Outward FDI by Singapore: A Different Animal?
Singapore’s outward FDI is peculiar in important respects, even though it shares some characteristics with FDI undertaken by traditional investor countries. The focus of FDI in the manufacturing sector on lower-income Asian host countries suggests that the motivations and trade repercussions of Singapore's FDI differ from those of FDI undertaken by major industrialized countries. We apply basic gravity models in order to investigate the relationship between Singapore’s outward FDI and trade and, thereby, to assess the economic justification of concerns that outward FDI has adverse labour market implications. We do not find that Singapore's FDI has replaced exports. Yet, balance-of-payments effects differ considerably across manufacturing industries.