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Equal Treatment for Outward Investors

NEW YORK – During the past decade, emerging economies have become important players in the global foreign-direct-investment market. Indeed, the share of world FDI outflows of the more than 30,000 multinational enterprises (MNEs) headquartered in emerging markets rose from roughly 5% in 1990 to more than one-quarter today. These new players – many of which are state-owned enterprises (SOEs) and sovereign-wealth funds (SWFs) – have become serious competitors for long-established MNEs in many sectors.

Among developed countries, these investors’ arrival has inspired concerns that have been pursued by the OECD, in the Trans-Pacific Partnership negotiations, and at the national level. In particular, there are two sources of anxiety.