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‘No county left behind?’ The distributional impact of high-speed rail upgrades in China

Yu Qin ()

Journal of Economic Geography, 2017, vol. 17, issue 3, 489-520

Abstract: Infrastructure investment may reshape economic activities. In this article, I examine the distributional impacts of high-speed rail upgrades in China, which have improved passengers’ access to high-speed train services in the city nodes but have left the peripheral counties along the upgraded railway lines bypassed by the services. By exploiting the quasi-experimental variation in whether counties were affected by this project, my analysis suggests that the affected counties on the upgraded railway lines experienced reductions in GDP and GDP per capita following the upgrade, which was largely driven by the concurrent drop in fixed asset investments. This article provides the first empirical evidence on how transportation costs of people affect urban peripheral patterns.

Keywords: Transportation costs; high-speed rail; distributional impact; China (search for similar items in EconPapers)
JEL-codes: R11 R12 R40 O18 O33 O53 (search for similar items in EconPapers)
Date: 2017
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