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Vertical FDI? A Host Country Perspective


  • Andreas Waldkirch

    (Oregon State University)


Recent empirical studies of the determinants of multinational activity across countries have found overwhelming support for a horizontal rather than a vertical model of foreign direct investment (FDI). They all use U.S. or other developed country data. This paper, in contrast, uses a previously unexploited industry-level data set on FDI in a relatively skilled-labor and capital scarce country, Mexico, to shed light on the determinants of FDI between largely dissimilar countries. The results indicate considerably more support for the vertical model. The correlation between skill differences and FDI is positive in all industries, but when differences are large, FDI flows into sectors that are intensive in total labor, regardless of skill level. The concentration of multinational activity in (unskilled) labor intensive industries suggests a limited potential for spillover effects.

Suggested Citation

  • Andreas Waldkirch, 2004. "Vertical FDI? A Host Country Perspective," International Trade 0403008, EconWPA.
  • Handle: RePEc:wpa:wuwpit:0403008
    Note: Type of Document - pdf; pages: 35. 35 pages, pdf-file

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    References listed on IDEAS

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    7. Braconier, Henrik & Norbäck, Pehr-Johan & Urban, Dieter, 2002. "Vertical FDI Revisited," Working Paper Series 579, Research Institute of Industrial Economics.
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    13. Stephen Ross Yeaple, 2003. "The Role of Skill Endowments in the Structure of U.S. Outward Foreign Direct Investment," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 85(3), pages 726-734, August.
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    15. Andreas Waldkirch, 2003. "The 'new regionalism' and foreign direct investment: the case of Mexico," The Journal of International Trade & Economic Development, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 12(2), pages 151-184.
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    Cited by:

    1. Frank A.G. den Butter & Raphie Hayat, 0000. "Trade between China and the Netherlands: a Case Study of Globalization," Tinbergen Institute Discussion Papers 08-016/3, Tinbergen Institute.
    2. Jinjarak, Yothin, 2007. "Foreign direct investment and macroeconomic risk," Journal of Comparative Economics, Elsevier, vol. 35(3), pages 509-519, September.
    3. Nunnenkamp, Peter & Bremont, José Eduardo Alatorre, 2007. "FDI in Mexico: An empirical assessment of employment effects," Kiel Working Papers 1328, Kiel Institute for the World Economy (IfW).
    4. Xun, Lei & Awokuse, Titus O., 2005. "The Determinants of US Outgoing FDI in the Food-Processing Sector," 2005 Annual meeting, July 24-27, Providence, RI 19131, American Agricultural Economics Association (New Name 2008: Agricultural and Applied Economics Association).
    5. Helga Kristjánsdóttir, 2005. "What Drives Sector Allocation of Foreign Direct Investment in Iceland?," EPRU Working Paper Series 05-08, Economic Policy Research Unit (EPRU), University of Copenhagen. Department of Economics.

    More about this item


    Foreign Direct Investment; Multinationals; Mexico;

    JEL classification:

    • F21 - International Economics - - International Factor Movements and International Business - - - International Investment; Long-Term Capital Movements
    • F23 - International Economics - - International Factor Movements and International Business - - - Multinational Firms; International Business


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