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Political Risk By: Ying Lu. Introduction Political exposure: the degree to which a company’s value is threatened by political events America’s presidential.

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Presentation on theme: "Political Risk By: Ying Lu. Introduction Political exposure: the degree to which a company’s value is threatened by political events America’s presidential."— Presentation transcript:

1 Political Risk By: Ying Lu

2 Introduction Political exposure: the degree to which a company’s value is threatened by political events America’s presidential or congressional elections Political risk: the variability in the value of the firm (or subsidiary) that is caused by uncertainty about political or policy changes

3 Effect Host country of Policies Host country’s DFI policies Countries prohibit investments threatening national security Dubai port issue, maritime and airport cabotage In cases of JV, some countries require majority ownership by “host” partner Thailand and India Host countries often try to protect domestic firms and industries from foreign competition This may induce more FDI  Toyota and Hyundai have built plants in the US to circumvent trade barriers

4 Host country continuum Friendliness to FDI Complete prohibition Enormous incentives North KoreaIreland and Singapore IndiaU.S

5 Effect of home-country and third- country policies Home country policies: MNC home country’s policies that restrict trade and investment activities Often overlooked but very important in formulating a corporate strategy to deal with political risk US embargo against Cuba Tend to have technology restrictions to protect national security US defense firms probably shouldn’t be able to sell nuclear technology to Iran (they aren’t)

6 Reasons for FDI policies Often driven by foreign policy Some Arab nations prohibit trade between themselves and Israel Want to protect domestic industry Protectionist policies to protect constituents Taxation has a large role as part FDI policies Aaron’s presentation Companies seek out countries with the lowest tax rate Countries with a lot of foreign trade/direct investment may find it necessary to lower tax rates to increase tax revenues

7 Nature of political risk Host country policy TaxationExpropriation and nationalization Foreign exchange control Price control Forces JV Equity dilution

8 Nature of political risk Home country policy Required divestment Sanctions Licensing requirements Change in tax treatment of foreign income (the tax holiday) Transfer prices

9 Multilateral Policies UNCTC: United Nations Center on Transnational Corporation OECD: Organization for Economic cooperation and Development WTO: World Trade Organization EU: European Union Serve as checklists for mutual privileges and responsibilities

10 General vs. Selective General policy changes: not directed at FDI Any change in tax code or government policies can effect everyone Selective policy changes: directed mainly at FDI Usually industry specific Most costly kind of government policy Drives away FDI  Less tax revenue for government  May reduce total investment

11 Benefits and costs of hostility toward FDI Benefits Expropriation: firm’s assets Currency controls: more macroeconomic control More regulation: microeconomic control over affected industry Tax: increase in tax revenue Cost Expropriation: less FDI  decline in economic base, higher unemployment, and less technology transfer Macroeconomic controls: general stagnation Tax: reduction in tax revenues because firms will begin to shop for more favorable tax rates

12 Bargaining Power (host country) Size of market Wealth of market Abundance of raw materials Host country has more bargaining power if they are strong in these areas Can play companies against one another Intervention is likely to takes place when bargaining power of the country exceeds that of company

13 Bargaining power (firm) Uniqueness of product or technology required to produce it Rate of technological advancement Size of company Growth in operations Usually not at the same rate as the host country Brazil vs. Bolivia

14 Change of Power

15 Political Risk Assessment (host country) The “macro approach” Aggregation of subjective assessments by a panel of experts on various economic, social, and political factors Global Research Center Political Risk Yearbook (Political Risk Services of East Syracuse, New York) International Country Guide The Economist Intelligence Unit  Provides quarterly ratings and individual report on each country

16 Political Risk Assessment (host country) Aggregate SummaryAverage Overall Risk Avg Pol Avg Eco Avg Leg Avg Tax Avg Ope Avg Sec All Countries Asia-Pacific CIS Europe Latin America and Caribbean Middle East and North Africa North America Sub-Saharan Africa

17 Political Risk Assessment (home country) Trade climates Investment attitudes Potential for embargos Forced divestments

18 Political Risk Assessment (micro approach) Micro approach: industry-specific and firm specific factors Political risk depends directly on the characteristic of foreign investment Who owns it? What technology does it use? What is its economic sector?

19 Political Risk Assessment (take away) It can be diversified away High risk (variance) is usually associated with high (mean) returns. Most of the variance in returns to investment is driven by local and global economic conditions. Global economic conditions account for the portion of risk you cannot diversify away (the covariant portion of your cash flows from investments in various parts of the world). Political risk is local and residual (not correlated with global economic conditions). Therefore, you ought to be able to diversify it away.

20 Managing Political Risk (ex ante) OPIC: Overseas Private Investment Corporation 50% of firm must be own by US citizens Foreign corporation: 95% must be owned by US entity Subsidiary MIGA: World Bank Multilateral Investment Guarantee Agency Incorporation in member nation Majority own by citizens of member nation 97 countries have signed MIGA convention, 71 have ratified  Ratification is required to participate  Host country need to also be a member of MIGA Lloyds of London  private insurance firm

21 Types of Coverage Expropriation: protects against partial or total loss of investment as result of governmental actions Losses are assessed based on book value Currency inconvertibility: protection against losses arising from an investor’s inability to convert local currency into the foreign currency specified in the policy Devaluation is not covered Date of loss is considered to be the date when the request for funds transfer is denied, not on the expiration date of the stated waiting period

22 Types of Coverage con’t War and civil disturbance: protects against losses resulting from damage, destruction or disappearance of assets as the result of acts of war or civil disturbance Covers: revolution, insurrection, coup d`etats, sabotage, and terrorism In case of war firms do not have to loss property to file a claim, they do have to show interruption to business Losses are assessed at book value Breach of contract: protects against a host country’s breach or repudiation of the investor’s contract Covers losses on project investments not loss of profits

23 Managing Political Incidents (ex post) Follow the law and alter operations accordingly Firm with low bargaining power usually have no choice but to do so Discontinue operations The law may hurt your operations to such an extent that following the law is not acceptable (IBM) Negotiate a settlement Firm can use threat to discontinue operations to negotiate favorable treatment, but only if the country stands to lose if the firm leaves

24 Private vs. Gov’t Insurance Private Not host country nationality requirements Will insure new and existing projects Shorter terms (3 year basis-- renewable) More flexibility and opportunity to negotiate policy provisions Non-disclosure provision Harder to collect on your claim Government Usually requires “home” country citizenship Only insure new projects and expansion to existing ones Longer terms (15-20 years) Usually cheaper than private insurance Less flexibility in policy provisions Full disclosure to host government Easier to collect on claim

25 De Facto Political Risk Insurance Joint venture Borrow from a local bank Get a multilateral institutions to be an investor World bank or Inter-American Development Bank


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