The Structure of China's Imports: A New Framework

19 Pages Posted: 22 Sep 2015

See all articles by Hao Wei

Hao Wei

Beijing Normal University (BNU) - School of Economics and Business Administration

Chunming Zhao

Beijing Normal University (BNU) - School of Economics and Business Administration

Date Written: September–October 2015

Abstract

Using the elbow function method to determine the number of classification groups of goods and applying the K‐means algorithm to classify technical goods, this paper constructs a scientific classification framework of commodity structure and then measures the changes in China's import commodity structure. It is found, first, that from 2000 to 2012, the import commodity structure in China underwent structural change. Shares of non‐agricultural primary products and high‐technology products increased significantly, whereas shares of low–medium‐technology products and medium–high‐technology products declined. Second, from 2000 to 2006, the overall technology level of China's imports declined, but then increased from 2007 to 2012. Therefore, the Chinese Government should increase the share of high‐technology and extra‐high‐technology products in total imports to stimulate structural transformation in manufacturing industries to make full use of foreign advanced technology and to prevent stepping into a low‐end import commodity structure.

Keywords: elbow function method, import commodity structure, import technology level, K‐means algorithm, technology sophistication index

JEL Classification: F14, F41, O53

Suggested Citation

Wei, Hao and Zhao, Chunming, The Structure of China's Imports: A New Framework (September–October 2015). China & World Economy, Vol. 23, Issue 5, pp. 85-103, 2015, Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=2663726 or http://dx.doi.org/10.1111/cwe.12129

Hao Wei (Contact Author)

Beijing Normal University (BNU) - School of Economics and Business Administration ( email )

No.19 Xinwai Str
Haidian District
Beijing, 100875
China

Chunming Zhao

Beijing Normal University (BNU) - School of Economics and Business Administration ( email )

No.19 Xinwai Str
Haidian District
Beijing, 100875
China

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