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The Role of Home and Host Country Characteristics in FDI: Firm-Level Evidence from Japan, Korea and Taiwan

  • Kazunobu Hayakawa
  • Hyun-Hoon Lee
  • Donghyun Park

There is a large and growing empirical literature that investigates the determinants of outward foreign direct investment (FDI). This literature examines primarily the effect of host country characteristics on FDI even though home country characteristics also influence the decision of firms to invest abroad. In this paper, we examine the role of both host and home country characteristics in FDI. To do so, we constructed a firm-level database of outward FDI from Japan, Korea and Taiwan. Our empirical analysis yields two main findings. First, host countries with better environment for FDI, in terms of larger market size, smaller fixed entry costs and lower wages, attract more foreign investors. Second, firms from home countries with higher wages are more likely to invest abroad. An interesting and significant policy implication of our empirical evidence is that policy-makers seeking to promote FDI inflows should prioritize countries with higher wages.

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Article provided by Taylor & Francis Journals in its journal Global Economic Review.

Volume (Year): 42 (2013)
Issue (Month): 2 (June)
Pages: 99-112

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Handle: RePEc:taf:glecrv:v:42:y:2013:i:2:p:99-112
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  1. Chen, Maggie Xiaoyang & Moore, Michael, 2009. "Location decision of heterogeneous multinational firms," MPRA Paper 33482, University Library of Munich, Germany.
  2. Kleinert, Jörn & Toubal, Farid, 2007. "Gravity for FDI," Tübinger Diskussionsbeiträge 313, University of Tübingen, School of Business and Economics.
  3. Gene M. Grossman & Elhanan Helpman & Adam Szeidl, 2003. "Optimal Integration Strategies for the Multinational Firm," Working Papers 142, Princeton University, Woodrow Wilson School of Public and International Affairs, Discussion Papers in Economics.
  4. Yeaple, Stephen & Helpman, Elhanan & Melitz, Marc, 2004. "Export versus FDI with Heterogeneous Firms," Scholarly Articles 3229098, Harvard University Department of Economics.
  5. Baltagi, Badi H. & Egger, Peter & Pfaffermayr, Michael, 2007. "Estimating models of complex FDI: Are there third-country effects?," Journal of Econometrics, Elsevier, vol. 140(1), pages 260-281, September.
  6. Karolina Ekholm & Rikard Forslid & James Markusen, 2003. "Export-Platform Foreign Direct Investment," NBER Working Papers 9517, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  7. Giorgio Barba Navaretti & Davide Castellani & Anne-Célia Disdier, 2010. "How does investing in cheap labour countries affect performance at home? Firm-level evidence from France and Italy," Oxford Economic Papers, Oxford University Press, vol. 62(2), pages 234-260, April.
  8. Aw, Bee Yan & Lee, Yi, 2008. "Firm heterogeneity and location choice of Taiwanese multinationals," Journal of International Economics, Elsevier, vol. 76(2), pages 403-415, December.
  9. Yeaple, Stephen Ross, 2003. "The complex integration strategies of multinationals and cross country dependencies in the structure of foreign direct investment," Journal of International Economics, Elsevier, vol. 60(2), pages 293-314, August.
  10. Aw, Bee Yan & Lee, Yi, 2008. "Firm heterogeneity and location choice of Taiwanese multinationals," Journal of International Economics, Elsevier, vol. 75(1), pages 167-179, May.
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