Finance, Competitiveness, and Innovation in Focus

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The series captures the experience, innovative approaches and solutions for development of the World Bank Group covering financial sector topics of relevance to both the public and private sectors. The series is comprised of short knowledge notes, policy notes, case studies, lessons learned or a combination therein. This series was formerly known as Finance in Focus.

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    Investment Linkages and Incentives: Promoting Technology Transfer and Productivity Spillovers from Foreign Direct Investment
    (World Bank, Washington, DC, 2020-05-01) Sabha, Yassin ; Liu, Yan ; Douw, Wim
    This note seeks to provide an overview of investment incentive policy as a tool for Governments seeking to promote technology transfer and productivity spillovers by multinational enterprises (MNEs) in the host economy to local firms and suppliers. It summarizes international experiences to demonstrate what has worked and what has not worked, as well as the advantages and disadvantages of different investment incentive schemes. Evidence suggests that backward linkages between MNEs and local suppliers are the most important channels for technology and productivity spillovers to local firms (Jordaan et al, 2020). Furthermore, backward linkages offer an important avenue for ambitious local firms to integrate into Global Value Chains (GVCs). However, several market failures and challenges often prevent backward linkages from materializing. Policy makers can use investment incentives and other policy tools to help address these challenges. This note highlights examples of investment incentive schemes used by Governments, as well as their pros and cons.
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    Foreign Direct Investment, Backward Linkages, and Productivity Spillovers: What Governments Can Do to Strengthen Linkages and Their Impact
    (World Bank, Washington, DC, 2020-05-01) Jordaan, Jacob ; Douw, Wim ; Qiang, Christine Zhenwei
    This note provides an up-to-date summary of the academic evidence around the drivers and channels for technology transfer and productivity spillovers by multinational corporations (MNC) operating in host economies. Foreign direct investment (FDI) is a major contributor to development. Besides the direct benefits FDI brings in terms of increased capital, employment and exports, the presence and operations of MNCs can also help improve the productivity of local firms through backward linkages and offer an important channel for the integration of local firms into global value chains (GVC). However, several market failures exist that get in the way of these linkages and spillovers fully materializing. This note highlights the main challenges as well as some policy recommendations for host economy Governments to consider.
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    Competitive Fruit and Vegetable Products in Albania
    (World Bank, Washington, DC, 2018-12) World Bank Group
    Albania is heavily dependent on its agricultural sector, which accounts for 20.3 percent of GDP, 49 percent of employment and 8.5 percent of total exports. The fruit and vegetable sector represents 20 percent of Albanian agriculture but contributes 36 percent of its exports and this share is expected to increase. The note posits an idea that as the domestic market for many of these products is saturated, Albanian fruits and vegetables have been gaining ground in the Western Balkans and are well positioned to make headway in the EU-28 market as well. However, Albanian producers face many constraints in meeting the rigid and complex demands of the EU market, constraints that an export strategy focused solely on identifying products for export is unlikely to change. The policy paradigm has shifted to approaches that focus on integrating local industries into global value chains that help facilitate technology transfer and create jobs.