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Patterns of growth in Chinese cities: Implications of the land lease

Paul Anglin, David Dale-Johnson, Yanmin Gao and Guozhong Zhu ()

Journal of Urban Economics, 2014, vol. 83, issue C, 87-107

Abstract: A special feature of China’s housing market is land use rights in the form of land leasehold contracts granted by the government. We consider an equilibrium model in which a representative developer may choose to redevelop existing centrally located housing or to develop new housing at the periphery of the city. We show that as the city grows, the land leasehold system results in the city center being developed less intensely and more land being used on the outskirts of the city when compared to a fee simple environment. Thus, cities in China are likely to be relatively more spread out, with city centers relatively older than would be the case with “fee simple” ownership. Our model suggests that excess residential land use is about 6 percent. In addition, compared with the ownership case, housing supply will grow more quickly in the near future, but more slowly later on during the transition of the Chinese economy. Parallel to the supply growth pattern, equilibrium price grows relative slowly in the near future, but more quickly later on. While we focus on residential uses, we believe our model can be applied to other land uses.

Keywords: Ground lease; China; Urban development; Population density; Housing age (search for similar items in EconPapers)
JEL-codes: H70 J61 L85 O21 P14 P25 R30 R58 (search for similar items in EconPapers)
Date: 2014
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DOI: 10.1016/j.jue.2014.07.002

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