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The Regional Impact of Bilateral Investment Treaties on Foreign Direct Investment

Listed author(s):
  • Arjan Lejour

    ()

  • Maria Salfi

We examine the impact of bilateral investment treaties (BITs) on bilateral FDI stocks using extensive data from 1985 until 2011. We correct for endogeneity using indicators for governance and membership of international organisations. We find that ratified BITs increase on average bilateral FDI stocks by 35% compared to those of country pairs without a treaty. Upper middle income countries seem to benefit the most from ratified treaties whereas high income countries with high governance levels do not profit at all. In addition, lower middle and low income countries experience significantly larger inward FDI stocks from partner’s countries. Distinguishing by region, we find that ratified BITs increase FDI stocks mainly in East Asia and Middle & Eastern Europe.

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Paper provided by CPB Netherlands Bureau for Economic Policy Analysis in its series CPB Discussion Paper with number 298.

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Date of creation: Jan 2015
Handle: RePEc:cpb:discus:298
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  1. David L. Carr & James R. Markusen & Keith E. Maskus, 2001. "Estimating the Knowledge-Capital Model of the Multinational Enterprise," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 91(3), pages 693-708, June.
  2. Aisbett, Emma, 2007. "Bilateral Investment Treaties and Foreign Direct Investment: Correlation versus Causation," MPRA Paper 2255, University Library of Munich, Germany.
  3. James E. Anderson & Eric van Wincoop, 2003. "Gravity with Gravitas: A Solution to the Border Puzzle," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 93(1), pages 170-192, March.
  4. Neumayer, Eric & Spess, Laura, 2005. "Do bilateral investment treaties increase foreign direct investment to developing countries?," World Development, Elsevier, vol. 33(10), pages 1567-1585, October.
  5. Egger, Peter & Pfaffermayr, Michael, 2004. "The impact of bilateral investment treaties on foreign direct investment," Journal of Comparative Economics, Elsevier, vol. 32(4), pages 788-804, December.
  6. Medvedev, Denis, 2012. "Beyond Trade: The Impact of Preferential Trade Agreements on FDI Inflows," World Development, Elsevier, vol. 40(1), pages 49-61.
  7. Markusen, James R & Maskus, Keith E, 2002. "Discriminating among Alternative Theories of the Multinational Enterprise," Review of International Economics, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 10(4), pages 694-707, November.
  8. Berger, Axel & Busse, Matthias & Nunnenkamp, Peter & Roy, Martin, 2011. "More stringent BITs, less ambiguous effects on FDI? Not a bit!," Economics Letters, Elsevier, vol. 112(3), pages 270-272, September.
  9. Peter Egger & Valeria Merlo, 2007. "The Impact of Bilateral Investment Treaties on FDI Dynamics," The World Economy, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 30(10), pages 1536-1549, October.
  10. Jennifer Tobin & Susan Rose-Ackerman, 2003. "Foreign Direct Investment and the Business Environment in Developing Countries: the Impact of Bilateral Investment Treaties," William Davidson Institute Working Papers Series 587, William Davidson Institute at the University of Michigan.
  11. Peter Egger & Mario Larch & Michael Pfaffermayr & Hannes Winner, 2006. "The impact of endogenous tax treaties on foreign direct investment: theory and evidence," Canadian Journal of Economics, Canadian Economics Association, vol. 39(3), pages 901-931, August.
  12. Peter Egger & Valeria Merlo, 2012. "BITs Bite: An Anatomy of the Impact of Bilateral Investment Treaties on Multinational Firms," Scandinavian Journal of Economics, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 114(4), pages 1240-1266, December.
  13. Eric Neumayer, 2007. "Do double taxation treaties increase foreign direct investment to developing countries?," Journal of Development Studies, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 43(8), pages 1501-1519.
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