Global FDI flows and greenfield investment have declined on average with 15% over 2017 according to UNCTAD and FDI Intelligence. Although trade flows are still stable, we may see similar downward trends due to increased protectionist (trade) policies that many countries are adopting.
Traditionally FDI and trade is driven by multinational corporations and nation-states as they have been the main channels for globalization over the last two decades in which we have seen the rise of many emerging countries on the global economic landscape. However, with increased isolationist policies, geopolitical tensions, and a more cultural backlash against globalization we may see a tendency towards de-globalization? On the other hand we have seen the rise of technological developments that may spur further globalization and interconnectedness, or in other words, the intensity of globalization may even increase. Some of these developments are: Industry 4.0 (including AI, Robotics, Big Data, Blockchain, etc.), smart cities, increased awareness of sustainable economic practices and renewables, SMEs & startups but with greater global presence, etc.
Technological innovations such as automation are dramatically changing the nature of industries as well as the business models of investors. This has significant implications for countries seeking to attract FDI, from developing countries that are striving to create employment and move up the value chain; to advanced economies that are trying to achieve and maintain technological leadership.
Digital Globalization has enforced policy makers to rethink strategies to make the investment climate flexible and attractive to promote large share of investment flows within their economy. These investments provide a conducive environment for economies to grow, innovate and create new employment opportunities. This in turn leads to transfer of technology and skill labor development.
Foreign Direct Investment in sustainable development has been gaining major traction all over the world. The sustainable development goals were established by the United Nations and was adopted by 193 countries in September 2015. The 17 sustainable development goals can only be achieved when governments, multinationals, investors, startup and SMEs work to reinvent their current business models and have SDGs as one of the key factors for measuring success.
The 9th Edition of Annual Investment Meeting 2019 themed “Mapping the Future of FDI: Enriching World Economies through Digital Globalization” will discuss on the path leading to creating more vibrant and inclusive economy, keeping in view the sustainable development goals. Exploring the possible avenues where technology can better help facilitate the SDGs and further grow economies with the right policies and governance.