Malaria and Chinese Economic Activities in Africa


Cervellati, Matteo (University of Bologna, CEPR and IZA) 
Esposito, Elena (HEC and University of Lausanne)
Sunde, Uwe (LMU Munich, CEPR and IZA)
Yuan, Song (University of Warwick)


We present novel evidence for the influence of malaria exposure on the geographic loca- tion of Chinese economic activities in Africa. The hypothesis is based on the observation that many Chinese aid projects and infrastructure contractors rely on Chinese personnel. High malaria exposure might constitute an important impediment to their employment and productivity. Combining data on Chinese aid and construction projects with geo-localized information about the presence of individuals from internet posts reveals a lower density of Chinese activities and of Chinese workers in areas with a high malaria exposure. This e↵ect is mitigated partly through heterogeneity across sectors and immunity of the local population, through the selection of Chinese workers from regions in China with historically high malaria risk, and through the availability of malaria treatment.


infrastructure projects; malaria; disease prevalence; immunity; weibo


F2; F6; J2; J6


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Malaria and Chinese Economic Activities in Africa
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