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Multinational strategies in Latin America: comparing East Asian, European and North American multinationals

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Over the past decade, multinationals (MNCs) have followed three main objectives while entering Latin America: efficiency seeking, growth seeking and resource seeking. Efficiency seeking MNCs aim to reduce costs in their global production process through access to cheaper labor, and proximity to destination markets such as the United States. Growth seeking firms enter Latin American markets to grow and/or acquire new markets. They are by nature more dependent on the macroeconomic conditions in local markets for their success. Resource seeking firms enter Latin America in the search of minerals, metals, and hydrocarbons. This paper introduces the concept of "natural markets" to explain the relative successes of MNCs from different regions - Europe (mainly Iberian), USA and Asia. 'Natural markets' for a MNC are defined as those markets sharing a common history or language or having a high level of physical proximity with the country of origin of the MNC. This paper proposes that a firm focusing on natural markets has a comparative advantage, and thus increases the probability of its success. The paper also draws upon the experiences of successful MNCs in Latin America to infer some lessons for East Asian MNCs wishing to operate in the region.

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en

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application/pdf

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http://flora.insead.edu/fichiersti_wp/inseadwp2004/2004-08.pdf

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