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Information Technology and Bilateral FDI: Theory and Evidence

  • Jeon, Bang Nam
  • Tang, Linghui
  • Zhu, Lei

This paper investigates the impact of communication cost on the FDI activities of multinational corporations (MNCs). First, we provide a theoretical foundation for a gravity-type FDI model, which shows that physical distance and communication technology are important determinants of FDI activities. Second, we apply the IT-augmented gravity model to bilateral FDI data for a total of 47 OECD and non-OECD countries from 1980 to 1997 and find that distance is negatively related to inward FDI stocks while the growth of IT, measured by teledensity and celldensity, has encouraged FDI significantly. The impact is found to be more prominent on FDI from G7 countries to OECD countriesthan to non-OECD countries, and more prominent in the 1990s than in the 1980s. Moreover, IT plays a more effective role by reducing communication cost when distance is beyond a threshold range.

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File URL: http://mpra.ub.uni-muenchen.de/36628/1/MPRA_paper_36628.pdf
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Paper provided by University Library of Munich, Germany in its series MPRA Paper with number 36628.

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Date of creation: 01 Feb 2012
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Handle: RePEc:pra:mprapa:36628
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  1. Bruce A. Blonigen & Ronald B. Davies, 2001. "The Effects of Bilateral Tax Treaties on U.S. FDI Activity," University of Oregon Economics Department Working Papers 2001-14, University of Oregon Economics Department, revised 01 Jan 2001.
  2. 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.
  3. James R. Markusen & Anthony J. Venables, 1995. "Multinational Firms and The New Trade Theory," NBER Working Papers 5036, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  4. Markusen, James R., 1984. "Multinationals, multi-plant economies, and the gains from trade," Journal of International Economics, Elsevier, vol. 16(3-4), pages 205-226, May.
  5. Richard G. Harris, 1995. "Trade and Communication Costs," Canadian Journal of Economics, Canadian Economics Association, vol. 28(s1), pages 46-75, November.
  6. Toru Kikuchi & Tetsuro Ichikawa, 2002. "Congestible communications networks and international trade," Canadian Journal of Economics, Canadian Economics Association, vol. 35(2), pages 331-340, May.
  7. Toru Kikuchi, 2003. "Interconnectivity of communications networks and international trade," Canadian Journal of Economics, Canadian Economics Association, vol. 36(1), pages 155-167, February.
  8. James R. Markusen, 1995. "The Boundaries of Multinational Enterprises and the Theory of International Trade," Journal of Economic Perspectives, American Economic Association, vol. 9(2), pages 169-189, Spring.
  9. Nam Jeon , Bang & F. Stone , Susan, 2000. "Foreign Direct Investment and Trade in the Asia-Pacific Region: Complementarity, Distance and Regional Economic Integration," Journal of Economic Integration, Center for Economic Integration, Sejong University, vol. 15, pages 460-485.
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