Determinants of the Profitability of Japanese Manufacturing Affiliates in China and Other Regions: Does Localisation of Procurement, Sales and Management Matter?
33 Pages Posted: 18 Apr 2011
Does localisation of procurements, sales and management contribute to the profitability of overseas affiliates? This study examines this question by analysing the performance of Japanese multinationals manufacturing affiliates in China using an affiliate-level dataset for the period from 1989 to 2002 collected by the Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry. We find that even though foreign multinationals often seem to enter China for the local market potential, affiliates with a higher local sales ratio tend to be less profitable a pattern that is conspicuously different from that observed for Japanese affiliates in other regions such as the USA or the ASEAN4, where local sales orientation has a positive impact on profitability. On the other hand, we find that Japanese affiliates profitability was positively associated with their local procurement ratio. Using the coefficients of the profit function estimated from data on all Japanese manufacturing affiliates around the world, we calculate the effect of local sales and procurements on profitability by country, controlling for the level of GDP and per capita GDP. In the case of China, the localisation effects are positive following the countrys accession to the WTO, suggesting that both local procurement and sales expansion contribute to higher profitability in China.
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