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Foreign Direct Investment and the Risk of Expropriation

  • Thomas, Jonathan
  • Worrall, Tim

When a transnational corporation invests abroad, it runs the risk that its investment will be expropriated. Any agreements or contracts undertaken by the transnational company and the host country must be designed to be self-enforcing. This paper extends previous work on investment when contracts are incomplete to a dynamic context. It is shown that investment is initially underprovided but increases over time and for certain parameter values tends to the efficient level. The expected future discounted returns to the transnational company decline over time, extending R. Vernon's (1971) observation of the obsolescing bargain. Copyright 1994 by The Review of Economic Studies Limited.

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Article provided by Wiley Blackwell in its journal Review of Economic Studies.

Volume (Year): 61 (1994)
Issue (Month): 1 (January)
Pages: 81-108

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Handle: RePEc:bla:restud:v:61:y:1994:i:1:p:81-108
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  1. Jonathan Eaton & Mark Gersovitz, 1982. "A Theory of Expropriation and Deviations From Perfect Capital Mobility," NBER Working Papers 0972, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  2. Joseph Farrell and Eric Maskin., 1987. "Renegotiation in Repeated Games," Economics Working Papers 8759, University of California at Berkeley.
  3. Oliver Hart & Sanford Grossman, 1985. "The Costs and Benefits of Ownership: A Theory of Vertical and Lateral Integration," Working papers 372, Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), Department of Economics.
  4. Laffont, Jean-Jacques & Tirole, Jean, 1988. "The Dynamics of Incentive Contracts," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 56(5), pages 1153-75, September.
  5. Tirole, Jean, 1986. "Procurement and Renegotiation," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 94(2), pages 235-59, April.
  6. Hart, Oliver D & Moore, John, 1988. "Incomplete Contracts and Renegotiation," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 56(4), pages 755-85, July.
  7. Asheim, G.B. & Strand, J., 1989. "Long-Term Union-Firm Contracts," Memorandum 08/1989, Oslo University, Department of Economics.
  8. Abreu, Dilip & Pearce, David & Stacchetti, Ennio, 1986. "Optimal cartel equilibria with imperfect monitoring," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 39(1), pages 251-269, June.
  9. Doyle, Christopher & van Wijnbergen, Sweder, 1984. "Taxation of Foreign Multinationals: A Sequential Bargaining Approach to Tax Holidays," CEPR Discussion Papers 25, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  10. Long, Ngo Van, 1975. "Resource extraction under the uncertainty about possible nationalization," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 10(1), pages 42-53, February.
  11. Klein, Benjamin & Crawford, Robert G & Alchian, Armen A, 1978. "Vertical Integration, Appropriable Rents, and the Competitive Contracting Process," Journal of Law and Economics, University of Chicago Press, vol. 21(2), pages 297-326, October.
  12. Kobrin, Stephen J., 1987. "Testing the bargaining hypothesis in the manufacturing sector in developing countries," International Organization, Cambridge University Press, vol. 41(04), pages 609-638, September.
  13. Thomas, Jonathan & Worrall, Tim, 1988. "Self-enforcing Wage Contracts," Review of Economic Studies, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 55(4), pages 541-54, October.
  14. Bond, Eric W & Samuelson, Larry, 1986. "Tax Holidays as Signals," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 76(4), pages 820-26, September.
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