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Ash, Robert, Du, Jun and King, Cheng (2018) 'Perspectives on agricultural and grain output growth in China from the nineteenth century to the present day.' In: Pinilla, Vicente and Willebald, Henry, (eds.), Agricultural Development in the World Periphery: A Global Economic History Approach. Basingstoke: Palgrave Macmillan. (Palgrave Studies in Economic History)

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This chapter reviews agricultural development in China during the last two centuries. Changes in land and population, impacting on output growth, reflect decades of stability and peace that followed the establishment of the Qing Dynasty, but were halted in the late nineteenth century. Subsequently, under the Republic of China (1912–1949), political and military upheavals severely constrained output growth—a situation exacerbated by the Guomindang Government’s failure to institute constructive institutional, economic or technological policies for agriculture. In the Maoist Era (1949–1978) the establishment of collective agriculture and a monopoly procurement system helped promote industrialisation by transferring grain from the rural to the urban sector, albeit at the expense of squeezing Chinese farmers. Since 1979 market forces have played an increasingly important role, although tensions between maintaining cheap food supplies to hold down industrial wage costs, facilitating output growth and achieving fiscal balance have been a persistent challenge.

Item Type: Book Chapters
SOAS Departments & Centres: Regional Centres and Institutes > SOAS China Institute
ISBN: 9783319660196
DOI (Digital Object Identifier):
Date Deposited: 25 Feb 2018 16:19

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