IDEAS home Printed from
MyIDEAS: Login to save this article or follow this journal

The contribution of outward direct investment to productivity changes within China, 1991-2007

  • Zhao, Wei
  • Liu, Ling
  • Zhao, Ting
Registered author(s):

    There has been a marked growth in recent years in outward direct investment (ODI) by developing countries, and in particular, by China. Previous studies have examined the impact on developing countries productivity of foreign direct investment (FDI) from developed countries. This paper looks at the effects of China's outward direct investment on growth in its own productivity, and at two specific reasons for this growth: technology sourcing and improvements in efficiency. These are examined using data from China's ODI in eight developed countries during the period 1991 to 2007. It appears that Chinese outward direct investment has had beneficial spill-over effects in improving total factor productivity growth over the period of the study, and that gains in efficiency have been the chief reason for this. Our vector auto regression (VAR) decomposition analysis also suggests that domestic R&D capital stocks are the most important source of productivity growth with greater contribution to technological progress. China is likely to continue to expand its ODI and it will be interesting to see whether the productivity gains continue at the same rate, and whether other developing countries also increase their ODI and reap the same benefits.

    If 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.

    File URL:
    Download Restriction: Full text for ScienceDirect subscribers only

    As the access to this document is restricted, you may want to look for a different version under "Related research" (further below) or search for a different version of it.

    Article provided by Elsevier in its journal Journal of International Management.

    Volume (Year): 16 (2010)
    Issue (Month): 2 (June)
    Pages: 121-130

    in new window

    Handle: RePEc:eee:intman:v:16:y:2010:i:2:p:121-130
    Contact details of provider: Web page:

    Order Information: Postal:

    References listed on IDEAS
    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.:

    as in new window
    1. 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.
    2. Aghion, P. & Howitt, P., 1989. "A Model Of Growth Through Creative Destruction," Working papers 527, Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), Department of Economics.
    3. 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.
    4. Jonathan Eaton & Samuel Kortum, 1995. "Trade in Ideas: Patenting and Productivity in the OECD," NBER Working Papers 5049, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    5. Kogut, Bruce & Chang, Sea Jin, 1991. "Technological Capabilities and Japanese Foreign Direct Investment in the United States," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 73(3), pages 401-13, August.
    6. Blomström, Magnus & Kokko, Ari, 1996. "Multinational Corporations and Spillovers," SSE/EFI Working Paper Series in Economics and Finance 99, Stockholm School of Economics.
    7. Robert E. Hall & Charles I. Jones, 1999. "Why Do Some Countries Produce So Much More Output per Worker than Others?," NBER Working Papers 6564, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    8. Adam B. Jaffe & Manuel Trajtenberg & Rebecca Henderson, 1992. "Geographic Localization of Knowledge Spillovers as Evidenced by Patent Citations," NBER Working Papers 3993, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    9. Bruno Van Pottelsberghe De La Potterie & Frank Lichtenberg, 2001. "Does Foreign Direct Investment Transfer Technology Across Borders?," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 83(3), pages 490-497, August.
    10. Wilbur Chung & W Mitchell & B Yeung, 2003. "Foreign direct investment and host country productivity: the American automotive component industry in the 1980s," Journal of International Business Studies, Palgrave Macmillan, vol. 34(2), pages 199-218, March.
    11. Kokko, Ari, 1994. "Technology, market characteristics, and spillovers," Journal of Development Economics, Elsevier, vol. 43(2), pages 279-293, April.
    12. 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.
    13. Romer, Paul M, 1990. "Endogenous Technological Change," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 98(5), pages S71-102, October.
    14. Fosfuri, Andrea & Motta, Massimo & Rønde, Thomas, 1999. "Foreign Direct Investment and Spillovers through Workers' Mobility," CEPR Discussion Papers 2194, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
    15. 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.
    16. Wilbur Chung, 2001. "Identifying Technology Transfer in Foreign Direct Investment: Influence of Industry Conditions and Investing Firm Motives," Journal of International Business Studies, Palgrave Macmillan, vol. 32(2), pages 211-229, June.
    17. Damien D. Neven & Georges Siotis, 1993. "Foreign direct investment in the european community: Some policy issues," ULB Institutional Repository 2013/184831, ULB -- Universite Libre de Bruxelles.
    18. 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.
    19. John Child & Suzana B. Rodrigues, 2005. "The Internationalization of Chinese Firms: A Case for Theoretical Extension?," Management and Organization Review, International Association of Chinese Management Research, vol. 1(3), pages 381-410, November.
    20. Rivera-Batiz, Luis A. & Romer, Paul M., 1991. "International trade with endogenous technological change," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 35(4), pages 971-1001, May.
    21. Rolf Fare & Shawna Grosskopf & Wen-Fu Lee, 2001. "Productivity and technical change: the case of Taiwan," Applied Economics, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 33(15), pages 1911-1925.
    22. Globerman, Steven & Kokko, Ari & Sjoholm, Fredrik, 2000. "International Technology Diffusion: Evidence from Swedish Patent Data," Kyklos, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 53(1), pages 17-38.
    23. Walid Hejazi & A Edward Safarian, 1999. "Trade, Foreign Direct Investment, and R&D Spillovers," Journal of International Business Studies, Palgrave Macmillan, vol. 30(3), pages 491-511, September.
    24. Grossman, G.M. & Helpman, E., 1988. "Comparative Advantage And Long-Run Growth," Papers 39-88, Tel Aviv.
    25. Aghion, Philippe & Howitt, Peter, 1992. "A Model of Growth Through Creative Destruction," Scholarly Articles 12490578, Harvard University Department of Economics.
    26. Henrik Braconier & Karolina Ekholm, 2002. "Foreign Direct Investment in Central and Eastern Europe: Employment Effects in the EU," Development Working Papers 161, Centro Studi Luca d\'Agliano, University of Milano.
    27. Wolfgang Keller, 2004. "International Technology Diffusion," Journal of Economic Literature, American Economic Association, vol. 42(3), pages 752-782, September.
    28. Peter J Buckley & L Jeremy Clegg & Adam R Cross & Xin Liu & Hinrich Voss & Ping Zheng, 2007. "The determinants of Chinese outward foreign direct investment," Journal of International Business Studies, Palgrave Macmillan, vol. 38(4), pages 499-518, July.
    29. 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.
    30. Blomstrom, Magnus & Globerman, Steven & Kokko, Ari, 1999. "The determinants of host country spillovers from foreign direct investment: review and synthesis of the literature," SSE/EFI Working Paper Series in Economics and Finance 502, Stockholm School of Economics.
    31. Child, John & Rodrigues, Suzana B., 2005. "The Internationalization of Chinese Firms: A Case for Theoretical Extension?," Management and Organization Review, Cambridge University Press, vol. 1(03), pages 381-410, November.
    32. 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.
    Full references (including those not matched with items on IDEAS)

    This item is not listed on Wikipedia, on a reading list or among the top items on IDEAS.

    When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:eee:intman:v:16:y:2010:i:2:p:121-130. See general information about how to correct material in RePEc.

    For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (Zhang, Lei)

    If you have authored this item and are not yet registered with RePEc, we encourage you to do it here. This allows to link your profile to this item. It also allows you to accept potential citations to this item that we are uncertain about.

    If references are entirely missing, you can add them using this form.

    If the full references list an item that is present in RePEc, but the system did not link to it, you can help with this form.

    If you know of missing items citing this one, you can help us creating those links by adding the relevant references in the same way as above, for each refering item. If you are a registered author of this item, you may also want to check the "citations" tab in your profile, as there may be some citations waiting for confirmation.

    Please note that corrections may take a couple of weeks to filter through the various RePEc services.

    This information is provided to you by IDEAS at the Research Division of the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis using RePEc data.