01 September 2012

Comparison of competitive advantage(comprehensive competitiveness) in investing CEE and China

The emerging countries have becoming the main force in current economy, especially BRICs and CEE countries. Everyone is asking a “why” behind this then let’s see it in the following video. But today we are not going to talk about the reason, however something make you a wise investment




Since 1980s, China and most CEE countries regard attracting FDI as an important move and undertaking their system transformation. The German-funded enterprises took pretty huge proportion in both of their FDI. And now this is an article which analyzing the competitive advantage in investing China and CEE countries from the view of German enterprises, both of them have their own advantage. In general, the competitive advantage of China is relative higher than CEE countries, however it also depends on which industry they want to put.

Here now both China and CEE countries are the target of German enterprises for investing, so many German-funded enterprises made a hard choice before they deciding invest between China and CEE area recently, even if there are various document and literature about comparing competitive advantage all over the world, still there is nothing exact criteria which telling us which is relative better, I am writing from my point of view here comparing the two area after collecting the material from different place.

In terms of comprehensive competitiveness:

On the basis of The Eclectic Theory of International Production from J.H Dunning, there are three main factors which affect FDI, monopolistic advantage, internalization advantage and location specific advantage. The market size, economy development and political stability in location specific advantage became the most essential dimensions for attracting investment to the host countries. All of those dimensions are related to a nation’s comprehensive strength. Whether a country with high competitiveness in investment is directly depend on its macroscopic condition which include the quantity and quality of the whole population, national economy and development situation, culture, society…

Compare to CEE countries, China has a huge market with 9.6 million square kilometers and the population around 1.3 billion, however if we put the EU-15 together then measure the territory (around 1.34 million square kilometers) and population (around 1.4 billion), that are the reasons China has kept attracting the foreign investment for a long time among those developing countries. As I know the big market with rapid process in industrialization is an essential factor why some of the German company chose China, it is a huge emerging market which unique enough in the world. While we have to highlight the geographic advantage for CEE countries, this factor can efficiently decrease the operating cost as I mentioned before in the location specific advantage, they possess a kind of geographic advantage which most of the developing countries couldn’t be able to achieve, such as well-educated labor but relative cheap and easier channel to the EU market. I think this is more attractive for American and Japanese investors because of the entry of EU market. We can see it is true that the investment from USA is more than Germany in Poland, I put Poland here because it is regarded as the most attractive country in EU 15 recently. Therefore, it is obvious that the competitiveness of investment was improved after they entered European Union.

Let’s see it from the GDP growth, China has kept an average growth in GDP recent years around 10.6% and became the fastest one worldwide, others couldn’t compete with China even if the growth in CEE countries are increasing as well, the GDP growth leads the change in purchasing power of Chinese citizen and the potential market has been proved by the significant change. But the pity is our GDP per capita is much less than CEE countries, the population and regional difference are still the major problems for China’s economy, as I said before large population can provide huge market and labor however coin has two sides, we couldn’t avoid the weakness as well as opportunities. The GDP per capita in CEE countries is 18394 US dollars in average, much higher than China. It seems CEE countries have entered the mature period of attracting FDI, in the meantime it means the labor costs and consumption per capita is higher than China.

The third thing I want to mention that it is well known that Chinese society and political situation remains stable for a long time, it ensures the profit sustainable, stable and secure, as I learned from marketing course there are many factor affect a country’s attractiveness for investors, one important of them is stable and peaceful society and political situation. In contrast with CEE countries, we don’t have the political transformation during the early 1990s, and we didn’t suffer a lot from the financial crisis in Asia in the middle of 1990s, when people asking why we invest China, these can be perfect explanations for answering their question. The international investments are trying to pursuing high profit and on the other hand security is necessary, it ensures everything. Let me ask why you don’t Libya at this moment? Considering the history of CEE countries, they have experienced a long economic and political transformation and suffered from the transition for several years, China will take the preemptive opportunities in terms of security, stability and sustainability.

1. John Harry Dunning, OBE (June 26, 1927 – January 29, 2009) was a British economist.
2. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/EU15#1995_enlargement by accumulating the data from Wikipedia—not so accurate.
3. “20 years of American invest in Poland” check the bibliograph: https://www.kpmg.com/PL/en/IssuesAndInsights/ArticlesPublications/Pages/20-Years-of-American-Investment-in-Poland-Report.aspxthere are some materials I read from the report and some opinions based on it



  1. There is no doubt that the siren song of the huge Chinese economy will continue to lure FDI.
    agriculture investments