The Impact of Foreign Firms on Industrial Productivity: A Bayesian-model averaging approach

Author Name TANAKA Kiyoyasu  (Institute of Developing Economies, JETRO)
Creation Date/NO. January 2015 15-E-009
Research Project Competitiveness of Japanese Firms: Causes and Effects of the Productivity Dynamics
Download / Links


Inward foreign direct investment affects industrial productivity in a host country through a wide range of channels as the presence of foreign firms is heterogeneous across industries, regions, and their characteristics such as entry mode and nationality. Because a wide variety of potential variables pose serious model uncertainty, I adopt a Bayesian-model averaging (BMA) approach to estimate the impact of foreign firms on industry- and prefecture-level productivity in Japan. I find that the foreign presence may contribute to industrial efficiency directly through their above-average productivity and indirectly through positive spillovers in intra-industry and local backward linkages. These positive impacts are likely to occur as a result of the foreign firms being owned by North American and European investors and the foreign firms making joint venture and merger and acquisition (M&A) investments to enter the Japanese market. By contrast, the foreign presence in distant downstream sectors and local upstream sectors may have negative impacts.