سرمایه گذاری مستقیم خارجی ژاپن و بحران مالی آسیا
|کد مقاله||سال انتشار||تعداد صفحات مقاله انگلیسی||ترجمه فارسی|
|12050||2001||18 صفحه PDF||سفارش دهید|
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Publisher : Elsevier - Science Direct (الزویر - ساینس دایرکت)
Journal : Geoforum,, Volume 32, Issue 1, February 2001, Pages 103-120
This paper examines the extent to which the Asian currency crisis of 1997–1998 impacted upon the behaviour of Japanese foreign direct investment (FDI) in the manufacturing sector. Much literature has claimed that transnational corporations (TNCs) are unlikely to be firmly embedded in the host countries where they operate. If this is the case, then Japanese firms in Asia might have exhibited a high degree of disinvestment or plant closure and transfer of operations to other countries following the onset of the financial crisis. Although the events surrounding the Asian crisis and subsequent recovery are still unfolding, FDI data, surveys of Japanese firms, and initial reactions by Toyota Motor Corporation and Matsushita Electric Industrial were reviewed to examine this proposition. In general, the evidence suggests that Japanese TNCs have not fled Asia bur rather they responded in the following manner. First, flows of Japanese FDI into Asia overall held steady throughout fiscal year 1997–1998, although it was set to decline thereafter, at least for the short term. Second, at the level of individual corporations, there is some evidence to show that major firms have maintained their operations, and that they have shifted to an export-orientation so as to earn income from their Asian production in overseas currencies. Third, the survey evidence points to a long-term commitment to Asia by Japanese transnationals.
The wild geese fall successively, following Japan – (`Senryu', short, humorous Japanese poem) Prior to 1997, Asian economies were like wild geese (ganko keitai), following a lead wild goose Japan flying high in the sky and forming successive waves of development – or so the rhetoric went ( Yamazawa, 1990). According to this view, Japanese firms transferred their future expectations of growth to Asia, especially as economies in the West wavered in the early part of the last decade ( Edgington and Hayter, 2000). Throughout the 1990s Japanese companies invested heavily in Asia, and a wide array of literature monitored this expansion (see for example, Doner, 1991; Tokunaga, 1992; Doherty, 1994; Ernst, 1994; Chen and Drysdale, 1995; Nomura Research Institute, 1995; Sing, 1995; Hatch and Yamamura, 1996; Itagaki, 1997; Milelli, 1997). Led by the major corporations in the automobile and electronics industries (including Toyota, Honda, Mitsubishi and Matsushita), corporate Japan established a massive presence in Asia ( Lindblad, 1998). For instance, Matsushita Electric Industrial set up 15 affiliates in Malaysia that reputedly accounted for 4% of the country's exports. A fifth of Malaysia's new manufacturing jobs in the 1990s were at Japanese companies ( The Economist, 1997). By the middle of the decade Japanese firms had invested about $5.7 billion in factories or property developments in Thailand, Malaysia, Indonesia and the Philippines, which represented just over a third of all foreign direct investment in the region as a whole, and far more in Thailand ( Business Week, 1995). Japanese transnational corporations (TNCs) have similarly dominated foreign direct investment (FDI) in South Korea, and also China, the biggest target for FDI in the 1990s ( Thompson, 1997). However, starting with the Thai baht depreciation in July 1997, Southeast Asian economies, followed by South Korea, were hard hit by currency and stock market instability, and the consequent stagnation of their economies. By 1998, nearly every country in the region was affected (Gill, 1998; Montes, 1998). The Asian crisis created considerable difficulties for Japanese TNCs, to a greater degree than for American and European counterparts, because of the extent of their investments in the region and the importance of these investments to operations in Japan, especially as export markets (see Strange, 1998; Kwan, 1998). Indeed, a survey carried out by the Japanese Exim-Im Bank during 1998 found that 80% of firms with affiliates in Southeast Asia responded that these received negative impacts from the Asian crisis (Tejima, 1998). Conversely, Japanese TNCs' reactions to the turmoil of 1997–1998 were seen as crucial to the economic health of East and Southeast Asia, especially in Thailand, Indonesia, the Philippines and South Korea. These countries were understandably anxious that Japanese banks and manufacturers did not react to the region's economic disorder by either investing or lending less. If Japanese FDI flows were resilient in the face of the crisis, so it was argued, then they could assist the countries involved in the process of economic recovery (The Economist, 1997, UNCRD, 1998). This paper addresses the question of corporate resilience by examining how Japanese manufacturing TNCs with operations in Asia responded to the region's financial crisis. Our goals are to identify these responses, especially in terms of decisions about production levels, product mix, local linkages, market orientation and investment plans, and to assess implications for future long-run corporate strategies in the region. Empirically, the paper draws from recent official data on Japanese FDI, person to person interviews with senior managers of Japanese companies, and case studies of corporate strategies in the auto assembly and consumer electronics sectors. The paper identifies responses that were undertaken in the 18 months following the onset of the financial crisis in July 1997, and discusses plans and expectations of Japanese companies as expressed in 1999. The conceptual point of departure for the paper is provided by the debate over the embeddedness (or otherwise) of FDI in host economies (Dicken et al., 1994). Since our analysis focussed on Japanese FDI in Asia, we implicitly link this debate to the flying geese literature (Edgington and Hayter, 2000). As Dicken et al. note, there are strong suggestions in the literature that FDI is relatively footloose and not well connected to local economies. Thus, ideas about location flexibility, the ephemerality of contemporary capitalism, the new international division of labour, reduced national sovereignty, as well as the dependency literature, have conjured up the notion of highly mobile capital in which corporate interest has little overlap with local interest (Bluestone and Harrison, 1982; Shapiro, 1983). Still, Dicken et al. (1994) offer a contrasting view to this model of `placeless' TNCs that have no allegiance to country, region or local community. In their view, the rise of flexible production, the emergence of local and regional `networks' as well as entrepreneurial firms, have all led to a re-evaluation of this stereotypical model (ibid.). Cox (1997a) also questions the general assumptions of `hyper-mobile capital', and argues for more empirical studies of just how global-local tensions play out in a complex world economy. From this perspective: `The real question to ask of (transnational corporations) is not why they are always threatening to up and leave a country if things seem to go bad for them there, but why the vast majority of them fail to leave and continue to stay put in their home base and (other) major centres of investment? TNCs are very reluctant to uproot themselves because they get entrenched in specific national markets, and with local suppliers and dealers'(Hirst and Thompson, 1992, cited in Cox, 1997b, p. 4). Hirst and Thompson's view of embeddedness is, however, first and foremost rooted in the home countries of TNCs. In host countries, the nature and extent of embeddedness is more problematic and inevitably contingent on circumstances. In this regard, as the flying geese model predicts, Japanese FDI in Asia for the last 20 years or so has represented a growing commitment to the region as a whole. It is a commitment that has helped to establish Asia-Pacific as a rival `triad' economy and as a complement to the North American and European metropoles. The financial crisis of 1997, nevertheless, threw this commitment into turmoil. Consequently, we explore the short- and long-term implications of this crisis for the strategies of Japanese TNCs. Did this `shock' and subsequent social turmoil in the region necessitate withdrawal from local involvement or even a shift to greener pastures? Or did the shock encourage more lasting, locally integrated adaptations? The first section of the paper examines the various reasons for the surge of Japanese manufacturing FDI into Asia in the fifteen years or so leading up to the crisis to provide a framework for assessing these questions.
نتیجه گیری انگلیسی
The Asian economic crisis that started in 1997 was basically a financial phenomenon, but one that had deep-seated implications for Japanese manufacturing TNCs. The analysis of aggregate investment trends, surveys of corporate strategies, and case studies of individual companies indicated that the impact of the crisis on Japanese FDI has been multi-faceted. Thus, besides an initial increase of FDI into the region during fiscal year 1997, later results for fiscal year 1998 indicated a substantial drop in expected flows of inward direct investment to the region, in part due to the deteriorating economic situation in Japan itself.5 Nonetheless, despite the sudden drop in Japanese approved FDI during fiscal year 1998 this was ostensibly less than the damage sustained in sales and profit performance. In addition, the effects of the crisis certainly varied by host country and by industry. Yet the FDI analysis and more detailed case studies suggested that on the whole Japanese investors in the region avoided speculative M & A activity and that existing firms had a remarkable resilience to the crisis. Looking ahead, beyond the events of 1997–1998, there are a number of indications that Japanese manufacturers in general expect the long-term benefits of expanding in the region to outweigh the short-term risks indicated in Table 2, and that overall direct investment could return to pre-1997 levels within 5 years or so. Thus, in a 1998 UNCTAD/ICC survey, two-thirds of Japanese TNCs stated that their investment plans in the region remained unchanged, and almost one-fifth of them even intended to increase their investments despite the crisis (UNCTAD, 1998). The 1998 Japanese Ex-Im Bank survey mentioned earlier also sought to measure medium to long-term investment intentions in Asia. It found that between 44% (for firms in Indonesia) and 75% (Philippines) of Japanese TNCs in countries affected by the crisis expected to maintain or increase their FDI in the next one-to-three years. Declines were expected to be most pronounced in Indonesia (56%) and Thailand (53%) (see Fig. 3). But outside the next 3–5 years, the survey recorded that attitudes became even more positive over the prospects for sales and profits, and for FDI to return to 1997 levels, even among the most severely damaged countries such as Thailand, Indonesia and South Korea (Tejima, 1998). Beyond these optimistic evaluations a more sober assessment of Japanese FDI prospects in Asia would no doubt view depend upon a variety of factors. These include the speed of economic recovery, exchange-rate developments, and the success of switching from production for local markets to exports as well as from foreign sourcing to local sourcing of inputs (see Nishiyama and Noda, 1999). In general, these findings – especially the two case studies – support the views expressed by Cox, 1997a and Cox, 1997b, Dicken et al. (1994) and Hirst and Thompson (1992) concerning the embeddedness of TNCs in host countries and the relative stability of global production systems. The results also reflect the fact that Asia remains an attractive region, and one to which Japanese TNCs appeared committed. While some manufacturing firms will undoubtedly face a downturn in sales, few cases of dis-investment were noted in this study and Japanese managers in the automobile and electronics industries seemed responsive to changing environments and the opportunity to turn recent events to their advantage. Even so, the degree to which Japanese FDI is embedded in Asia, and the extent to which technology will be transferred, remains an issue. A final reflection is that the overall transnationalization of Japanese manufacturers has remained weak by the standards of other developed countries. Hence, immediately before the Asian crisis outward FDI stock (in 1996) was low as a percentage of GDP (about 10%), not only compared with most other developed countries but also with Asian countries. At that time, FDI outflows as a percentage of gross fixed capital formation was lower in Japan than in even countries such as Spain and Portugal (UNCTAD, 1998). When compared with the US and Germany, both of which begun their global operations earlier, Japan's ratio of overseas production is less than half (Ministry of International Trade and Industry, 1998). Accordingly, Japanese companies are likely to continue to establish international production systems in order to keep up with global competition. It is probable that they will meet this need by building on their existing foundations in Asia. This should not be surprising as FDI flows involve not only financial capital but also technological, managerial and intellectual capital that jointly represents a stock of assets for the production of goods and services (UNCTAD, 1999). Japanese TNCs typically forge long-term relationships at the level of production between headquaters and their foreign affiliates, reflecting the investor's lasting interest in these affiliates and control over them. Since FDI is mainly a real investment in firms, its mobility is significantly limited by such factors as physical assets, networks of suppliers, the local infrastructure, human capital and the institutional environment. In other words, Japanese firms have become embedded in Asia and so their FDI stocks are generally not so footloose as portfolio investments.