The Effect of Transport Accessibility on Regional Economic Performance

  • 1. Xinjiang Institute of Ecology and Geography, CAS, Urumqi 830011, China;
    2. Graduate University of Chinese Academy of Sciences, Beijing 100039, China

Received date: 2007-05-31

  Revised date: 2007-10-27

  Online published: 2008-04-25

Supported by

Project of Xinjiang Development and Reform Commission; Knowledge Innovation Program of CAS, No.KZCX3-SW-355


Development of transport, as one of the most important causes of changing economic activity and location advantages, is essential to economy development. The purpose of this paper, is to analyze the effect of transport accessibility on regional economy. Cobb-Douglas production function modeling, spatial analysis and network analysis in ArcGIS have been used to analyze this connection. Cobb-Douglas production function (Y = A Ka Lb, Y = Income, K=Capital, L=Labor, A=Technology, a and b are positive parameters) is used to reflect mutual relation between investment and output. It has been applied to many fields such as industry, energy sources, regional economic programming and agricultural management. Accessibility is a basic index which is used to describe traffic cost. Accessibility is one of the main reasons to cause spatial difference of regional economy, because it can reflect the degree of convenience from one place to another using certain traffic system and the economic activity and location advantages at one place on a large scale. Macroeconomic development can be seen as output of social capital investment. As part of social capital investment, infrastructure construction is very important to the regional economic development. In order to analyze the effect of transport accessibility on investment performance in regional economy and its weight in the economic growth, the authors adopted Cobb-Douglas production function and its regression modeling to constructe a homeostasis equation based on the relationship between investment (transport accessibility and total investment) and output (GDP). The timescale includes 11 years from 1995 to 2005 which was divided into two stages (1995-2000, and 2000-2005, especially). Also, we integrated spatial analysis method in GIS with economic modeling theory and constructed a multifactor regression equation. According to these models, feasibility of developing transport accessibility and its roles in macroeconomy have been analyzed with the spatial-temporal change of transport network and change characteristic of macroeconomy in the same term. The result indicates that the transport accessibilities are still very low and disproportional in many places in Xinjiang. Transport accessibilities polarize in some regions. There are big gaps among the other regions. Also, it has not come into being an organic pattern in line or polygon besides some points. It also shows that economic development depends mainly on investment scale when transport accessibility is suitable for some economic level, however, investment performance would be restricted by transport accessibility when the latter is lower than the level. There exists different response relationships between fluctuation of transport accessibility and economy in different terms. The improvement of transport accessibility will be in the interests of national economy. Transport cost, one of the most important factors, differs greatly throughout Xinjiang. It is very high in most areas. The spatial distribution of difference is consistent with that of economy based on the analysis of transport cost in increasing 10,000 yuan GDP increase per capita. According to the result, we found Cobb-Douglas production function and the regression modeling can link transport accessibility with macroeconomy. A quantitative analysis has been made between the change of transport network in space and the regional economic performance with the models. The final result shows this method is valuable to decide and optimize investment scale. This study can provide basis for steady, harmonious and balanced economic development.

Cite this article

LIU Hailong, BAO Anming, CHEN Xi, ZHANG Xiaolei, ZHANG Jinying . The Effect of Transport Accessibility on Regional Economic Performance[J]. Acta Geographica Sinica, 2008 , 63(4) : 428 -436 . DOI: 10.11821/xb200804007


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