Hazards of Expropriation: Tenure Insecurity and Investment in Rural China
- Author(s): Jacoby, Hanan G.;
- Li, Guo;
- Rozelle, Scott D.
- et al.
This paper uses household data from Northeast China to examine the link between investment and land tenure insecurity induced by China’s system of village-level land reallocation. We quantify expropriation risk using a hazard analysis of individual plot tenures and incorporate the predicted “hazards of expropriation” into an empirical analysis of plot-level investment. Our focus is on organic fertilizer use, which has long lasting benefits for soil quality. Although we find that higher expropriation risk significantly reduces application of organic fertilizer, a welfare analysis shows that guaranteeing land tenure in this part of China would yield only minimal efficiency gains.