Competitiveness, FDI and Technological Activity in East Asia

Competitiveness, FDI and Technological Activity in East Asia

Edited by Sanjaya Lall and Shujiro Urata

This book addresses this imbalance with new country studies on the interaction between foreign direct investment (FDI) and technological activity in building export competitiveness. The book covers China, Indonesia, Japan, Korea, Malaysia, Philippines, Singapore, Taiwan and Thailand, highlighting different strategic approaches to building capabilities in industrial enterprises. The book also includes a general overview and studies of Japanese multinationals overseas.

Preface and acknowledgements

Edited by Sanjaya Lall and Shujiro Urata

Subjects: asian studies, asian business, asian innovation and technology, business and management, asia business, international business, economics and finance, international business, innovation and technology, asian innovation, technology and ict

Extract

This study on competitiveness, FDI and technological activity in East Asia is the outcome of a research project organized by the World Bank Institute under the Brain Trust Program which is financed by the government of Japan through its Policy and Human Resources Development Trust Fund. The principal objective of the Brain Trust Program is to conduct studies on the Japanese and East Asian development management experience and to disseminate the lessons of this experience to developing and transition countries. The current study is one of a series of such projects undertaken over the past decade. The objective of this study is to examine the degree to which foreign direct investment (FDI) and technological activity have contributed to export competitiveness and economic growth in East Asia. The links between export competitiveness and its main contributory factors, namely FDI and domestic technological effort – which include R&D, learning-bydoing, adaptation and copying – have not yet been fully explored. The ways in which these links are forged differ among countries. Some countries have placed less emphasis on FDI and the presence of transnational companies (TNCs), relying instead on building domestic technological capacity through R&D efforts, adaptation and so on. Some others have depended largely on TNC presence for their technology development and upgrading. These differences in the strategies adopted by countries in their technology development pose two important questions. They are: (i) what are the most effective ways in which technology transfer could take place through FDI...