Essays on foreign direct investment, technology transfer and international trade : ricardian approaches and empirical evidence

Abstract : Ricardo is commonly celebrated for the theoretical achievements -his theory of growth which introduces us to the concept of trap of industrialism and his theory of comparative advantage that introduces us to the idea that technological differences across countries is the basis of international trade. What role Ricardo's theories have given to foreign direct investment (FDI) has remained a less explored issue. Thus, it is certainly relevant to study the implications of FDI and technology transfer for these theories. This thesis puts back the Ricardian growth bottleneck and the Ricardian trade approaches toward FDI and technology transfer at the forefront of analysis, builds and develops new theoretical settings and predictions. Moreover, this thesis provides new empirical applications.This thesis consists of four chapters. Two parts emerge. In the first part, we mainly revisit and reformulate the Japanese economic thought toward outward FDI, within the Ricardian context. We also implement econometric estimation to test the relevance and usefulness of this theoretical approach to outward FDI from catching-up countries. In the second part, we provide theoretical frameworks with empirical applications. We focus on the effects of technological inflows, especially via inward FDI, on the developing receiving countries and we develop new Ricardian approaches with empirical follow-up on the predictions.In chapter 1, we focus on outward FDI as an escape response to home country growth bottlenecks, which represents an important but under-explored phenomenon in the FDI literature. We review the push-factor approaches based on the pressure effect of the “Ricardian bottlenecks” to explain outward FDI. We reconsider Ozawa's macroeconomic theory of outward FDI, extend it and argue for a widespread applicability of FDI aimed at overcoming generalized “Ricardian bottlenecks”, especially, nowadays, natural resource-scarcity and the insatiable quest for energy, industrial raw materials and fuels. Our empirical findings confirm that outward FDI from emerging countries and transition economies (catching-up countries) acts as an escape response from “Ricardian bottlenecks” and strengthen the reasonableness, the usefulness and the empirical robustness of Ozawa's macroeconomic theory of FDI.In chapter 2, we reformulate Kojima's correspondence principle within Ricardian setting and point out that OFDI originating from the comparatively disadvantaged industry in the developed country and going to the comparatively advantaged industry in the developing country should follow the direction of absolute profit rates which is a reflection of the comparative advantage patterns.In chapter 3, we mainly focus, in the first section, on the welfare effect of North-South technology transfer within Ricardian setting. We single out the respective role of the relative size of both countries, the efficiency of the technology which is transferred, and the elasticity of substitution between the goods which are produced. In the second section of chapter 3, we explore what are the consequences of free technology transfer, licensing and FDI on the North-South welfare. We also provide an empirical analysis of the effect of licensing and foreign presence on the developing countries' terms of trade. We find that inward FDI and royalties' payment deteriorate the terms of trade of the developing and emerging countries.In chapter 4, we combine an extended continuum Ricardian trade setting which rank sophistication of exports by their technology intensity with the new advanced wave of empirical literature on export sophistication. Using data from the developing and emerging countries, we test the core theoretical prediction that foreign involvement and export penetration facilitate technological progress and upgrades export sophistication of a country by leading it to expand the range of goods that it produces toward sectors with rising productivity. In our next step, we bring the debate on the deterioration of the developing countries' terms of trade back into the limelight. Importantly, we show that despite the increase in their export sophistication, the developing countries continue to face terms of trade deterioration.
Document type :
Complete list of metadatas
Contributor : Abes Star <>
Submitted on : Wednesday, May 11, 2011 - 3:24:16 PM
Last modification on : Wednesday, September 4, 2019 - 1:52:12 PM
Long-term archiving on : Friday, August 12, 2011 - 2:52:51 AM


Version validated by the jury (STAR)


  • HAL Id : tel-00592187, version 1



Mohamed Saadi. Essays on foreign direct investment, technology transfer and international trade : ricardian approaches and empirical evidence. Economics and Finance. Université Paris-Est, 2010. English. ⟨NNT : 2010PEST3011⟩. ⟨tel-00592187⟩



Record views


Files downloads