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Public vs. Private Ownership of Firms: Evidence from Rural China

  • Hehui Jin
  • Yingyi Qian
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    November 1997, Revised March 1998 (forthcoming, Quarterly Journal of Economics) Why are many of China's successful rural enterprises publically owned by local communities? Using a set of provincial data, we find that the share of community public firms (Township-Village Enterprises, or TVEs) relative to private enterprises is higher where the central government's influence is greater, the community government's power is stronger, and the level of market development is lower. We also find that TVEs help achieve the community government's goals of increasing government revenue, rural non-farm employment, and rural income. However, TVEs do not increase rural income given the levels of non-farm employment and/or local public goods provision, indicating possible inefficiency as compared to private enterprises. Key Words: Ownership, Township-Village Enterprises, Local Government, Institutions, China

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    Paper provided by Stanford University, Department of Economics in its series Working Papers with number 97047.

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    Handle: RePEc:wop:stanec:97047
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    1. Putterman, Louis, 1997. "On the past and future of china's township and village-owned enterprises," World Development, Elsevier, vol. 25(10), pages 1639-1655, October.
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    7. Jiahua Che & Yingyi Qian, . "Insecure Property Rights and Government Ownership of Firms," Working Papers 97050, Stanford University, Department of Economics.
    8. Weitzman Martin L. & Xu Chenggang, 1994. "Chinese Township-Village Enterprises as Vaguely Defined Cooperatives," Journal of Comparative Economics, Elsevier, vol. 18(2), pages 121-145, April.
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    10. Shleifer, Andrei & Vishny, Robert W, 1994. "Politicians and Firms," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 109(4), pages 995-1025, November.
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    14. Wong, Christine P. W. (ed.), 1997. "Financing Local Government in the People's Republic of China," OUP Catalogue, Oxford University Press, number 9780195900279, March.
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