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The impact of economic geography on wages: Disentangling the channels of influence

  • Laura Hering

    ()

    (CES - Centre d'économie de la Sorbonne - CNRS : UMR8174 - Université Paris I - Panthéon-Sorbonne)

  • Sandra Poncet

    ()

    (CES - Centre d'économie de la Sorbonne - CNRS : UMR8174 - Université Paris I - Panthéon-Sorbonne)

This paper evaluates the role of economic geography in explaining regional wages in China. It investigates the extent to which market proximity can explain the evolution of wages, and through which channels. We construct a complete indicator of market access at the provincial level from data on domestic and international trade flows; this is introduced in a simultaneous-equations system to identify the direct and indirect effect of market access on wages. The estimation results for 29 Chinese provinces over 1995-2002 suggest that access to sources of demand is indeed an important factor shaping regionalwage dynamics in China. We investigate three channels through which market access might influence wages beside direct transport-cost savings: export performance, and human and physical capital accumulation. A fair share of benefits seems to come from enhanced export performance and greater accumulation of physical capital. The main source of influence of market access remains direct transport costs.

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Paper provided by HAL in its series Université Paris1 Panthéon-Sorbonne (Post-Print and Working Papers) with number hal-00633816.

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Date of creation: 2009
Date of revision:
Publication status: Published, China Economic Review, 2009, 20, 1, 1-14
Handle: RePEc:hal:cesptp:hal-00633816
Note: View the original document on HAL open archive server: http://hal.archives-ouvertes.fr/hal-00633816
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  1. Alberto Alesina & Enrico Spolaore & Romain Wacziarg, 1997. "Economic Integration and Political Disintegration," NBER Working Papers 6163, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  2. José De Sousa & Sandra Poncet, 2007. "How are Wages set in Beijing?," Working Papers 2007-13, CEPII research center.
  3. Wing Thye Woo & Robert Feenstra & Wen Hai & Shunli Yao, 2003. "The U.S.-China Bilateral Trade Balance: It'S Size And Determinants," Working Papers 989, University of California, Davis, Department of Economics.
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  5. Edwards, Sebastian, 1992. "Trade orientation, distortions and growth in developing countries," Journal of Development Economics, Elsevier, vol. 39(1), pages 31-57, July.
  6. De Bruyne, Karolien, 2009. "Explaining the Location of Economic Activity. Is there a Spatial Employment Structure in Belgium?," Working Papers 2009/28, Hogeschool-Universiteit Brussel, Faculteit Economie en Management.
  7. Meng, Xin & Gregory, Bob & Wang, Youjuan, 2005. "Poverty, Inequality, and Growth in Urban China, 1986-2000," IZA Discussion Papers 1452, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
  8. Laura Hering & Sandra Poncet, 2010. "Income Per Capita Inequality in China: The Role of Economic Geography and Spatial Interactions," The World Economy, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 33(5), pages 655-679, 05.
  9. Bowsher, Clive G., 2002. "On testing overidentifying restrictions in dynamic panel data models," Economics Letters, Elsevier, vol. 77(2), pages 211-220, October.
  10. Krugman, Paul R & Venables, Anthony J, 1995. "Globalization and the Inequality of Nations," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 110(4), pages 857-80, November.
  11. Laura Hering & Sandra Poncet, 2010. "Market access and individual wages: evidence from China," Université Paris1 Panthéon-Sorbonne (Post-Print and Working Papers) hal-00633785, HAL.
  12. J. Andres Faina & J. Lopez-Rodriguez, 2006. "Market access and human capital accumulation: the European Union case," Applied Economics Letters, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 13(9), pages 563-567.
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