European Union foreign direct investment yearbook 2005
Foreign direct investment acquires increasing importance as an indicator of the international economic climate. This publication covers data from 1999-2003 (Data for 1998-2002 refer to the activity
breakdown). Outward flows from the European Union towards extra-EU partners fell from EUR 320 bn in 1999 to EUR 126 bn in 2003. During the same period, foreign investments into the EU markets dropped by 8% from EUR 123 bn in 1999 to EUR 113 bn in 2003. The data of this publication were extracted in June 2005.
FDI plays a key role in the globalisation process as an important element of international relations and their development. Supplementing trade, FDI creates more direct and deeper links between economies. It is a source of extra capital, encourages efficient production, stimulates technology transfer and fosters the exchange of managerial know-how. It is thus believed to improve the productivity of business and to make economies more competitive.
In the European Union direct investment pocketbook 2005, Eurostat presents and analyses harmonised statistics on FDI flows, stocks and income for the EU as a whole. Faced with increasing globalisation of economic activities, public authorities and policymakers need new statistics. On the basis of the General Agreement on Trade in services (GATS), Eurostat, in conjunction with the OECD, has started the compilation of foreign affiliate statistics (FATS) on employment, turnover, imports and exports of foreign affiliates. These data, now available for some Member States only, help quantify some of the economic consequences of direct investments and will therefore, together with FDI data, provide an invaluable tool to measure the evolution of the globalisation phenomenon.