China’s BRI and industrial parks in Southeast Asia - Investigating patterns of FDI and their potential impacts through a novel database


Research of China’s Belt and Road Initiative has not yet provided a systematic analysis of how much of its investments have been channelled through industrial parks, mostly because of the lack of data. This talk is about a research project that tries to address this gap by building a novel dataset of industrial parks in Southeast Asia. The dataset was merged with a project-level FDI database to examine how much of post-BRI Chinese investments are connected to old and new industrial parks. Results show that newly established parks under the BRI have attracted a considerable amount of manufacturing investments, providing partial evidence that the Chinese government is exporting a state-led model of industrial development that has been successful domestically. Yet, there are also a number of smaller parks that after being announced have not led to any FDI realization. The talk will conclude by providing possible future application of this database to the study of environmental and social impacts connected to these parks.

About the Speaker

Angela Tritto is an Adjunct Assistant Professor at the Division of Public Policy and a Postdoctoral Fellow jointly appointed by the Institute of Emerging Market Studies and by the Division of Social Science.  She is currently working on three interrelated research projects on the Belt and Road Initiative in Southeast Asia.  


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