Developing Global Champions: Why National Oil Companies Expand Abroad

Economics and Politics, Forthcoming

80 Pages Posted: 31 Jul 2019

Date Written: March 25, 2019


National oil companies (NOCs) have invested hundreds of billions of dollars in foreign oil and gas assets. Why have some governments increased their NOC outward investments, while others have not? I argue that domestic structures can influence a government's calculus that potential benefits, such as added revenues and fuel supply, outweigh potential costs, such as information asymmetries and inefficiencies associated with NOCs. Nationally, partisan competition limits democratic tolerance for failures by NOCs. Bureaucratically, overlapping authority in energy policy undermines coherent NOC governance. Based on investments by NOCs hailing from 79 countries, 2000-2013, I find robust evidence for the national hypothesis.

Keywords: energy governance, energy security, foreign direct investment, national oil companies, state capitalism, state-owned enterprises

Suggested Citation

Cheon, Andrew, Developing Global Champions: Why National Oil Companies Expand Abroad (March 25, 2019). Economics and Politics, Forthcoming, Available at SSRN:

Andrew Cheon (Contact Author)

Johns Hopkins SAIS ( email )

1717 Massachusetts Avenue, NW
Washington, DC 20036
United States

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