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Regional Inequalities in Contemporary China Measured by GDP and Consumption


  • Z Zhang
  • S Yao


This paper presents a comprehensive picture of China?s regional inequality from 1952 to 1999 using newly released data on consumption and gross domestic product (GDP) at the provincial level. Although there are many studies on regional inequality in China, this paper is the first attempt to evaluate regional inequalities before and after the economic reforms for a time span of almost half a century. Our results show that inter-regional inequality widens over time, either measured by per capita GDP or consumption expenditures, and either in the pre-reform or the post-reform period. The results also show that the choice of GDP or consumption as an indicator of economic welfare matters in regional inequality analysis. Per capita GDP is more unequally distributed than per capita consumption.

Suggested Citation

  • Z Zhang & S Yao, 2001. "Regional Inequalities in Contemporary China Measured by GDP and Consumption," Economic Issues Journal Articles, Economic Issues, vol. 6(2), pages 13-30, September.
  • Handle: RePEc:eis:articl:201zhang

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    Cited by:

    1. Huimin Xu & Hutao Yang & Xi Li & Huiran Jin & Deren Li, 2015. "Multi-Scale Measurement of Regional Inequality in Mainland China during 2005–2010 Using DMSP/OLS Night Light Imagery and Population Density Grid Data," Sustainability, MDPI, Open Access Journal, vol. 7(10), pages 1-31, September.
    2. repec:bla:growch:v:48:y:2017:i:3:p:459-486 is not listed on IDEAS
    3. Celine Bonnefond, 2014. "Growth Dynamics And Conditional Convergence Among Chinese Provinces: A Panel Data Investigation Using System Gmm Estimator," Journal of Economic Development, Chung-Ang Unviersity, Department of Economics, vol. 39(4), pages 1-25, December.

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