Eroding cropland and urban land sales in China

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2023-08
Authors
Qu, Xiaorui
Major Professor
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Hayes, Dermot
Hart, Chad
Zhang, Wendong
Feng, Hongli
Nie, Cheng
Committee Member
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Economics
Abstract
In 2009, China made an upward revision of its reported cropland area by 13.66 million hectares. Reported crop area then remained relatively consistent until 2017, despite ongoing urbanization. This dissertation presents a forensic analysis of China's cropland area, providing evidence of a continued loss of cropland at a rate exceeding one million hectares per year between 2009 and 2017. This conclusion is supported by a substantial increase in Chinese imports of land-intensive goods. Additionally, this study derives measure of the reduction on cropland quality by utilizing the multi-cropping index (MCI). Empirical investigations are conducted to explore the effects of urban land sales on this quality measure. The results demonstrate that for every ¥1 million (RMB) increase in urban land prices, cropland quality cropland decreases by 0.0017 on a scale of 0 to 1. These findings underscore the potential consequences for the Chinas imports of agricultural commodities.
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