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Testing for horizontal and vertical foreign investment spillovers in China, 1998–2007

  • Du, Luosha
  • Harrison, Ann
  • Jefferson, Gary H.

As with many developing countries, the Chinese government hopes that knowledge brought by multinationals will spill over to domestic industries and increase their productivity. In this paper, we show that foreign investment originating outside of Hong Kong, Macau, and Taiwan has positive effects on individual firm level productivity, while foreign investment from HKMT firms does not. We also test for both horizontal (within the same industry) and vertical (upstream or downstream) linkages from foreign investment. Using a manufacturing firm-level panel for 1998 through 2007, we find zero or weak positive horizontal externalities. However, our results show that foreign direct investment (FDI) has generated positive productivity spillovers to domestic firms via backward linkages (the contacts between foreign affiliates and their local suppliers in downstream sectors) as well as forward linkages (between foreign suppliers and their local buyers in the upstream sectors).

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Article provided by Elsevier in its journal Journal of Asian Economics.

Volume (Year): 23 (2012)
Issue (Month): 3 ()
Pages: 234-243

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Handle: RePEc:eee:asieco:v:23:y:2012:i:3:p:234-243
Contact details of provider: Web page: http://www.elsevier.com/locate/asieco

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  1. Lin, Ping & Liu, Zhuomin & Zhang, Yifan, 2009. "Do Chinese domestic firms benefit from FDI inflow?: Evidence of horizontal and vertical spillovers," China Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 20(4), pages 677-691, December.
  2. Smarzynska, Beata K., 2002. "Does foreign direct investment increase the productivity of domestic firms : in search of spillovers through backward linkages," Policy Research Working Paper Series 2923, The World Bank.
  3. 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.
  4. George S Olley & Ariel Pakes, 1992. "The Dynamics Of Productivity In The Telecommunications Equipment Industry," Working Papers 92-2, Center for Economic Studies, U.S. Census Bureau.
  5. Blomstrom, Magnus, 1986. "Foreign Investment and Productive Efficiency: The Case of Mexico," Journal of Industrial Economics, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 35(1), pages 97-110, September.
  6. Zvi Griliches & Jacques Mairesse, 1995. "Production Functions: The Search for Identification," NBER Working Papers 5067, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  7. 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.
  8. James R. Markusen & Anthony J. Venables, 1995. "Multinational Firms and The New Trade Theory," NBER Working Papers 5036, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  9. Haddad, Mona & Harrison, Ann, 1993. "Are there positive spillovers from direct foreign investment? : Evidence from panel data for Morocco," Journal of Development Economics, Elsevier, vol. 42(1), pages 51-74, October.
  10. Jozef Konings, 2001. "The effects of foreign direct investment on domestic firms," The Economics of Transition, The European Bank for Reconstruction and Development, vol. 9(3), pages 619-633, November.
  11. 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.
  12. Albert G. Z. Hu & Gary H. Jefferson, 2002. "FDI Impact and Spillover: Evidence from China's Electronic and Textile Industries," The World Economy, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 25(8), pages 1063-1076, 08.
  13. Moulton, Brent R, 1990. "An Illustration of a Pitfall in Estimating the Effects of Aggregate Variables on Micro Unit," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 72(2), pages 334-38, May.
  14. Caves, Richard E, 1974. "Multinational Firms, Competition, and Productivity in Host-Country Markets," Economica, London School of Economics and Political Science, vol. 41(162), pages 176-93, May.
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