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Optimal Extortion and Political Risk Insurance

Author

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  • Frédéric Koessler

    (PSE - Paris-Jourdan Sciences Economiques - CNRS - Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique - ENPC - École des Ponts ParisTech - EHESS - École des hautes études en sciences sociales - INRA - Institut National de la Recherche Agronomique - ENS Paris - École normale supérieure - Paris, PSE - Paris School of Economics)

  • Ariane Lambert-Mogiliansky

    (PSE - Paris-Jourdan Sciences Economiques - CNRS - Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique - ENPC - École des Ponts ParisTech - EHESS - École des hautes études en sciences sociales - INRA - Institut National de la Recherche Agronomique - ENS Paris - École normale supérieure - Paris, PSE - Paris School of Economics)

Abstract

We study the problem faced by firms that invest in a foreign country characterized by weak governance. Our focus is on extortion relying on the threat of expropriation and bureaucratic harassment. The bureaucrat's power is characterized by looking at a general extortion mechanism adapted from Myerson's (1981) optimal auction theory. This characterization is used to study the determinants of the quality of governance and whether and how political risk insurance of foreign direct investments improve upon it. We find that it does not always improve upon all governance indicators. It always decreases the bureaucrat's total revenue from corruption, but it may also increase the risk of expropriation and the extortion bribes paid by some firms.

Suggested Citation

  • Frédéric Koessler & Ariane Lambert-Mogiliansky, 2012. "Optimal Extortion and Political Risk Insurance," PSE Working Papers halshs-00672963, HAL.
  • Handle: RePEc:hal:psewpa:halshs-00672963
    Note: View the original document on HAL open archive server: https://halshs.archives-ouvertes.fr/halshs-00672963
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    1. O. Compte & A. Lambert-Mogiliansky & T. Verdier, 2005. "Corruption and Competition in Procurement Auctions," RAND Journal of Economics, The RAND Corporation, vol. 36(1), pages 1-15, Spring.
    2. Jonathan Thomas & Tim Worrall, 1994. "Foreign Direct Investment and the Risk of Expropriation," Review of Economic Studies, Oxford University Press, vol. 61(1), pages 81-108.
    3. Koessler, Frédéric & Lambert-Mogiliansky, Ariane, 2013. "Committing to transparency to resist corruption," Journal of Development Economics, Elsevier, vol. 100(1), pages 117-126.
    4. Roberto Burguet & Yeon-Koo Che, 2004. "Competitive Procurement with Corruption," RAND Journal of Economics, The RAND Corporation, vol. 35(1), pages 50-68, Spring.
    5. Ariane Lambert-Mogiliansky & Mukul Majumdar & Roy Radner, 2009. "Strategic analysis of petty corruption with an intermediary," Review of Economic Design, Springer;Society for Economic Design, vol. 13(1), pages 45-57, April.
    6. Figueroa, Nicolás & Skreta, Vasiliki, 2009. "The role of optimal threats in auction design," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 144(2), pages 884-897, March.
    7. Konrad, Kai A. & Skaperdas, Stergios, 1997. "Credible threats in extortion," Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Elsevier, vol. 33(1), pages 23-39, May.
    8. Tirole, Jean, 1986. "Hierarchies and Bureaucracies: On the Role of Collusion in Organizations," Journal of Law, Economics, and Organization, Oxford University Press, vol. 2(2), pages 181-214, Fall.
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    Keywords

    Auctions; Corruption; Expropriation; Extortion; Governance; Harassment; Mechanism Design; Political Constraints; Political Risk Insurance;

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