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

Posted: 15 Jan 2004

See all articles by Alwyn Young

Alwyn Young

University of Chicago - Booth School of Business; National Bureau of Economic Research (NBER)

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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 percent growth per year in the nonagricultural economy during the first two decades of the reform period (1978-98). The usual suspects (i.e., rising participation rates, improvements in educational attainment, and the transfer of labor out of agriculture) account for most of the remainder. The productivity performance of the nonagricultural 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

Young, Alwyn, Gold into Base Metals: Productivity Growth in the People's Republic of China During the Reform Period. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=468167

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