Can active investment promotion efforts attract FDI towards areas and sectors that would not otherwise be targeted? This paper leverages an ad hoc survey on national and sub-national Investment Promotion Agencies (IPAs) in Europe and applies state-of-the-art policy evaluation methods to estimate the impact of IPAs on FDI attraction. The results show that FDI responds to IPAs even in advanced economies. Sub-national IPAs, operating in closer proximity to investors' operations, attract FDI in particular towards less developed areas where market and institutional failures are stronger. IPAs influence FDI over and above other policies targeting the general economic improvement of the host economies. Impacts are concentrated in knowledge-intensive sectors where collaborative systemic conditions are more relevant. IPAs work best for less experienced companies - ‘occasional’ investors - more likely to suffer from institutional failures. Finally, IPAs are equally effective in attracting companies from both outside and inside the EU Single Market even if the latter are less likely to suffer from regulatory or information asymmetries. Overall, this evidence sheds new light on the role of sub-national IPAs as local ‘institutional plumbers’ in support of foreign investors and their operations.

FDI inflows in Europe: Does investment promotion work?

Di Cataldo M.;
2021-01-01

Abstract

Can active investment promotion efforts attract FDI towards areas and sectors that would not otherwise be targeted? This paper leverages an ad hoc survey on national and sub-national Investment Promotion Agencies (IPAs) in Europe and applies state-of-the-art policy evaluation methods to estimate the impact of IPAs on FDI attraction. The results show that FDI responds to IPAs even in advanced economies. Sub-national IPAs, operating in closer proximity to investors' operations, attract FDI in particular towards less developed areas where market and institutional failures are stronger. IPAs influence FDI over and above other policies targeting the general economic improvement of the host economies. Impacts are concentrated in knowledge-intensive sectors where collaborative systemic conditions are more relevant. IPAs work best for less experienced companies - ‘occasional’ investors - more likely to suffer from institutional failures. Finally, IPAs are equally effective in attracting companies from both outside and inside the EU Single Market even if the latter are less likely to suffer from regulatory or information asymmetries. Overall, this evidence sheds new light on the role of sub-national IPAs as local ‘institutional plumbers’ in support of foreign investors and their operations.
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Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: https://hdl.handle.net/10278/3741986
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