• Investment climate;
  • firms;
  • China;
  • finance;
  • infrastructure;
  • regulation;
  • international integration;
  • labour market;
  • technology
  • D2;
  • G2;
  • L1;
  • L2;
  • O1;
  • O5;
  • P5


The importance of a country's ‘investment climate’ for economic growth has recently received much attention. In this paper we use a new survey of 1,500 Chinese enterprises in five cities to measure more precisely components of the investment climate and their effects on firm performance. Our firm-level analysis reveals that both ownership and investment climate measures matter for investment, productivity and growth. In particular, firm performance is positively correlated with foreign and domestic private ownership, light regulatory burdens, limited corruption, technological infrastructure and labour market flexibility. In contrast, gains from improving banking access and physical infrastructure are quite limited.