CAIRN-INT.INFO : International Edition

The aim of this article is to understand, based on the special case of a small private enterprise in a medium-size city in the central province of Hunan, how economic activity is rooted in a territory in a system undergoing the transition from a planned economy to a free-market economy. The issue is discussed with regard to the mobilisation of production factors (work and capital), as well as social resources (an area of relationships formed by suppliers and their customers), as well as local economic history marked by the bankruptcy of state enterprises and the laying off of their workers. Through the itinerary of an entrepreneur, the article seeks to bring out the particular conditions required for a free-market economy to emerge in China and to analyse more specifically the extent to which the location of the company may be considered a resource.

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