scope of analysis to upstream industries as well. Moreover, we explore how the ownership of Chinese firms shapes their ability to benefit from agglomeration effect as well as to act as the source of externality. We find that congestion and fiercer competition offset the benefits of agglomeration for firms operating within agglomerated regions. On the other hand, a co-location of large firms contributes significantly to productivity. We also find a more important contribution from the agglomeration of upstream industries than from that of the same industry. Private enterprises are the primary source of agglomeration effects especially in upstream industries, whereas their productivity is boosted most by the agglomeration of other private enterprises. We reckon that industrial agglomeration contributed up to 14% of the productivity growth in China's industrial sector between 2000 and 2007.

Suggested Citation

  • Hu, Cui & Xu, Zhaoyuan & Yashiro, Naomitsu, 2015. "Agglomeration and productivity in China: Firm level evidence," China Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 33(C), pages 50-66.
  • Handle: RePEc:eee:chieco:v:33:y:2015:i:c:p:50-66
    DOI: 10.1016/j.chieco.2015.01.001
    as

    Download full text from publisher

    File URL: http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S1043951X15000024
    Download Restriction: Full text for ScienceDirect subscribers only

    As the access to this document is restricted, you may want to search for a different version of it.

    References listed on IDEAS

    as
    1. Wagner, Alfred, 1891. "Marshall's Principles of Economics," History of Economic Thought Articles, McMaster University Archive for the History of Economic Thought, vol. 5, pages 319-338.
    2. Greenaway, David & Kneller, Richard, 2008. "Exporting, productivity and agglomeration," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 52(5), pages 919-939, July.
    3. De Loecker, Jan, 2007. "Do exports generate higher productivity? Evidence from Slovenia," Journal of International Economics, Elsevier, vol. 73(1), pages 69-98, September.
    4. Lall, Somik V. & Shalizi, Zmarak & Deichmann, Uwe, 2004. "Agglomeration economies and productivity in Indian industry," Journal of Development Economics, Elsevier, vol. 73(2), pages 643-673, April.
    5. Shanzi Ke, 2010. "Agglomeration, productivity, and spatial spillovers across Chinese cities," The Annals of Regional Science, Springer;Western Regional Science Association, vol. 45(1), pages 157-179, August.
    6. Fleisher, Belton & Hu, Dinghuan & McGuire, William & Zhang, Xiaobo, 2010. "The evolution of an industrial cluster in China," China Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 21(3), pages 456-469, September.
    7. Giulio Cainelli & Donato Iacobucci, 2012. "Agglomeration, Related Variety, and Vertical Integration," Economic Geography, Clark University, vol. 88(3), pages 255-277, July.
    8. Christian Broda & David E. Weinstein, 2006. "Globalization and the Gains From Variety," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 121(2), pages 541-585.
    9. Batisse, Cecile, 2002. "Dynamic externalities and local growth: A panel data analysis applied to Chinese provinces," China Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 13(2-3), pages 231-251.
    10. James Levinsohn & Amil Petrin, 2003. "Estimating Production Functions Using Inputs to Control for Unobservables," Review of Economic Studies, Oxford University Press, vol. 70(2), pages 317-341.
    11. Robinson, Peter M, 1988. "Root- N-Consistent Semiparametric Regression," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 56(4), pages 931-954, July.
    12. Jefferson, Gary H. & Rawski, Thomas G. & Li, Wang & Yuxin, Zheng, 2000. "Ownership, Productivity Change, and Financial Performance in Chinese Industry," Journal of Comparative Economics, Elsevier, vol. 28(4), pages 786-813, December.
    13. Huang, Zuhui & Zhang, Xiaobo & Zhu, Yunwei, 2008. "The role of clustering in rural industrialization: A case study of the footwear industry in Wenzhou," China Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 19(3), pages 409-420, September.
    14. Henderson, J. Vernon, 2003. "Marshall's scale economies," Journal of Urban Economics, Elsevier, vol. 53(1), pages 1-28, January.
    15. Paul Krugman & Anthony J. Venables, 1995. "Globalization and the Inequality of Nations," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 110(4), pages 857-880.
    16. Michael Greenstone & Richard Hornbeck & Enrico Moretti, 2010. "Identifying Agglomeration Spillovers: Evidence from Winners and Losers of Large Plant Openings," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 118(3), pages 536-598, June.
    17. Nicholas Bloom & Renata Lemos & Raffaella Sadun & Daniela Scur & John Van Reenen, 2014. "The New Empirical Economics of Management," Discussion Papers 13-031, Stanford Institute for Economic Policy Research.
    18. Ellison, Glenn & Glaeser, Edward L, 1997. "Geographic Concentration in U.S. Manufacturing Industries: A Dartboard Approach," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 105(5), pages 889-927, October.
    19. Brandt, Loren & Van Biesebroeck, Johannes & Zhang, Yifan, 2012. "Creative accounting or creative destruction? Firm-level productivity growth in Chinese manufacturing," Journal of Development Economics, Elsevier, vol. 97(2), pages 339-351.
    20. Ito, Banri & Yashiro, Naomitsu & Xu, Zhaoyuan & Chen, XiaoHong & Wakasugi, Ryuhei, 2012. "How do Chinese industries benefit from FDI spillovers?," China Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 23(2), pages 342-356.
    21. Chunlin Zhang & Douglas Zhihua Zeng & William Peter Mako & James Seward, 2009. "Promoting Enterprise-led Innovation in China," World Bank Publications, The World Bank, number 2619, October.
    22. Li, Dongya & Lu, Yi & Wu, Mingqin, 2012. "Industrial agglomeration and firm size: Evidence from China," Regional Science and Urban Economics, Elsevier, vol. 42(1-2), pages 135-143.
    23. Adam B. Jaffe & Manuel Trajtenberg & Rebecca Henderson, 1993. "Geographic Localization of Knowledge Spillovers as Evidenced by Patent Citations," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 108(3), pages 577-598.
    24. repec:hhs:iuiwop:430 is not listed on IDEAS
    25. Olley, G Steven & Pakes, Ariel, 1996. "The Dynamics of Productivity in the Telecommunications Equipment Industry," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 64(6), pages 1263-1297, November.
    26. Richard E. Baldwin & Toshihiro Okubo, 2006. "Heterogeneous firms, agglomeration and economic geography: spatial selection and sorting," Journal of Economic Geography, Oxford University Press, vol. 6(3), pages 323-346, June.
    27. Cohen, Wesley M & Levinthal, Daniel A, 1989. "Innovation and Learning: The Two Faces of R&D," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 99(397), pages 569-596, September.
    28. Davis, Donald R. & Weinstein, David E., 1999. "Economic geography and regional production structure: An empirical investigation," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 43(2), pages 379-407, February.
    29. Robert C. Feenstra & Zhiyuan Li & Miaojie Yu, 2014. "Exports and Credit Constraints under Incomplete Information: Theory and Evidence from China," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 96(4), pages 729-744, October.
    30. Bai, Chong-En & Du, Yingjuan & Tao, Zhigang & Tong, Sarah Y., 2004. "Local protectionism and regional specialization: evidence from China's industries," Journal of International Economics, Elsevier, vol. 63(2), pages 397-417, July.
    31. Long, Cheryl & Zhang, Xiaobo, 2012. "Patterns of China's industrialization: Concentration, specialization, and clustering," China Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 23(3), pages 593-612.
    32. Sonobe, Tetsushi & Hu, Dinghuan & Otsuka, Keijiro, 2004. "From inferior to superior products: an inquiry into the Wenzhou model of industrial development in China," Journal of Comparative Economics, Elsevier, vol. 32(3), pages 542-563, September.
    33. Rosenthal, Stuart S. & Strange, William C., 2001. "The Determinants of Agglomeration," Journal of Urban Economics, Elsevier, vol. 50(2), pages 191-229, September.
    34. Thomas J. Holmes, 1999. "Localization Of Industry And Vertical Disintegration," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 81(2), pages 314-325, May.
    35. Lin, Hui-Lin & Li, Hsiao-Yun & Yang, Chih-Hai, 2011. "Agglomeration and productivity: Firm-level evidence from China's textile industry," China Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 22(3), pages 313-329, September.
    36. Rosenthal, Stuart S. & Strange, William C., 2004. "Evidence on the nature and sources of agglomeration economies," Handbook of Regional and Urban Economics,in: J. V. Henderson & J. F. Thisse (ed.), Handbook of Regional and Urban Economics, edition 1, volume 4, chapter 49, pages 2119-2171 Elsevier.
    37. Beata Smarzynska Javorcik, 2004. "Does Foreign Direct Investment Increase the Productivity of Domestic Firms? In Search of Spillovers Through Backward Linkages," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 94(3), pages 605-627, June.
    38. Nicholas Bloom & Renata Lemos & Raffaella Sadun & Daniela Scur & John Reenen, 2014. "Jeea-Fbbva Lecture 2013: The New Empirical Economics Of Management," Journal of the European Economic Association, European Economic Association, vol. 12(4), pages 835-876, August.
    Full references (including those not matched with items on IDEAS)

    Citations

    Citations are extracted by the CitEc Project, subscribe to its RSS feed for this item.
    as


    Cited by:

    1. Tan, Yong & Zhao, Chen, 2017. "New Exporters and Continuing Exporters under Exchange Rate Fluctuations," MPRA Paper 77244, University Library of Munich, Germany.
    2. Hu, Cui & Tan, Yong, 2017. "Learning to Import From Neighbors," MPRA Paper 78108, University Library of Munich, Germany.
    3. Hu, Cui & Parsley, David & Tan, Yong, 2017. "Exchange Rate Induced Export Quality Upgrading: A Firm-Level Perspective," MPRA Paper 80506, University Library of Munich, Germany.
    4. repec:spr:anresc:v:59:y:2017:i:1:d:10.1007_s00168-017-0824-7 is not listed on IDEAS
    5. Sun, Puyang & Hou, Xinyu & Tan, Yong, 2017. "Export Rivalry and Exchange Rate Pass-Through," MPRA Paper 83369, University Library of Munich, Germany.

    More about this item

    Keywords

    Agglomeration; Productivity; China;

    JEL classification:

    • D24 - Microeconomics - - Production and Organizations - - - Production; Cost; Capital; Capital, Total Factor, and Multifactor Productivity; Capacity
    • R12 - Urban, Rural, Regional, Real Estate, and Transportation Economics - - General Regional Economics - - - Size and Spatial Distributions of Regional Economic Activity; Interregional Trade (economic geography)

    Statistics

    Access and download statistics

    Corrections

    All material on this site has been provided by the respective publishers and authors. You can help correct errors and omissions. When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:eee:chieco:v:33:y:2015:i:c:p:50-66. See general information about how to correct material in RePEc.

    For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (Dana Niculescu). General contact details of provider: http://www.elsevier.com/locate/chieco .

    If you have authored this item and are not yet registered with RePEc, we encourage you to do it here. This allows to link your profile to this item. It also allows you to accept potential citations to this item that we are uncertain about.

    If CitEc recognized a reference but did not link an item in RePEc to it, you can help with this form .

    If you know of missing items citing this one, you can help us creating those links by adding the relevant references in the same way as above, for each refering item. If you are a registered author of this item, you may also want to check the "citations" tab in your RePEc Author Service profile, as there may be some citations waiting for confirmation.

    Please note that corrections may take a couple of weeks to filter through the various RePEc services.

    IDEAS is a RePEc service hosted by the Research Division of the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis . RePEc uses bibliographic data supplied by the respective publishers.