Chapter

The Chinese Export Bundles: Patterns, Puzzles, and Possible Explanations

Zhi Wang and Shang‐Jin Wei

in Emerging Giants

Published in print April 2010 | ISBN: 9780199575077
Published online September 2010 | e-ISBN: 9780191722141 | DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199575077.003.0003
The Chinese Export Bundles: Patterns, Puzzles, and Possible Explanations

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China's exports have become increasingly sophisticated. This has generated anxiety in developed countries as the competitive pressure may be increasingly felt outside labor-intensive industries. Using product-level data on exports from different cities within China, this chapter investigates the contributing factors to the rising export sophistication. Somewhat surprisingly, neither processing trade nor foreign invested firms are found to play an important role in generating the increased overlap in the export structure between China and high-income countries. Instead, improvement in human capital and government policies in the form of tax-favored high-tech zones appear to be the key in the country's evolving export structure. On the other hand, processing trade, foreign invested firms, and government-sponsored high-tech zones all have contributed significantly to raising the unit values of China's exports within a given product category.

Keywords: China; India; export sophistication; export structure; high-tech zones; human capital

Chapter.  8430 words.  Illustrated.

Subjects: Economic Development and Growth

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