Gold into Base Metals: Productivity Growth in the People's Republic of China during the Reform Period
NBER Working Paper No. 7856
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% growth per annum in the non-agricultural economy during the reform period (1978-1998). The usual suspects, i.e. rising participation rates, improvements in educational attainment, and the transfer of labour out of agriculture, account for most of the remainder. The productivity performance of the non-agricultural 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.
Published: Young, Alwyn. "The Razor's Edge: Distortions And Incremental Reform In The People's Republic Of China," Quarterly Journal of Economics, 2000, v115(4,Nov), 1091-1035.