The evolution of technological complexity of China’s urban export products

Authors: ZHI BIN LI*, Peking University
Topics: Economic Geography, China
Keywords: Export; Technological complexity; Resource allocation; City
Session Type: Paper
Day: 4/4/2019
Start / End Time: 5:00 PM / 6:40 PM
Room: 8223, Park Tower Suites, Marriott, Lobby Level
Presentation File: No File Uploaded


China's export scale has experienced explosive growth, but the structure of export products needs to be optimized. Measuring the technical level and structural characteristics of export products plays an important role in correctly understanding the technical complexity level of China's export products. Base on a firm-product level dataset on Chinese exports during 2000-2013, this paper calculate the technical complexity of Chinese urban export products following Hidalgo and Hausmann’s (2009) iterative method to reduce of endogenous problems of existing methods. This study found that: (1) the technological complexity of China's urban export products is constantly improving, and the gap between cities is also converging; (2) the technical complexity distribution of China's urban export products also presents huge regional differences, consistent with China's export space; (3) the increase of the technical complexity of China's urban export products mainly comes from the entry of new products and the exit of existing products. The contribution of resource allocation among products is negative, and its contribution continues to increase. The research in this paper is helpful to understand the changes in the technical complexity of China's export products, providing a theoretical basis for the upgrading of China's export product structure.

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