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Productivity and Labour Demand Effects of Inward and Outward FDI on UK Industry

  • Nigel Driffield
  • James Love
  • Karl Taylor

    ()

    (Department of Economics, The University of Sheffield)

We relate the technological and factor price determinants of inward and outward FDI to its potential productivity and labour market effects on both host and home economies. This allows us to distinguish clearly between technology sourcing and technology exploiting FDI, and to identify FDI which is linked to labour cost differentials. We then empirically examine the effects of different types of FDI into and out of the United Kingdom on domestic (i.e. UK) productivity and on the demand for skilled and unskilled labour at the industry level. Inward investment into the UK comes overwhelmingly from sectors and countries which have a technological advantage over the corresponding UK sector. Outward FDI shows a quite different pattern, dominated by investment into foreign sectors which have lower unit labour costs than the UK. We find that different types of FDI have markedly different productivity and labour demand effects, which may in part explain the lack of consensus in the empirical literature on the effects of FDI. Our results also highlight the difficulty for policy makers of simultaneously improving employment and domestic productivity through FDI.

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Paper provided by The University of Sheffield, Department of Economics in its series Working Papers with number 2008001.

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Length: 46 pages
Date of creation: Jan 2008
Date of revision: Jan 2008
Handle: RePEc:shf:wpaper:2008001
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  1. Basu, Susanto & Fernald, John G., 1995. "Are apparent productive spillovers a figment of specification error?," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 36(1), pages 165-188, August.
  2. Blundell, R. & Bond, S., 1995. "Initial Conditions and Moment Restrictions in Dynamic Panel Data Models," Economics Papers 104, Economics Group, Nuffield College, University of Oxford.
  3. E. Berman & J. Bound & S. Machin, 1997. "Implications of skill-biased technological change: international evidence," LSE Research Online Documents on Economics 20314, London School of Economics and Political Science, LSE Library.
  4. Dunning, John H, 1979. "Explaining Changing Patterns of International Production: In Defence of the Eclectic Theory," Oxford Bulletin of Economics and Statistics, Department of Economics, University of Oxford, vol. 41(4), pages 269-95, November.
  5. Jürgen Bitzer & Holger Görg, 2005. "The impact of FDI on industry performance," International Trade 0505003, EconWPA.
  6. Barrell, Ray & Pain, Nigel, 1999. "Domestic institutions, agglomerations and foreign direct investment in Europe," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 43(4-6), pages 925-934, April.
  7. Blomström, Magnus & Kokko, Ari, 1996. "Multinational Corporations and Spillovers," SSE/EFI Working Paper Series in Economics and Finance 99, Stockholm School of Economics.
  8. Barrell, Ray & Pain, Nigel, 1996. "An Econometric Analysis of U.S. Foreign Direct Investment," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 78(2), pages 200-207, May.
  9. Barrell, Ray & Pain, Nigel, 1997. "Foreign Direct Investment, Technological Change, and Economic Growth within Europe," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 107(445), pages 1770-86, November.
  10. Driffield, Nigel & Taylor, Karl, 2000. "FDI and the Labour Market: A Review of the Evidence and Policy Implications," Oxford Review of Economic Policy, Oxford University Press, vol. 16(3), pages 90-103, Autumn.
  11. John H Dunning, 1998. "Location and the Multinational Enterprise: A Neglected Factor?," Journal of International Business Studies, Palgrave Macmillan, vol. 29(1), pages 45-66, March.
  12. Nigel Driffield & James H. Love, 2003. "Foreign Direct Investment, Technology Sourcing and Reverse Spillovers," Manchester School, University of Manchester, vol. 71(6), pages 659-672, December.
  13. Nigel Driffield & James H. Love, 2006. "Does The Motivation for Foreign Direct Investment Affect Productivity Spillovers to the Domestic Sector?," Applied Economics Quarterly (formerly: Konjunkturpolitik), Duncker & Humblot, Berlin, vol. 52(1), pages 3-27.
  14. Driffield, Nigel, 2001. "The Impact of Domestic Productivity of Inward Investment in the UK," Manchester School, University of Manchester, vol. 69(1), pages 103-19, January.
  15. Ann E. Harrison & Brian J. Aitken, 1999. "Do Domestic Firms Benefit from Direct Foreign Investment? Evidence from Venezuela," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 89(3), pages 605-618, June.
  16. Blomstrom, Magnus, 1986. "Foreign Investment and Productive Efficiency: The Case of Mexico," Journal of Industrial Economics, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 35(1), pages 97-110, September.
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