Distance on FDI and Trade: The Roles of China and Mexico in the Pacific Basin
In this study, we investigate the dynamics of the trilateral trade relationship among the U.S., Japan and an emerging economy in the Pacific Basin. Our particular attention is paid to two emerging countries; China and Mexico. In what we call the “triangular trade approach,” we explore how Japanese trade with and foreign direct investment to an emerging economy affect its exports to the US market. We apply the trilateral trade approach to eight Southeast Asian countries, four American continent countries and four European countries. Our empirical results suggest that the exports of China and Mexico are directly competing with those of Japan in US markets while the exports of China and Mexico to the US also appears to be promoted partly by Japanese exports to these countries. However, after controlling for Japan’s FDI to these countries, the trade enhancing effect of Japanese exports disappears for China, leading us to conclude that Japanese exports to China are positively correlated with Chinese exports to the US through an increase in vertical trade between Japanese multinationals and their affiliates in China. Our results indicate important distinction about two distances: proximity to home country and proximity to market.
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