Does firm ownership change affect performance? On the basis of a mean-value analysis and a fixed effects panel analysis of over 1100 Chinese companies during the period of ownership reform (1997-2003), this paper examines the performance impact of firm ownership transformation in China. The data used allows us to compare the performance impacts of different methods taken to restructure the ownership of state firms, such as full versus partial privatisation. For China, a state-capitalist nation and the world’s largest state sector under transition, the mix of state and private ownership – partial privatisation – emerges as the best performing type of ownership model for firms. Here, the firm can gain the best synergy of both state support and private business strength. The experience of the Chinese reform shows that the political context and system are important influencing factors on ownership preference for a firm.
Chinese enterprise reform corporate governance firm ownership Firm performance privatisation