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Do institutions matter for FDI spillovers ? the implications of China's"special characteristics"

  • Du, Luosha
  • Harrison, Ann
  • Jefferson, Gary

The authors investigate how institutions affect productivity spillovers from foreign direct investment (FDI) to China's domestic industrial enterprises during 1998-2007. They examine three institutional features that comprise aspects of China's"special characteristics": (1) the different sources of FDI, where FDI is nearly evenly divided between mostly Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) countries and Hong Kong (SAR of China), Taiwan (China), and Macau (SAR of China); (2) China's heterogeneous ownership structure, involving state- (SOEs) and non-state owned (non-SOEs) enterprises, firms with foreign equity participation, and non-SOE, domestic firms; and (3) industrial promotion via tariffs or through tax holidays to foreign direct investment. The authors also explore how productivity spillovers from FDI changed with China's entry into the WTO in late 2001. They find robust positive and significant spillovers to domestic firms via backward linkages (the contacts between foreign buyers and local suppliers). The results suggest varied success with industrial promotion policies. Final goods tariffs as well as input tariffs are negatively associated with firm-level productivity. However, they find that productivity spillovers were higher from foreign firms that paid less than the statutory corporate tax rate.

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Paper provided by The World Bank in its series Policy Research Working Paper Series with number 5757.

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Date of creation: 01 Aug 2011
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Handle: RePEc:wbk:wbrwps:5757
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  1. Aitken, Brian & Harrison, Ann & Lipsey, Robert E., 1996. "Wages and foreign ownership A comparative study of Mexico, Venezuela, and the United States," Journal of International Economics, Elsevier, vol. 40(3-4), pages 345-371, May.
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  10. repec:cup:cbooks:9780521514521 is not listed on IDEAS
  11. Haddad, Mona & Harrison, Ann, 1993. "Are there positive spillovers from direct foreign investment? : Evidence from panel data for Morocco," Journal of Development Economics, Elsevier, vol. 42(1), pages 51-74, October.
  12. Borensztein, E. & De Gregorio, J. & Lee, J-W., 1998. "How does foreign direct investment affect economic growth?1," Journal of International Economics, Elsevier, vol. 45(1), pages 115-135, June.
  13. Brecher, Richard A. & Diaz Alejandro, Carlos F., 1977. "Tariffs, foreign capital and immiserizing growth," Journal of International Economics, Elsevier, vol. 7(4), pages 317-322, November.
  14. Nathan Nunn & Daniel Trefler, 2006. "Putting the Lid on Lobbying: Tariff Structure and Long-Term Growth when Protection is for Sale," NBER Working Papers 12164, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  15. Blalock, Garrick & Gertler, Paul J., 2008. "Welfare gains from Foreign Direct Investment through technology transfer to local suppliers," Journal of International Economics, Elsevier, vol. 74(2), pages 402-421, March.
  16. Harrison, Ann & Rodríguez-Clare, Andrés, 2010. "Trade, Foreign Investment, and Industrial Policy for Developing Countries," Handbook of Development Economics, Elsevier.
  17. Lin, Ping & Liu, Zhuomin & Zhang, Yifan, 2009. "Do Chinese domestic firms benefit from FDI inflow?: Evidence of horizontal and vertical spillovers," China Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 20(4), pages 677-691, December.
  18. 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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