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The Declining barriers to Foreign Direct Investments and how to see them

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Abstract

Although Foreign Direct Investments (FDI) are as important to the world economy as exports, the extensive literature on trade costs has no strong parallel for FDI. Data are hard to come by, and many of the barriers to FDI are unobservable. This paper circumvents the problem by inferring the barriers to FDI that are consistent with observed FDI data. I describe the distribution and evolution of these barriers to FDI between pairs of 28 OECD countries from 1985 to 2008. On average, barriers to FDI were halved every 4.8 years. Geography is a key determinant, but GDP per capita also plays a leading role. Decomposing the growth in FDI, I show that it has mainly been driven by lower bilateral barriers (75%), not by economic growth, and that bilateral FDI stocks will tend to crowd each other out, lowering their yearly growth by -3%.

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File URL: ftp://mse.univ-paris1.fr/pub/mse/CES2012/12015.pdf
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Paper provided by Université Panthéon-Sorbonne (Paris 1), Centre d'Economie de la Sorbonne in its series Documents de travail du Centre d'Economie de la Sorbonne with number 12015.

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Length: 28 pages
Date of creation: Feb 2012
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Handle: RePEc:mse:cesdoc:12015

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Keywords: Foreign direct investment; economic integration; gravity.;

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  1. Mutti, John & Grubert, Harry, 2004. "Empirical asymmetries in foreign direct investment and taxation," Journal of International Economics, Elsevier, vol. 62(2), pages 337-358, March.
  2. Head, Keith & Ries, John, 2008. "FDI as an outcome of the market for corporate control: Theory and evidence," Journal of International Economics, Elsevier, vol. 74(1), pages 2-20, January.
  3. Danny McGowan & Chris Milner, . "Trade Costs and Trade Composition," Discussion Papers 11/11, University of Nottingham, GEP.
  4. Natalia Ramondo & Andrés Rodríguez-Clare, 2009. "Trade, Multinational Production, and the Gains from Openness," NBER Working Papers 15604, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  5. James E. Anderson & Eric van Wincoop, 2000. "Gravity with Gravitas: A Solution to the Border Puzzle," Boston College Working Papers in Economics 485, Boston College Department of Economics.
  6. Dennis Novy, 2013. "Gravity Redux: Measuring International Trade Costs With Panel Data," Economic Inquiry, Western Economic Association International, vol. 51(1), pages 101-121, 01.
  7. Joao Santos Silva & Silvana Tenreyro, 2005. "The Log of Gravity," CEP Discussion Papers dp0701, Centre for Economic Performance, LSE.
  8. Kleinert, Jörn & Toubal, Farid, 2007. "Gravity for FDI," Tübinger Diskussionsbeiträge 313, University of Tübingen, School of Business and Economics.
  9. Crozet, Matthieu & Mayer, Thierry & Mucchielli, Jean-Louis, 2004. "How do firms agglomerate? A study of FDI in France," Regional Science and Urban Economics, Elsevier, vol. 34(1), pages 27-54, January.
  10. Jacks, David S. & Meissner, Christopher M. & Novy, Dennis, 2011. "Trade booms, trade busts, and trade costs," Journal of International Economics, Elsevier, vol. 83(2), pages 185-201, March.
  11. Ariel T. Burstein & Alexander Monge-Naranjo, 2009. "Foreign Know-How, Firm Control, and the Income of Developing Countries-super-," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 124(1), pages 149-195, February.
  12. David S. Jacks & Christopher M. Meissner & Dennis Novy, 2008. "Trade Costs, 1870-2000," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 98(2), pages 529-34, May.
  13. Chen, Natalie & Novy, Dennis, 2011. "Gravity, trade integration, and heterogeneity across industries," Journal of International Economics, Elsevier, vol. 85(2), pages 206-221.
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