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Role of Multinational Corporations (MNC)
Multinational corporations (MNCs) are huge industrial organizations having a wide network of branches and subsidiaries spread over a number of countries. The two main characteristics of MNCs are their large size and the fact that their worldwide activities are centrally controlled by the parent companies. Such a company may enter into joint venture with a company in another country. There may be agreement among companies of different countries in respect of division of production, market, etc. These companies are to be found in almost all the advanced countries, with the USA perhaps the biggest amongst them. Their operations extend beyond their own countries, and cover not only the advanced countries but also the LDCs (Less Developed Countries). Many MNCs have annual sales volume in excess of the entire GNPs of the developing countries in which they operate. MNCs have great impact on the development process of the Underdeveloped countries. Let us discuss the arguments for and against the operation of MNCs in underdeveloped countries.
Arguments for MNCs (The positive role): The MNCs play an important role in the economic development of underdeveloped countries. 1. Filling Savings Gap: The first important contribution of MNCs is its role in filling the resource gap between targeted or desired investment and domestically mobilized savings. For example, to achieve a 7% growth rate of national output if the required rate of saving is 21% but if the savings that can be domestically mobilised is only 16% then there is a ‘saving gap’ of 5%. If the country can fill this gap with foreign direct investments from the MNCs, it will be in a better position to achieve its target rate of economic growth. 2. Filling Trade Gap: The second contribution relates to filling the foreign exchange or trade gap. An inflow of foreign capital can reduce or even remove the deficit in the...
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