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Attracting Chinese FDI in Africa: the role of natural resources, market size and institutional quality

Shan, S.; Lin, Z.; Li, Y.; Zeng, Y.

Attracting Chinese FDI in Africa: the role of natural resources, market size and institutional quality Thumbnail


S. Shan

Y. Li

Y. Zeng


Purpose – The study aims to examine the effect of natural resources, market size and five major institutional factors (voice and accountability; political stability and absence of violence; regulatory quality; rule of law; and control of corruption) on Chinese FDI in Africa. Design/methodology/approach – This study uses regression analysis on panel data across 22 countries for the period from 2008 to 2014. Findings – Natural resources did not play a significant role in attracting Chinese investments, but market size did. Among the institutional factors, only voice and accountability had a significant and positive effect on attracting Chinese FDI; the effects of rule of law and control of corruption were not significant; and political stability and regulatory quality had a significant and negative effect. Research limitations/implications – Chinese investment in Africa is only a recent phenomenon, and is growing rapidly, further studies should examine factors that are unique to the context such as bilateral political link. Practical implications – African countries that are struggling with improving their poor institutional quality in the short term could effectively attract Chinese investment by reducing investor psychic distance, e.g. establishing a closer political link with China. Nevertheless, in the long term measures of improving institutional quality are important. Originality/value – This study reveals for the first time that what attracts Chinese investment is market size rather than natural resources and different institutional factors of an African country show varying effects on attracting Chinese FDI.

Journal Article Type Article
Acceptance Date Nov 20, 2017
Online Publication Date Jan 26, 2018
Publication Date May 8, 2018
Deposit Date Jan 13, 2018
Publicly Available Date Jan 15, 2018
Journal critical perspectives on international business
Print ISSN 1742-2043
Publisher Emerald
Peer Reviewed Peer Reviewed
Volume 14
Issue 2/3
Pages 139-153
Keywords Foreign Direct Investment, determinant, China, Africa, natural resources, country risk, cross -country panel data, location
Public URL


Accepted Journal Article (656 Kb)

Copyright Statement
This article is © Emerald Group Publishing and permission has been granted for this version to appear here Emerald does not grant permission for this article to be further copied/distributed or hosted elsewhere without the express permission from Emerald Group Publishing Limited

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