This chapter examines the persistence of regional disparities in China. Empirical evidence on long-term regional convergence shows that the quest for redress in regional imbalances remains elusive. The oscillation in regional inequality is linked to China’s evolving institutional landscape. Despite their raison d’être evaporating, the persistence of some pre-reform institutions such as the household registration system (Hukou) has continued to be in the spotlight, not least because of its alleged impact on interjurisdictional factors and resource mobility and thus regional convergence.
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