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FDI inflows in Europe: Does investment promotion work?

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  • Crescenzi, Riccardo
  • Di Cataldo, Marco
  • Giua, Mara

Abstract

Can active investment promotion efforts attract FDI towards areas and sectors that would not otherwise be targeted? This paper leverages an ad hoc survey on national and sub-national Investment Promotion Agencies (IPAs) in Europe and applies state-of-the-art policy evaluation methods to estimate the impact of IPAs on FDI attraction. The results show that FDI responds to IPAs even in advanced economies. Sub-national IPAs, operating in closer proximity to investors' operations, attract FDI in particular towards less developed areas where market and institutional failures are stronger. IPAs influence FDI over and above other policies targeting the general economic improvement of the host economies. Impacts are concentrated in knowledge-intensive sectors where collaborative systemic conditions are more relevant. IPAs work best for less experienced companies - ‘occasional’ investors - more likely to suffer from institutional failures. Finally, IPAs are equally effective in attracting companies from both outside and inside the EU Single Market even if the latter are less likely to suffer from regulatory or information asymmetries. Overall, this evidence sheds new light on the role of sub-national IPAs as local ‘institutional plumbers’ in support of foreign investors and their operations.

Suggested Citation

  • Crescenzi, Riccardo & Di Cataldo, Marco & Giua, Mara, 2021. "FDI inflows in Europe: Does investment promotion work?," Journal of International Economics, Elsevier, vol. 132(C).
  • Handle: RePEc:eee:inecon:v:132:y:2021:i:c:s0022199621000775
    DOI: 10.1016/j.jinteco.2021.103497
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    Cited by:

    1. Jerónimo Carballo & Ignacio Marra de Artiñano & Christian Volpe Martincus, 2021. "Information Frictions, Investment Promotion, and Multinational Production: Firm-Level Evidence," CESifo Working Paper Series 9043, CESifo.
    2. Nguyen, Cuong & Tran, Tuyen & Vu, Huong, 2021. "The Long-Term Effects of War on Foreign Direct Investment and Economic Development: Evidence from Vietnam," MPRA Paper 111891, University Library of Munich, Germany.
    3. Riccardo Crescenzi & Arnaud Dyèvre & Frank Neffke, 2022. "Innovation Catalysts: How Multinationals Reshape the Global Geography of Innovation," Economic Geography, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 98(3), pages 199-227, May.
    4. Amendolagine, Vito & Crescenzi, Riccardo & Rabellotti, Roberta, 2022. "The geography of acquisitions and greenfield investments: firm heterogeneity and regional institutional conditions," LSE Research Online Documents on Economics 115597, London School of Economics and Political Science, LSE Library.
    5. Siedschlag, Iulia & Yan, Weijie, 2021. "Enhancing the attractiveness of the all-island economy to high-value sectors," Research Series, Economic and Social Research Institute (ESRI), number RS133.
    6. Sjöholm, Fredrik, 2021. "Industrial Policy and Foreign Direct Investment," Working Paper Series 1400, Research Institute of Industrial Economics.

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    More about this item

    Keywords

    Foreign direct investment; Investment promotion; Multinationals; Institutions; European Union;
    All these keywords.

    JEL classification:

    • F21 - International Economics - - International Factor Movements and International Business - - - International Investment; Long-Term Capital Movements
    • F23 - International Economics - - International Factor Movements and International Business - - - Multinational Firms; International Business
    • O24 - Economic Development, Innovation, Technological Change, and Growth - - Development Planning and Policy - - - Trade Policy; Factor Movement; Foreign Exchange Policy
    • R58 - Urban, Rural, Regional, Real Estate, and Transportation Economics - - Regional Government Analysis - - - Regional Development Planning and Policy

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