Chinese bilateral intra-industry trade: A panel data study for 50 countries in the 1992-2001 period

Jianhong Zhang, Arjen Van Witteloostuijn*, Chaohong Zhou

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to JournalArticleAcademicpeer-review


This study examines the features and determinants of Chinese intra-industry trade during the 1992-2001 transition period for 50 of China's trade partners. We disentangle total intra-industry trade (TIIT) into vertical intra-industry trade (VIIT) vis-à-vis horizontal intra-industry trade (HIIT), using data at the four-digit SITC level. The findings indicate that Chinese bilateral intra-industry trade, particularly VIIT, increased significantly during this transition period. VIIT appears to be positively related to differences in consumer patterns. HIIT is negatively related to these differences. In addition, we find that FDI has played an important role in determining IIT, especially VIIT. Other significant intra-industry trade drivers are geographical distance, economic size, trade openness and trade composition. Finally, the impact of China's liberalization policies and the special role of Hong Kong are demonstrated. We discuss a number of important business and political implications that can be drawn from our findings.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)510-540
Number of pages31
JournalReview of World Economics
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - 1 Oct 2005
Externally publishedYes


  • China
  • Intra-industry trade
  • Panel data


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