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The Declining Barriers to Foreign Direct Investments and How to See Them

  • Christian Gormsen

    ()

    (CES - Centre d'économie de la Sorbonne - CNRS : UMR8174 - Université Paris I - Panthéon-Sorbonne, EEP-PSE - Ecole d'Économie de Paris - Paris School of Economics - Ecole d'Économie de Paris)

Although Foreign Direct Investments (FDI) are as important to the world economy as exports, the extensive literature on trade costs has no strong parallel for FDI. Data are hard to come by, and many of the barriers to FDI are unobservable. This paper circumvents the problem by inferring the barriers to FDI that are consistent with observed FDI data. I describe the distribution and evolution of these barriers to FDI between pairs of 28 OECD countries from 1985 to 2008. On average, barriers to FDI were halved every 4.8 years. Geography is a key determinant, but GDP per capita also plays a leading role. Decomposing the growth in FDI, I show that it has mainly been driven by lower bilateral barriers (75%), not by economic growth, and that bilateral FDI stocks will tend to crowd each other out, lowering their yearly growth by -3%.

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Paper provided by HAL in its series Université Paris1 Panthéon-Sorbonne (Post-Print and Working Papers) with number halshs-00676508.

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Date of creation: Feb 2012
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Handle: RePEc:hal:cesptp:halshs-00676508
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  1. Kleinert, Jörn & Toubal, Farid, 2005. "Gravity for FDI," Center for European, Governance and Economic Development Research Discussion Papers 46, University of Goettingen, Department of Economics.
  2. Natalia Ramondo & Andr�s Rodr�guez-Clare, 2013. "Trade, Multinational Production, and the Gains from Openness," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 121(2), pages 273 - 322.
  3. David S. Jacks & Christopher M. Meissner & Dennis Novy, 2009. "Trade Booms, Trade Busts, and Trade Costs," CESifo Working Paper Series 2767, CESifo Group Munich.
  4. Joao Santos Silva & Silvana Tenreyro, 2005. "The log of gravity," LSE Research Online Documents on Economics 3744, London School of Economics and Political Science, LSE Library.
  5. Mutti, John & Grubert, Harry, 2004. "Empirical asymmetries in foreign direct investment and taxation," Journal of International Economics, Elsevier, vol. 62(2), pages 337-358, March.
  6. Dennis Novy, 2012. "Gravity Redux: Measuring International Trade Costs with Panel Data," CEP Discussion Papers dp1114, Centre for Economic Performance, LSE.
  7. 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.
  8. Head, Keith & Ries, John, 2008. "FDI as an outcome of the market for corporate control: Theory and evidence," Journal of International Economics, Elsevier, vol. 74(1), pages 2-20, January.
  9. David S. Jacks & Christopher M. Meissner & Dennis Novy, 2008. "Trade Costs, 1870-2000," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 98(2), pages 529-34, May.
  10. Ariel T. Burstein & Alexander Monge-Naranjo, 2009. "Foreign Know-How, Firm Control, and the Income of Developing Countries-super-," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 124(1), pages 149-195, February.
  11. CHRIS MILNER & DANNY McGOWAN, 2013. "Trade Costs And Trade Composition," Economic Inquiry, Western Economic Association International, vol. 51(3), pages 1886-1902, 07.
  12. Keith Head & John Ries, 2001. "Increasing Returns versus National Product Differentiation as an Explanation for the Pattern of U.S.-Canada Trade," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 91(4), pages 858-876, September.
  13. Chen, Natalie & Novy, Dennis, 2011. "Gravity, trade integration, and heterogeneity across industries," Journal of International Economics, Elsevier, vol. 85(2), pages 206-221.
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