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Gold into Base Metals: Productivity Growth in the People's Republic of China during the Reform Period

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  • Alwyn Young

Abstract

With minimal sleight of hand, it is possible to transform the recent growth experience of the People's Republic of China from the extraordinary into the mundane. Systematic understatement of inflation by enterprises accounts for 2.5% growth per annum in the non-agricultural economy during the reform period (1978-1998). The usual suspects, i.e. rising participation rates, improvements in educational attainment, and the transfer of labour out of agriculture, account for most of the remainder. The productivity performance of the non-agricultural economy during the reform period is respectable, but not outstanding. To the degree that the reforms have improved efficiency, these gains may lie principally in agriculture.

Suggested Citation

  • Alwyn Young, 2000. "Gold into Base Metals: Productivity Growth in the People's Republic of China during the Reform Period," NBER Working Papers 7856, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  • Handle: RePEc:nbr:nberwo:7856
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    JEL classification:

    • O4 - Economic Development, Innovation, Technological Change, and Growth - - Economic Growth and Aggregate Productivity
    • P2 - Economic Systems - - Socialist Systems and Transition Economies

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