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FDI spillovers in emerging markets

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Foreign Direct Investment in Emerging Markets
CENTRE FOR NEW AND EMERGING MARKETS
LONDON BUSINESS SCHOOL
No. 15

FDI Spillovers in Emerging Markets:
A Literature Review and New Perspectives
By
Klaus E. Meyer
Copenhagen Business School

Draft, March 2003
Do not quote

CNEM is a Development Research Centre supported by
the UK Department for International Development

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Contents
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Introduction: Spillovers in a Changing Global Economy
Macroeconomic perspectives
Knowledge spillovers
Inter-industry linkage effects
Competition and crowding out
Societal effects
Investor and project specific determinants of spillovers
Research Agenda

Acknowledgements: I thank Arie Lewin for stimulating this research, and Evis Sinani for her research assistance. Moreover, the following colleagues have been providing helpful comments: Saul Estrin, Camilla Jensen, Mike Peng and participants of the JIBS conference ‘new frontiers in international business research’ at Duke University.

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Abstract
Multinational enterprises (MNEs) play a pivotal role in the development of many emerging markets, and have consequently received due attention by scholarly research in economics and by policy analysts. In contrast, international business scholars have been comparatively uninterested in analyzing this role of MNEs. Yet, they would have important contributions to make to these debates, in particular in two ways: Firstly, the management perspective is essential to understand the interaction between MNEs and their local environment. Secondly, the application of theories and research methodologies developed in management research provide new insights on the dynamics of MNEs in emerging markets.

The prime objective of this paper is thus to motivate international business scholars (beyond those working within a traditional economics paradigm) to engage in research on the role of FDI in emerging economy societies. I thus review existing literature, and propose extensions of the research agenda that management scholars may wish to pursue.

1. Multinational Enterprises in a Changing Global Economy

Multinational firms play a pivotal role in global economy, linking rich and poor economies, and transmitting capital, knowledge, ideas and value systems across borders. Their interaction with institutions, organizations and individuals is generating positive and negative spillovers for stakeholders in host countries. In consequence they have become focal points in the popular debate on the merits and dangers of globalization, especially when it comes to developing countries. A solid understand of the role of MNEs in host societies is vital for both policy makers and for MNEs themselves. Policy makers are influencing the regulatory regime under which the MNE as well as local business partners operate and is influenced by politics.1 Policy makers are interested to understand how MNEs influence local firms, and thus economic development and national welfare. They need to understand how policy instruments may induce MNEs to act in ways that benefit the host economy.

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The policy relevance is underlined by the fact that international organization have sponsored research in the field (Oman 2000 [OECD], Hansen 2002 [UNCTAD]), commissioned very informative reviews of the literature (Altenburg 2000 [UNCTAD], Blomström and Kokko 2002 [OECD], Fan 2002 [ADB]) and publish regular reports, notably the annual World Investment Report [UNCTAD].

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The impact of multinational firms on their surrounding is, or should be, equally relevant to managers. Firstly, positive spillovers may be utilized to build a reputation as company concerned for its stakeholders, while negative spillovers may in the long-run trigger adverse reaction from stakeholders such a local politicians. Secondly, recognizing complementary interests as well as and areas of conflict helps in negotiation processes as it helps... Show More

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