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On the road to prosperity ? The economic geography of China's national expressway network

Author

Listed:
  • Roberts, Mark
  • Deichmann, Uwe
  • Fingleton, Bernard
  • Shi, Tuo

Abstract

Over the past two decades, China has embarked on an ambitious program of expressway network expansion. By facilitating market integration, this program aims both to promote efficiency at the national level and to contribute to the catch-up of lagging inland regions with prosperous Eastern ones. This paper evaluates the aggregate and spatial economic impacts of China's newly constructed National Expressway Network, focussing, in particular, on its short-run impacts. To achieve this aim, the authors adopt a counterfactual approach based on the estimation and simulation of a structural"new economic geography"model. Overall, they find that aggregate Chinese real income was approximately 6 percent higher than it would have been in 2007 had the expressway network not been built. Although there is considerable heterogeneity in the results, the authors do not find evidence of a significant reduction in disparities across prefectural level regions or of a reduction in urban-rural disparities. If anything, the expressway network appears to have reinforced existing patterns of spatial inequality, although, over time, these will likely be reduced by enhanced migration.

Suggested Citation

  • Roberts, Mark & Deichmann, Uwe & Fingleton, Bernard & Shi, Tuo, 2010. "On the road to prosperity ? The economic geography of China's national expressway network," Policy Research Working Paper Series 5479, The World Bank.
  • Handle: RePEc:wbk:wbrwps:5479
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    Blog mentions

    As found by EconAcademics.org, the blog aggregator for Economics research:
    1. On the road: understanding the benefits from infrastructure investment
      by Straub in Stephane Straub on 2012-06-10 18:10:00

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    Cited by:

    1. Man Li & JunJie Wu & Xiangzheng Deng, 2013. "Identifying Drivers of Land Use Change in China: A Spatial Multinomial Logit Model Analysis," Land Economics, University of Wisconsin Press, vol. 89(4), pages 632-654.
    2. Fabrizio Barca & Philip McCann & Andrés Rodríguez‐Pose, 2012. "The Case For Regional Development Intervention: Place‐Based Versus Place‐Neutral Approaches," Journal of Regional Science, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 52(1), pages 134-152, February.
    3. Lin, Justin Yifu & Doemeland, Doerte, 2012. "Beyond Keynesianism : global infrastructure investments in times of crisis," Policy Research Working Paper Series 5940, The World Bank.
    4. Roberts, Mark & Deichmann, Uwe & Fingleton, Bernard & Shi, Tuo, 2012. "Evaluating China's road to prosperity: A new economic geography approach," Regional Science and Urban Economics, Elsevier, vol. 42(4), pages 580-594.
    5. Lin, Justin Yifu, 2013. "Global infrastructure initiative and global recovery," Journal of Policy Modeling, Elsevier, vol. 35(3), pages 400-411.
    6. Ying Jin & Richard Bullock & Wanli Fang, 2013. "Regional Impacts of High Speed Rail in China : Spatial Proximity and Productivity in an Emerging Economy," World Bank Other Operational Studies 19989, The World Bank.

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    Keywords

    Transport Economics Policy&Planning; Economic Theory&Research; Labor Policies; Roads&Highways; Regional Economic Development;

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