IDEAS home Printed from https://ideas.repec.org/p/hhs/gunwpe/0030.html
   My bibliography  Save this paper

Efficiency, Technical Progress, and Best Practice in Chinese State Enterprises (1980-1994)

Author

Listed:
  • Zheng, Jinghai

    (Department of Economics, School of Economics and Commercial Law, Göteborg University)

  • Liu, Xiaxuan

    (Institute of Economics)

  • Bigsten, Arne

    (Department of Economics, School of Economics and Commercial Law, Göteborg University)

Abstract

In spite of rapid economic growth and swift structural change during the last two decades, China’s industrial reform is far from complete, especially with regard to state enterprises (SOEs). Although troubled with huge financial losses, heavy debt, and substantial over-staffing, SOEs will continue to play a crucial part in the government policy to maintain social stability and economic growth in China. This study, based on samples of about 700 state enterprises during 1980-94, investigates productivity performance of the SOEs using Data Envelopment Analysis and Malmquist Index. Our empirical results show that average technical efficiency had been low among the sample SOEs. Considerable productivity growth was found, but it was mainly accomplished through technical progress rather than efficiency improvement. Regression analyses indicate that wage incentives and education had positive impacts on productivity growth, while large scale was an important determinant of whether an SOE was applying best practice technology. It is also shown that large SOEs were more likely to generate technical progress. These findings are consistent with the industrial structural adjustment program initiated by the government in 1994, which has focused on improving productive efficiency via redundancies and technology upgrading, and on building its best SOEs into conglomerates.

Suggested Citation

  • Zheng, Jinghai & Liu, Xiaxuan & Bigsten, Arne, 2000. "Efficiency, Technical Progress, and Best Practice in Chinese State Enterprises (1980-1994)," Working Papers in Economics 30, University of Gothenburg, Department of Economics.
  • Handle: RePEc:hhs:gunwpe:0030
    as

    Download full text from publisher

    File URL: http://swopec.hhs.se/gunwpe/papers/gunwpe0030.pdf
    File Function: Complete Rendering
    Download Restriction: no
    ---><---

    Other versions of this item:

    References listed on IDEAS

    as
    1. Woo Wing Thye & Hai Wen & Jin Yibiao & Fan Gang, 1994. "How Successful Has Chinese Enterprise Reform Been? Pitfalls in Opposite Biases and Focus," Journal of Comparative Economics, Elsevier, vol. 18(3), pages 410-437, June.
    2. Forsund, Finn R & Hjalmarsson, Lennart, 1979. "Generalised Farrell Measures of Efficiency: An Application to Milk Processing in Swedish Dairy Plants," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 89(354), pages 294-315, June.
    3. Guofu Tan & Justin Yifu Lin, 1999. "Policy Burdens, Accountability, and the Soft Budget Constraint," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 89(2), pages 426-431, May.
    4. Lau, Kam-Tim & Brada, Josef C., 1990. "Technological progress and technical efficiency in Chinese industrial growth: A frontier production function approach," China Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 1(2), pages 113-124.
    5. Smyth, Russell, 2000. "Should China be Promoting Large-Scale Enterprises and Enterprise Groups?," World Development, Elsevier, vol. 28(4), pages 721-737, April.
    6. Li, David D. & Liang, Minsong, 1998. "Causes of the Soft Budget Constraint: Evidence on Three Explanations," Journal of Comparative Economics, Elsevier, vol. 26(1), pages 104-116, March.
    7. Mao, Weining & Koo, Won W., 1997. "Productivity growth, technological progress, and efficiency change in chinese agriculture after rural economic reforms: A DEA approach," China Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 8(2), pages 157-174.
    8. Zheng, Jinghai & Liu, Xiaoxuan & Bigsten, Arne, 1998. "Ownership Structure and Determinants of Technical Efficiency: An Application of Data Envelopment Analysis to Chinese Enterprises (1986-1990)," Journal of Comparative Economics, Elsevier, vol. 26(3), pages 465-484, September.
    9. Jefferson, Gary H. & Rawski, Thomas G. & Zheng, Yuxin, 1996. "Chinese Industrial Productivity: Trends, Measurement Issues, and Recent Developments," Journal of Comparative Economics, Elsevier, vol. 23(2), pages 146-180, October.
    10. Lee, Young, 1999. "Wages and Employment in China's SOEs, 1980-1994: Corporatization, Market Development, and Insider Forces," Journal of Comparative Economics, Elsevier, vol. 27(4), pages 702-729, December.
    11. Xiao-yuan Dong & Louis Putterman, 2001. "On the Emergence of Labour Redundancy in China's State Industry: Findings from a 1980-1994 Data Panel," Comparative Economic Studies, Palgrave Macmillan;Association for Comparative Economic Studies, vol. 43(2), pages 111-128, July.
    12. Haishun Sun & Phillip Hone & Hristos Doucouliago, 1999. "Economic openness and technical efficiency: A case study of Chinese manufacturing industries," The Economics of Transition, The European Bank for Reconstruction and Development, vol. 7(3), pages 615-636, November.
    13. Fare, Rolf & Shawna Grosskopf & Mary Norris & Zhongyang Zhang, 1994. "Productivity Growth, Technical Progress, and Efficiency Change in Industrialized Countries," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 84(1), pages 66-83, March.
    14. Lee, Young, 1997. "Bank Loans, Self-Financing, and Grants in Chinese SOEs: Optimal Policy under Incomplete Information," Journal of Comparative Economics, Elsevier, vol. 24(2), pages 140-160, April.
    15. Liu, Zinan & Liu, Guy Shaojia, 1996. "The Efficiency Impact of the Chinese Industrial Reforms in the 1980's," Journal of Comparative Economics, Elsevier, vol. 23(3), pages 237-255, December.
    16. Zhang, Anming & Zhang, Yimin & Zhao, Ronald, 2001. "Impact of Ownership and Competition on the Productivity of Chinese Enterprises," Journal of Comparative Economics, Elsevier, vol. 29(2), pages 327-346, June.
    17. Li, Wei, 1997. "The Impact of Economic Reform on the Performance of Chinese State Enterprises, 1980-1989," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 105(5), pages 1080-1106, October.
    18. Yanrui Wu, 1993. "Productive Efficiency in Chinese Industry," Asian-Pacific Economic Literature, The Crawford School, The Australian National University, vol. 7(2), pages 58-66, November.
    19. Lin, Justin Yifu & Cai, Fang & Li, Zhou, 1998. "Competition, Policy Burdens, and State-Owned Enterprise Reform," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 88(2), pages 422-427, May.
    20. Nolan, Peter & Xiaoqiang, Wang, 1999. "Beyond privatization: Institutional innovation and growth in China's large state-owned enterprises," World Development, Elsevier, vol. 27(1), pages 169-200, January.
    21. Ling Li, 1998. "Book Review: The China Miracle: Development Strategy and Economic Reform by Justin Yifu Lin, Fang Cai, and Zhou Li," Cato Journal, Cato Journal, Cato Institute, vol. 18(1), pages 147-150, Spring/Su.
    22. Gary Jefferson & Bai Huamao & Guan Xiaojing & Yu Xiaoyun, 2006. "R&D Performance in Chinese industry," Economics of Innovation and New Technology, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 15(4-5), pages 345-366.
    23. Wu Yanrui, 1994. "Productivity Growth, Technological Progress and Technical Efficiency Change in China: A Three-Sector Analysis," Chinese Economies Research Centre (CERC) Working Papers 1994-05, University of Adelaide, Chinese Economies Research Centre.
    24. Theodore Groves & Yongmiao Hong & John McMillan & Barry Naughton, 1994. "Autonomy and Incentives in Chinese State Enterprises," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, President and Fellows of Harvard College, vol. 109(1), pages 183-209.
    25. Cornwell, Christopher & Schmidt, Peter & Sickles, Robin C., 1990. "Production frontiers with cross-sectional and time-series variation in efficiency levels," Journal of Econometrics, Elsevier, vol. 46(1-2), pages 185-200.
    26. Groves, Theodore & Yongmiao Hong & John McMillan & Barry Naughton, 1995. "China's Evolving Managerial Labor Market," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 103(4), pages 873-892, August.
    27. Joseph Stiglitz, 1999. "Quis Custodiet Ipsos Custodes?," Challenge, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 42(6), pages 26-67, November.
    28. W, Y, 1995. "Productivity Growth, Technological Progress, and Technical Efficiency Change in China: A Three-Sector Analysis1," Journal of Comparative Economics, Elsevier, vol. 21(2), pages 207-229, October.
    Full references (including those not matched with items on IDEAS)

    Most related items

    These are the items that most often cite the same works as this one and are cited by the same works as this one.
    1. Sean M. Dougherty & Robert H. McGuckin, 2001. "The Effect of Ownership Structure and Jurisdictional Governance on Productivity in Chinese Enterprises," Economics Program Working Papers 02-01, The Conference Board, Economics Program, revised Jan 2002.
    2. Chongwoo Choe & Xiangkang Yin, 2000. "Do China's State‐Owned Enterprises Maximize Profit?," The Economic Record, The Economic Society of Australia, vol. 76(234), pages 273-284, September.
    3. Choe, Chongwoo & Yin, Xiangkang, 2000. "Contract management responsibility system and profit incentives in China's state-owned enterprises," China Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 11(1), pages 98-112.
    4. Y. Wu, 1997. "Productivity & Efficiency: Evidence from the Chinese regional economies," Economics Discussion / Working Papers 97-18, The University of Western Australia, Department of Economics.
    5. Wu, Yanrui, 2000. "Is China's economic growth sustainable? A productivity analysis," China Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 11(3), pages 278-296.
    6. Jeffrey Sachs & Wing Thye Woo, 2003. "China's Economic Growth After WTO Membership," Journal of Chinese Economic and Business Studies, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 1(1), pages 1-31.
    7. Ito, Junichi, 2006. "Economic and institutional reform packages and their impact on productivity: A case study of Chinese township and village enterprises," Journal of Comparative Economics, Elsevier, vol. 34(1), pages 167-190, March.
    8. Robert Elliott & Ying Zhou, 2013. "State-owned Enterprises, Exporting and Productivity in China: A Stochastic Dominance Approach," The World Economy, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 36(8), pages 1000-1028, August.
    9. Yanrui Wu, 2002. "Technical Efficiency and Its Determinants in Chinese Manufacturing Sector," Economics Discussion / Working Papers 02-15, The University of Western Australia, Department of Economics.
    10. Bai, Chong-En & Liu, Qiao & Lu, Joe & Song, Frank M. & Zhang, Junxi, 2004. "Corporate governance and market valuation in China," Journal of Comparative Economics, Elsevier, vol. 32(4), pages 599-616, December.
    11. Lixin Colin Xu & Tian Zhu & Yi‐min Lin, 2005. "Politician control, agency problems and ownership reform," The Economics of Transition, The European Bank for Reconstruction and Development, vol. 13(1), pages 1-24, January.
    12. Alberto GABRIELE, 2001. "Science And Technology Policies, Industrial Reform And Technical Progress In China. Can Socialist Property Rights Be Compatible With Technological Catching Up?," UNCTAD Discussion Papers 155, United Nations Conference on Trade and Development.
    13. H. Ahammad, 1998. "The Economics of the WA Minerals Sector : An overview of ERC research," Economics Discussion / Working Papers 98-18, The University of Western Australia, Department of Economics.
    14. Cull, Robert & Xu, Lixin Colin, 2003. "Who gets credit? The behavior of bureaucrats and state banks in allocating credit to Chinese state-owned enterprises," Journal of Development Economics, Elsevier, vol. 71(2), pages 533-559, August.
    15. Xu, Cheng-Gang, 2010. "The Institutional Foundations of China?s Reforms and Development," CEPR Discussion Papers 7654, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
    16. Bai, Chong-En & Liu, Qiao & Lu, Joe & Song, Frank M. & Zhang, Junxi, 2004. "Corporate governance and market valuation in China," Journal of Comparative Economics, Elsevier, vol. 32(4), pages 599-616, December.
    17. Wing Thye Woo, 2003. "Recent Claims of China's Economic Exceptionalism: Reflections Inspired by WTO Accession," Working Papers 321, University of California, Davis, Department of Economics.
    18. Sun, Qunyan & Zhang, Anming & Li, Jie, 2005. "A study of optimal state shares in mixed oligopoly: Implications for SOE reform and foreign competition," China Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 16(1), pages 1-27.
    19. Bischoff, Ivo, 2002. "Efficiency-Enhancing Effects Of Private And Collective Enterprises In Transitional China," Discussion Papers 26467, University of Giessen, Center for International Development and Environmental Research.
    20. Zhang, Anming & Zhang, Yimin & Zhao, Ronald, 2002. "Profitability and productivity of Chinese industrial firms: Measurement and ownership implications," China Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 13(1), pages 65-88.

    More about this item

    Keywords

    Efficiency; productivity; technical progress; state enterprises; reform;
    All these keywords.

    JEL classification:

    • D20 - Microeconomics - - Production and Organizations - - - General
    • P20 - Political Economy and Comparative Economic Systems - - Socialist and Transition Economies - - - General

    NEP fields

    This paper has been announced in the following NEP Reports:

    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:hhs:gunwpe:0030. See general information about how to correct material in RePEc.

    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 bibliographic 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.

    For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: Ann-Christin Räätäri Nyström (email available below). General contact details of provider: https://edirc.repec.org/data/naiguse.html .

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

    IDEAS is a RePEc service. RePEc uses bibliographic data supplied by the respective publishers.