This paper analyzes the available literature on export spillovers from foreign direct investment (FDI) and their effects on domestic firms’ export activities. The purpose of this paper is to advance our knowledge of whether export spillovers from FDI exist, and if so if they differ according to the institutional context of the targeted markets (developed vs emerging markets).
Drawing from the pioneering work of Aitken et al. (1997), the authors develop a meta-analysis using a selection of 73 studies for the period 1997–2018, including a wide range of developed and emerging markets.
The meta-analysis confirms a high probability of finding positive effects when studying the different types of spillovers. The authors also show that the type of export spillover depends on the institutional context. Spillovers drive a complementary effect which generates more direct commercial links between domestic firms and foreign multinationals for advanced economies, whereas for emerging markets the nature of the spillover generates a competition/imitation effect that pressures domestic firms to be better inserted into foreign markets. In emerging markets, local governments play a fundamental role in accompanying the local industry, not only with investments in infrastructure and training of human capital but also in the configuration of an institutional environment that favors this type of indirect linkages. In developed countries, two business strategies are particularly important as catalytic axes of competitive upgrading at the international level: cooperation agreements between domestic and foreign firms and integration. These processes of concentration are necessary to compete globally, and therefore, governments should promote this type of strategies.
The study offers an original classification of the different types of spillovers based on the different channels through which MNE help local firms to improve their export performance and shows which specific spillover is associated with the different level of country development. These results have important implications in terms of theory development and managerial and policy implications.
The authors are grateful for the financial support received from the Ministry of Economy, Industry and Competitiveness (ECO201785456R), the Valencian Government (GV/2017/155) and the University of Antioquia.
Villar, C., Mesa, R. and Plà Barber, J. (2019), "A meta-analysis of export spillovers from FDI: advanced vs emerging markets", International Journal of Emerging Markets, Vol. ahead-of-print No. ahead-of-print. https://doi.org/10.1108/IJOEM-07-2019-0526Download as .RIS
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