Outward FDI from Central and East European Transition Economies – A discrete choice analysis of location within the EU
The location determinants of outward foreign direct investment (OFDI) have received extensive attention in contemporary literature, largely from the perspective of advanced economies. Less attention has been focused on OFDI from emerging economies. This applies, in particular, to Central and East European Countries (CEEC). Apart from traditional OFDI motives such as market-seeking, there is a growing debate regarding the relevance of knowledge-seeking as an investment motive for firms from catch-up economies. We apply a conditional-logit approach to assess OFDI location factors at the host country level for a sample of 1,036 firms from 10 CEEC that entered the EU between 1995 and 2010. We find that firms from CEEC primarily target economies characterized by high growth rates and geographic proximity, i.e., often other transition economies within the EU. The impact of market size increases significantly after EU accession, when more firms are located in advanced economies (EU15 countries). In terms of knowledge-seeking, we find that firms from CEEC seem to be primarily attracted by human capital endowment rather than by the R&D intensity of other EU economies.
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