Productivity Spillovers from Foreign Direct Investment in the Cambodian Manufacturing Sector: Evidence from Establishment-Level Data
AbstractForeign Direct Investment (FDI) is generally regarded as an important source of finance, especially for the developing countries. Aitken and Harrison (1999) indicated that the largest source of external finance during the 1990s made available to the developing economies consisted of FDI. However, the role played by FDI in host countries through the transfer of technology, which in turn leads to an increase in labor productivity in the domestic firms via mainly indirect effects, is even more important. Since FDI is believed to be an important channel through which the international transfer of technology takes place, it has been identified as a major growth-enhancing factor in host countries. With a view to attracting inward FDI, governments in many countries (developed and developing) have liberalized their FDI regulations and adopted an investment-friendly policy. Additionally, handsome incentives such as tax holidays, the absence of import duties on intermediate inputs, low corporate tax rates, etc. are granted to investment projects by foreigners. Cambodia is no exception to such favorable policy for foreign investors. That host countries subsidize FDI activities is based on the expectation that, in addition to the employment generated by these activities, FDI makes available to the host country a package of capital, modern technology, know-how, and managerial and marketing skills, and consequently fosters productivity growth in the FDI-receiving country. When domestic firms in the host country also have access to the modern technologies and skills introduced by inward FDI, this in turn may lead both to improvements in the host country’s labor productivity and to increasing efficiency of domestic firms. However, some local firms may also suffer from the competitive presence of the more efficient foreign counterparts, as they may be forced to reduce their output or stop their activities. When their average cost curve is driven up, productivity is reduced. Certain home country conditions, such as institutions and the degree of competition, and the skill levels of the labor force might also affect the relative magnitudes of the costs and benefits. Given the benefits and costs, associated with the presence of FDI, the question is whether or not it is justified for the host country to take such generous measures in favor of foreign investors. Yet, Aitken and Harrison (1999) argue that if the benefits generated by FDI in the host country are not completely internalized by those firms, some types of subsidy may be justified. A large number of studies have been carried out to provide both the theoretical foundations and empirical results about the impact of FDI on the host country economy. The theoretical developments have stirred numerous empirical investigations into the role that FDI has played in the transfer of technology both in developed and developing countries. Data at the levels of the industry, firm, or plant have been used in those studies. The results of these analyses are ambiguous, with the slope parameter estimates of the “spillover” variables ranging from positive to negative. These mixed findings may be due to differences in research design, methodology, and the quality of data, and even the construction of the spillover variable. However, on balance, it is widely accepted that the entry of multinational enterprises (MNEs) generates a net positive effect on the local firms’ productivity in the host countries. The main objective of this paper is to analyze the net benefits generated by the presence of FDI in the manufacturing sector of the small, open economy of Cambodia. FDI has flowed into Cambodia since the outset of the country’s economy opening-up to the outside world after the first general election in 1993. Manufacturing FDI amounted to 43 percent of total FDI in Cambodia (see further below). From 1994 to 2004, the manufacturing sector contributed, on average, more than 70 percent to the total industrial output (Ministry of Planning, 2006). The importance of FDI in the Cambodian manufacturing sector will be studied to find an answer to the question whether FDI has played a role in improving local manufacturing productivity in Cambodia? Cross-sectional data from the latest and more informative ‘Survey of Industrial Establishments 2000’ will be used for this purpose. The remainder of this paper is organized as follows. Section 2 discusses the theoretical developments. The evidence on the FDI impact on productivity spillovers is discussed in section 3, while section 4 describes FDI in Cambodia’s manufacturing sector. Section 5 presents a testable econometric model. Data and methodology are discussed in section 6. Estimation results are presented in section 7. Section 8 concludes and provides some policy implications.
Download InfoIf you experience problems downloading a file, check if you have the proper application to view it first. In case of further problems read the IDEAS help page. Note that these files are not on the IDEAS site. Please be patient as the files may be large.
Bibliographic InfoPaper provided by University of Antwerp, Faculty of Applied Economics in its series Working Papers with number 2008004.
Length: 48 pages
Date of creation: Mar 2008
Date of revision:
Contact details of provider:
Postal: Prinsstraat 13, B-2000 Antwerpen
Web page: https://www.uantwerp.be/en/faculties/applied-economic-sciences/
More information through EDIRC
This paper has been announced in the following NEP Reports:
Please report citation or reference errors to , or , if you are the registered author of the cited work, log in to your RePEc Author Service profile, click on "citations" and make appropriate adjustments.:
- Ksenia Yudaeva & Konstantin Kozlov & Natalia Melentieva & Natalia Ponomareva, 2003. "Does foreign ownership matter?," The Economics of Transition, The European Bank for Reconstruction and Development, vol. 11(3), pages 383-409, 09.
- Yamagata, Tatsufumi, 2006. "The Garment Industry in Cambodia: Its Role in Poverty Reduction through Export-Oriented Development," IDE Discussion Papers 62, Institute of Developing Economies, Japan External Trade Organization(JETRO).
- Lall, Sanjaya, 1978. "Transnationals, Domestic Enterprises, and Industrial Structure in Host LDCs: A Survey," Oxford Economic Papers, Oxford University Press, vol. 30(2), pages 217-48, July.
- Ari Kokko, 1996. "Productivity spillovers from competition between local firms and foreign affiliates," Journal of International Development, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 8(4), pages 517-530.
- Xiaming Liu & Pamela Siler & Chengqi Wang & Yingqi Wei, 2000. "Productivity Spillovers From Foreign Direct Investment: Evidence From UK Industry Level Panel Data," Journal of International Business Studies, Palgrave Macmillan, vol. 31(3), pages 407-425, September.
- Glass, Amy Jocelyn & Saggi, Kamal, 2002.
" Multinational Firms and Technology Transfer,"
Scandinavian Journal of Economics,
Wiley Blackwell, vol. 104(4), pages 495-513, December.
- Kokko, Ari & Tansini, Ruben & Zejan, Mario, 1994.
"Productivity Spillovers from FDI in the Uruguayan Manufacturing Sector,"
Working Paper Series in Economics and Finance
2, Stockholm School of Economics.
- Ari Kokko & Ruben Tansini & Mario Zejan, 1994. "Productivity spillovers from FDI in the Uruguayan manufacturing sector," Documentos de Trabajo (working papers) 0194, Department of Economics - dECON.
- Sjöholm, Fredrik, 1998.
"Productivity Growth in Indonesia: The Role of Regional Characteristics and Direct Foreign Investment,"
Working Paper Series in Economics and Finance
216, Stockholm School of Economics.
- Sjoholm, Fredrik, 1999. "Productivity Growth in Indonesia: The Role of Regional Characteristics and Direct Foreign Investment," Economic Development and Cultural Change, University of Chicago Press, vol. 47(3), pages 559-84, April.
- Steven Globerman, 1979. "Foreign Direct Investment and `Spillover' Efficiency Benefits in Canadian Manufacturing Industries," Canadian Journal of Economics, Canadian Economics Association, vol. 12(1), pages 42-56, February.
- Kokko, Ari, 1994. "Technology, market characteristics, and spillovers," Journal of Development Economics, Elsevier, vol. 43(2), pages 279-293, April.
- Christopher F Baum, 2006. "An Introduction to Modern Econometrics using Stata," Stata Press books, StataCorp LP, number imeus, July.
- de Mello, Luiz R, Jr, 1999.
"Foreign Direct Investment-Led Growth: Evidence from Time Series and Panel Data,"
Oxford Economic Papers,
Oxford University Press, vol. 51(1), pages 133-51, January.
- L.R. de Mello Jr., 1996. "Foreign Direct Investment-Led Growth: Evidence from Time Series and Panel Data," Studies in Economics 9615, Department of Economics, University of Kent.
- Ann E. Harrison & Brian J. Aitken, 1999. "Do Domestic Firms Benefit from Direct Foreign Investment? Evidence from Venezuela," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 89(3), pages 605-618, June.
- David Greenaway & Richard Kneller, 2005. "Exporting And Productivity: Theory, Evidence And Future Research," The Singapore Economic Review (SER), World Scientific Publishing Co. Pte. Ltd., vol. 50(sp), pages 303-312.
- Haskel, Jonathan & Pereira, Sonia & Slaughter, Matthew, 2002.
"Does Inward Foreign Direct Investment Boost the Productivity of Domestic Firms?,"
CEPR Discussion Papers
3384, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
- Jonathan E. Haskel & Sonia C. Pereira & Matthew J. Slaughter, 2007. "Does Inward Foreign Direct Investment Boost the Productivity of Domestic Firms?," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 89(3), pages 482-496, August.
- Jonathan E. Haskel & Sonia C. Pereira & Matthew J. Slaughter, 2002. "Does Inward Foreign Direct Investment Boost the Productivity of Domestic Firms?," NBER Working Papers 8724, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
- Jonathan E. Haskel & Sonia C. Pereira & Matthew J. Slaughter, 2002. "Does Inward Foreign Direct Investment Boost the Productivity of Domestic Firms?," Working Papers 452, Queen Mary, University of London, School of Economics and Finance.
- Blomstrom, Magnus & Kokko, Ari, 1998.
" Multinational Corporations and Spillovers,"
Journal of Economic Surveys,
Wiley Blackwell, vol. 12(3), pages 247-77, July.
- Blomström, Magnus & Kokko, Ari, 1996. "Multinational Corporations and Spillovers," Working Paper Series in Economics and Finance 99, Stockholm School of Economics.
- Blomström, Magnus & Kokko, Ari, 1996. "Multinational Corporations and Spillovers," CEPR Discussion Papers 1365, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
- Blomstrom, Magnus & Sjoholm, Fredrik, 1999.
"Technology transfer and spillovers: Does local participation with multinationals matter?1,"
European Economic Review,
Elsevier, vol. 43(4-6), pages 915-923, April.
- Blomström, Magnus & Sjöholm, Fredrik, 1998. "Technology Transfer and Spillovers: Does Local Participation with Multinationals Matter?," Working Paper Series in Economics and Finance 268, Stockholm School of Economics.
- Magnus Blomstrom & Fredrik Sjoholm, 1998. "Technology Transfer and Spillovers? Does Local Participation with Multinationals Matter?," NBER Working Papers 6816, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
- Blomström, Magnus & Sjöholm, Fredrik, 1998. "Technology, Transfer and Spillovers: Does Local Participation With Multinationals Matter?," CEPR Discussion Papers 2048, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
- Sophia Dimelis & Helen Louri, 2004. "Foreign direct investment and technology spillovers: Which firms really benefit?," Review of World Economics (Weltwirtschaftliches Archiv), Springer, vol. 140(2), pages 230-253, June.
- Liu, Zhiqiang, 2008. "Foreign direct investment and technology spillovers: Theory and evidence," Journal of Development Economics, Elsevier, vol. 85(1-2), pages 176-193, February.
- Frances Ruane & Ali Ugur, 2002. "Foreign Direct Investment And Productivity Spillovers In The Irish Manufacturing Industry: Evidence From Firm Level Panel Data," Trinity Economics Papers 20026, Trinity College Dublin, Department of Economics.
- Kamal Saggi, 2002.
"Trade, Foreign Direct Investment, and International Technology Transfer: A Survey,"
World Bank Research Observer,
World Bank Group, vol. 17(2), pages 191-235, September.
- Saggi, Kamal, 2000. "Trade, foreign direct investment, and international technology transfer : a survey," Policy Research Working Paper Series 2349, The World Bank.
- Eduardo Borensztein & Jose De Gregorio & Jong-Wha Lee, 1995.
"How Does Foreign Direct Investment Affect Economic Growth?,"
NBER Working Papers
5057, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
- Borensztein, E. & De Gregorio, J. & Lee, J-W., 1998. "How does foreign direct investment affect economic growth?1," Journal of International Economics, Elsevier, vol. 45(1), pages 115-135, June.
- Lucia Piscitello & Larissa Rabbiosi, 2005. "The impact of inward FDI on local companies' labour productivity: evidence from the Italian case," International Journal of the Economics of Business, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 12(1), pages 35-51.
- Subash Sasidharan & A. Ramanathan, 2007. "Foreign Direct Investment and spillovers: evidence from Indian manufacturing," International Journal of Trade and Global Markets, Inderscience Enterprises Ltd, vol. 1(1), pages 5-22.
- Ari Kokko & Mario Zejan & Ruben Tansini, 2001. "Trade regimes and spillover effects of FDI: Evidence from Uruguay," Review of World Economics (Weltwirtschaftliches Archiv), Springer, vol. 137(1), pages 124-149, March.
- Frances Ruane & Ali Uğur, 2005. "Foreign direct investment and productivity spillovers in Irish manufacturing industry: evidence from plant level panel data," International Journal of the Economics of Business, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 12(1), pages 53-66.
- Glass, Amy Jocelyn & Saggi, Kamal, 1998. "International technology transfer and the technology gap," Journal of Development Economics, Elsevier, vol. 55(2), pages 369-398, April.
- Frank Barry & Holger Gorg & Eric Strobl, 2005. "Foreign direct investment and wages in domestic firms in Ireland: Productivity spillovers versus labour-market crowding out," International Journal of the Economics of Business, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 12(1), pages 67-84.
- Sinani, Evis & Meyer, Klaus E., 2004. "Spillovers of technology transfer from FDI: the case of Estonia," Journal of Comparative Economics, Elsevier, vol. 32(3), pages 445-466, September.
- Damijan, Joze P. & Knell, Mark & Majcen, Boris & Rojec, Matija, 2003. "The role of FDI, R&D accumulation and trade in transferring technology to transition countries: evidence from firm panel data for eight transition countries," Economic Systems, Elsevier, vol. 27(2), pages 189-204, June.
- Yih-Chyi Chuang & Chi-Mei Lin, 1999. "Foreign direct investment, R&D and spillover efficiency: Evidence from Taiwan's manufacturing firms," Journal of Development Studies, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 35(4), pages 117-137.
- Blomstrom, Magnus & Persson, Hakan, 1983. "Foreign investment and spillover efficiency in an underdeveloped economy: Evidence from the Mexican manufacturing industry," World Development, Elsevier, vol. 11(6), pages 493-501, June.
- Liu, Xiaming & Parker, David & Vaidya, Kirit & Wei, Yingqi, 2001. "The impact of foreign direct investment on labour productivity in the Chinese electronics industry," International Business Review, Elsevier, vol. 10(4), pages 421-439, August.
- Razmi, Arslan, 2011. "Must improved labor standards hurt accumulation in the targeted sector? Stylized analysis of a developing economy," Structural Change and Economic Dynamics, Elsevier, vol. 22(4), pages 299-312.
- Savuth Cheng, 2012. "Foreign direct investment and productivity spillovers: Empirical evidence from Cambodia," Economics Bulletin, AccessEcon, vol. 32(3), pages 2015-2025.
- Anagaw Derseh Mebratie & Arjun S. Bedi, 2013.
"Foreign direct investment, black economic empowerment and labour productivity in South Africa,"
The Journal of International Trade & Economic Development,
Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 22(1), pages 94-115, February.
- Mebratie, Anagaw Derseh & Bedi, Arjun S., 2011. "Foreign Direct Investment, Black Economic Empowerment and Labour Productivity in South Africa," IZA Discussion Papers 6048, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
- Suyanto & Salim, Ruhul A. & Bloch, Harry, 2009. "Does Foreign Direct Investment Lead to Productivity Spillovers? Firm Level Evidence from Indonesia," World Development, Elsevier, vol. 37(12), pages 1861-1876, December.
- Bory Seng, 2010. "The Driving Forces Underlying the Growth of Total Factor Productivity in Cambodia," TEMEP Discussion Papers 201068, Seoul National University; Technology Management, Economics, and Policy Program (TEMEP), revised Oct 2010.
For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (Joeri Nys).
If references are entirely missing, you can add them using this form.