IDEAS home Printed from https://ideas.repec.org/p/wbk/wbrwps/3408.html
   My bibliography  Save this paper

China's (uneven) progress against poverty

Author

Listed:
  • Ravallion, Martin
  • Shaohua Chen

Abstract

While the incidence of extreme poverty in China fell dramatically over 1980-2001, progress was uneven over time and across provinces. Rural areas accounted for the bulk of the gains to the poor, though migration to urban areas helped. The pattern of growth mattered. Rural economic growth was far more important to national poverty reduction than urban economic growth. Agriculture played a far more important role than the secondary or tertiary sources of gross domestic product (GDP). Rising inequality within the rural sector greatly slowed poverty reduction. Provinces starting with relatively high inequality saw slower progress against poverty, due both to lower growth and a lower growth elasticity of poverty reduction. Taxation of farmers and inflation hurt the poor. External trade had little short-term impact.

Suggested Citation

  • Ravallion, Martin & Shaohua Chen, 2004. "China's (uneven) progress against poverty," Policy Research Working Paper Series 3408, The World Bank.
  • Handle: RePEc:wbk:wbrwps:3408
    as

    Download full text from publisher

    File URL: http://www-wds.worldbank.org/external/default/WDSContentServer/WDSP/IB/2008/09/15/000333038_20080915063219/Rendered/PDF/WPS34080CHINES1t011020040Poverty104.pdf
    Download Restriction: no
    ---><---

    Other versions of this item:

    References listed on IDEAS

    as
    1. Chen, Jian & Fleisher, Belton M., 1996. "Regional Income Inequality and Economic Growth in China," Journal of Comparative Economics, Elsevier, vol. 22(2), pages 141-164, April.
    2. Martin Raiser, 1998. "Subsidising inequality: Economic reforms, fiscal transfers and convergence across Chinese provinces," Journal of Development Studies, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 34(3), pages 1-26.
    3. Foster, James & Greer, Joel & Thorbecke, Erik, 1984. "A Class of Decomposable Poverty Measures," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 52(3), pages 761-766, May.
    4. Martin Ravallion & Shaohua Chen, 1999. "When Economic Reform is Faster Then Statistical Reform: Measuring and Explaining Income Inequality in Rural China," Oxford Bulletin of Economics and Statistics, Department of Economics, University of Oxford, vol. 61(1), pages 33-56, February.
    5. Ravallion, Martin, 1997. "Can high-inequality developing countries escape absolute poverty?," Economics Letters, Elsevier, vol. 56(1), pages 51-57, September.
    6. Jian, Tianlun & Sachs, Jeffrey D. & Warner, Andrew M., 1996. "Trends in regional inequality in China," China Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 7(1), pages 1-21.
    7. Datt, Gaurav & Ravallion, Martin, 1992. "Growth and redistribution components of changes in poverty measures : A decomposition with applications to Brazil and India in the 1980s," Journal of Development Economics, Elsevier, vol. 38(2), pages 275-295, April.
    8. Lipton, Michael & Ravallion, Martin, 1995. "Poverty and policy," Handbook of Development Economics, in: Hollis Chenery & T.N. Srinivasan (ed.), Handbook of Development Economics, edition 1, volume 3, chapter 41, pages 2551-2657, Elsevier.
    9. Gaurav Datt & Martin Ravallion, 1998. "Farm productivity and rural poverty in India," Journal of Development Studies, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 34(4), pages 62-85.
    10. Bardhan, Pranab & Bowles, Samuel & Gintis, Herbert, 2000. "Wealth inequality, wealth constraints and economic performance," Handbook of Income Distribution, in: A.B. Atkinson & F. Bourguignon (ed.), Handbook of Income Distribution, edition 1, volume 1, chapter 10, pages 541-603, Elsevier.
    11. Bourguignon, Francois & Morrisson, Christian, 1998. "Inequality and development: the role of dualism," Journal of Development Economics, Elsevier, vol. 57(2), pages 233-257.
    12. World Bank, 2002. "Globalization, Growth, and Poverty : Building an Inclusive World Economy," World Bank Publications - Books, The World Bank Group, number 14051, December.
    13. Lin, Justin Yifu, 1992. "Rural Reforms and Agricultural Growth in China," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 82(1), pages 34-51, March.
    14. Kanbur, Ravi & Zhang, Xiaobo, 1999. "Which Regional Inequality? The Evolution of Rural-Urban and Inland-Coastal Inequality in China from 1983 to 1995," Journal of Comparative Economics, Elsevier, vol. 27(4), pages 686-701, December.
    15. Ravallion, Martin & Datt, Gaurav, 1996. "How Important to India's Poor Is the Sectoral Composition of Economic Growth?," The World Bank Economic Review, World Bank, vol. 10(1), pages 1-25, January.
    16. Shenggen Fan, 1991. "Effects of Technological Change and Institutional Reform on Production Growth in Chinese Agriculture," American Journal of Agricultural Economics, Agricultural and Applied Economics Association, vol. 73(2), pages 266-275.
    17. Benjamin, Dwayne & Brandt, Loren & Giles, John, 2005. "The Evolution of Income Inequality in Rural China," Economic Development and Cultural Change, University of Chicago Press, vol. 53(4), pages 769-824, July.
    18. Cecilia Garcia-Penalosa & Eve Caroli & Philippe Aghion, 1999. "Inequality and Economic Growth: The Perspective of the New Growth Theories," Journal of Economic Literature, American Economic Association, vol. 37(4), pages 1615-1660, December.
    19. Kai-yuen, Tsui, 1998. "Trends and Inequalities of Rural Welfare in China: Evidence from Rural Households in Guangdong and Sichuan," Journal of Comparative Economics, Elsevier, vol. 26(4), pages 783-804, December.
    20. Easterly, William & Fischer, Stanley, 2001. "Inflation and the Poor," Journal of Money, Credit and Banking, Blackwell Publishing, vol. 33(2), pages 160-178, May.
    21. repec:dau:papers:123456789/10091 is not listed on IDEAS
    22. Ravallion, Martin, 1998. "Does aggregation hide the harmful effects of inequality on growth?," Economics Letters, Elsevier, vol. 61(1), pages 73-77, October.
    23. Elena Ianchovichina & Will Martin, 2004. "Impacts of China's Accession to the World Trade Organization," The World Bank Economic Review, World Bank, vol. 18(1), pages 3-27.
    24. Kung James, Kaising, 1995. "Equal Entitlement versus Tenure Security under a Regime of Collective Property Rights: Peasants' Preference for Institutions in Post-reform Chinese Agriculture," Journal of Comparative Economics, Elsevier, vol. 21(1), pages 82-111, August.
    25. Dennis Tao Yang, 1999. "Urban-Biased Policies and Rising Income Inequality in China," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 89(2), pages 306-310, May.
    26. Dollar, David & Kraay, Aart, 2002. "Growth Is Good for the Poor," Journal of Economic Growth, Springer, vol. 7(3), pages 195-225, September.
    27. Ravallion, Martin, 2001. "Growth, Inequality and Poverty: Looking Beyond Averages," World Development, Elsevier, vol. 29(11), pages 1803-1815, November.
    28. Chen, Shaohua & Ravallion, Martin, 1996. "Data in transition: Assessing rural living standards in Southern China," China Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 7(1), pages 23-56.
    29. Ravallion, Martin & Huppi, Monika, 1991. "Measuring Changes in Poverty: A Methodological Case Study of Indonesia during an Adjustment Period," The World Bank Economic Review, World Bank, vol. 5(1), pages 57-82, January.
    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. Ravallion, Martin, 2006. "Looking beyond averages in the trade and poverty debate," World Development, Elsevier, vol. 34(8), pages 1374-1392, August.
    2. Chaudhuri, Shubham & Ravallion, Martin, 2006. "Partially awakened giants : uneven growth in China and India," Policy Research Working Paper Series 4069, The World Bank.
    3. L. Alan Winters & Shahid Yusuf, 2007. "Dancing with the Giants: China, India, and the Global Economy," World Bank Publications - Books, The World Bank Group, number 6632, December.
    4. Ravallion, Martin & Datt, Gaurav, 2002. "Why has economic growth been more pro-poor in some states of India than others?," Journal of Development Economics, Elsevier, vol. 68(2), pages 381-400, August.
    5. Ravallion, Martin, 2005. "Inequality is bad for the poor," Policy Research Working Paper Series 3677, The World Bank.
    6. Ravallion, Martin, 2001. "Growth, Inequality and Poverty: Looking Beyond Averages," World Development, Elsevier, vol. 29(11), pages 1803-1815, November.
    7. Iniguez-Montiel, Alberto Javier, 2014. "Growth with Equity for the Development of Mexico: Poverty, Inequality, and Economic Growth (1992–2008)," World Development, Elsevier, vol. 59(C), pages 313-326.
    8. Kanbur, Ravi & Zhang, Xiaobo, 2001. "Fifty Years of Regional Inequality in China: A Journey through Revolution, Reform and Openness," CEPR Discussion Papers 2887, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
    9. Martin Ravallion, 2012. "Why Don't We See Poverty Convergence?," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 102(1), pages 504-523, February.
    10. Yerrabati, Sridevi, 2022. "Does vulnerable employment alleviate poverty in developing countries?," Economic Modelling, Elsevier, vol. 116(C).
    11. Thirtle, Colin & Lin, Lin & Piesse, Jenifer, 2003. "The Impact of Research-Led Agricultural Productivity Growth on Poverty Reduction in Africa, Asia and Latin America," World Development, Elsevier, vol. 31(12), pages 1959-1975, December.
    12. Kalwij, Adriaan & Verschoor, Arjan, 2007. "Not by growth alone: The role of the distribution of income in regional diversity in poverty reduction," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 51(4), pages 805-829, May.
    13. Ravallion, Martin, 2009. "Are There Lessons for Africa from China's Success Against Poverty?," World Development, Elsevier, vol. 37(2), pages 303-313, February.
    14. Adriaan Kalwij & Arjan Verschoor, 2005. "A Decomposition of Poverty Trends Across Regions: the Role of Variation in the Income and Inequality Elasticities of Poverty," WIDER Working Paper Series RP2005-36, World Institute for Development Economic Research (UNU-WIDER).
    15. Martin Ravallion, 2011. "A Comparative Perspective on Poverty Reduction in Brazil, China, and India," The World Bank Research Observer, World Bank, vol. 26(1), pages 71-104, February.
    16. Ravallion, Martin, 2003. "Targeted transfers in poor countries : revisiting the tradeoffs and policy options," Policy Research Working Paper Series 3048, The World Bank.
    17. Qinghua Zhang & Heng-fu Zou, 2012. "Regional Inequality in Contemporary China," Annals of Economics and Finance, Society for AEF, vol. 13(1), pages 113-137, May.
    18. Ngepah, Nicholas & Espoir, Delphin Kamanda, 2018. "Binding constraints of economic growth on poverty: A dynamic panel data analysis," MPRA Paper 92136, University Library of Munich, Germany, revised 15 Oct 2018.
    19. Daniele Malerba, 2018. "How to reduce poverty and address climate change? An empirical cross-country analysis and the roles of economic growth and inequality," Global Development Institute Working Paper Series 322018, GDI, The University of Manchester.
    20. Benjamin, Dwayne & Brandt, Loren & Giles, John, 2005. "The Evolution of Income Inequality in Rural China," Economic Development and Cultural Change, University of Chicago Press, vol. 53(4), pages 769-824, July.

    More about this item

    Keywords

    Governance Indicators; Public Health Promotion; Poverty Assessment; Services&Transfers to Poor; Environmental Economics&Policies; Economic Conditions and Volatility; Poverty Impact Evaluation; Achieving Shared Growth; Safety Nets and Transfers;
    All these keywords.

    JEL classification:

    • C72 - Mathematical and Quantitative Methods - - Game Theory and Bargaining Theory - - - Noncooperative Games
    • D82 - Microeconomics - - Information, Knowledge, and Uncertainty - - - Asymmetric and Private Information; Mechanism Design
    • L14 - Industrial Organization - - Market Structure, Firm Strategy, and Market Performance - - - Transactional Relationships; Contracts and Reputation

    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:wbk:wbrwps:3408. 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: Roula I. Yazigi (email available below). General contact details of provider: https://edirc.repec.org/data/dvewbus.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.