Foreign investors and national economic policy formation in China : the case of the indigenous innovation Program

Weimer Swader, Larissa



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Dokumentart: Bericht / Forschungsbericht / Abhandlung
Institut: Hertie School of Governance
Schriftenreihe: Working papers // Hertie School of Governance
Bandnummer: 61
Sprache: Englisch
Erstellungsjahr: 2011
Publikationsdatum: 18.01.2013
Originalveröffentlichung: (2011)
SWD-Schlagwörter: China , Auslandsinvestition , Wirtschaftsentwicklung , Wirtschaftspolitik
DDC-Sachgruppe: Politik
BK - Basisklassifikation: 15.79 (China), 85.30 (Investition, Finanzierung), 89.50 (Politische Prozesse: Allgemeines)
Sondersammelgebiete: 3.6 Politik und Friedensforschung

Kurzfassung auf Englisch:

On November 15, 2009, the Chinese government promulgated the “Notification Regarding the Launch of National Indigenous Innovation Product Accreditation Work for 2009” (Notice 618), a new national accreditation program that is part of a bigger national innovation policy scheme. The new directive states that products can be accredited as “indigenous” if their commercial trademarks, patents, copyrights and non-patented technology and knowhow have originated in China. Further, Notice 618 explicitly specifies that “indigenous” products cannot be subject to foreign restrictions; the trademarks used must be registered in China first and cannot be constrained by any related foreign brand. After the accreditation procedure, “indigenous” products are added to a national catalogue that is used for the national government procurement market, i.e. “indigenous” products are given priority in government procurement projects. Notice 618 has attracted great attention from foreign investors in China immediately after its publication since their products would not qualify to obtain an “indigenous” product status. The immediate strong reaction of foreign investors against the implementation of Notice 618 has pressured the Chinese government to reconsider parts of its original indigenous innovation program and to submit a revised version. The content analysis in this paper revealed that changes made in the revised version of Notice 618 were able to be traced to the concerns raised by the foreign actor community as a whole at the meso level. Further, it can be assumed that foreign actors, specifically multinational corporations via their representative organizations, as a group had an impact on the national policy formation process in regard to the implementation of indigenous innovation in China. The findings of the content analysis have two implications for the Gesellschaft fuer Internationale Zusammenarbeit (GIZ). First, the importance of the indigenous innovation program and its serious discussion among foreign actors provides enough information for the GIZ to consider its involvement on the topic. Second, the foreign actors currently contributing to the discussion of the topic are in high demand, i.e. indicating that the GIZ in China could play a potentially crucial role in mediating the concerns regarding the indigenous innovation to influential Chinese state actors. Moreover, GIZ could acquire a position within the cumulative pressure group of meso-level actors. As a major knowledge transfer agent, the GIZ with its research department for “Innovation and Technology” can offer its expertise within the discussion of indigenous innovation in China. Hence, one of the policy recommendations for GIZ is to contribute to the topic at the macro level by providing unbiased and objective advice to its current partners at the Executive summary V NDRC and the Research Office of the State Council. Another policy recommendation presented in this paper relates to the GIZ as an actor with vast experience in project implementation. GIZ could play a major role on the provincial and local level, assisting local governments and firms to implement the changes within the development of the indigenous innovation program.

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