Machinery-Building Clusters and Transnational Corporations

DOI: 10.20542/0131-2227-2016-60-8-53-62
V. Sokolov, Bank of Russia, 12, Neglinnaya Str., Moscow, 107016, Russian Federation (

Abstract. The article considers the problem of the trading and production links between the three regional machinery-building clusters and the role of the transnational corporations in the developing of these clusters. It is emphasized that the East Asian countries became the largest exporters of machinery and equipment compared with North America and European Union. The trade flows of machinery and equipment from East Asia to North America (NAFTA countries) and European Union are larger than the counter flows. The difference between the East Asian shipments to NAFTA and the North American shipments to East Asia is growing and the difference between the flows between the East Asia and European Union is diminishing. USA and NAFTA as a whole integration unit are net importers of machinery and equipment. But the North American machinery-building cluster is preserving technological leadership in this area. For example, the larger share of the parts and components used by the US computer industry is imported but the research and development services are mostly of domestic origin. The article shows that the main transnational corporations in the machinery-building are the corporations of the “old” developed countries. During four years (2010-2013) the list of the 100 largest non-financial TNCs of the world included persistently 15 machinery-building corporations: 5 from USA, 4 from Japan, 3 from Germany and one company from each of the following countries: France, Italy and Netherlands. The global machinery-building cluster is still dominated by companies from USA, Japan and Germany. The companies from South Korea and Taiwan appear in the list incidentally. The Chinese companies are absent in the list. So the East Asian machinery-building cluster is still directed by the companies based outside the continental producing countries. The Asian corporations are trying to enhance their technological level.

Keywords: geoeconomics, machinery-building, cluster, international division of labor, global supply chains, trade flows, transnational corporations, investment, R&D 


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For citation:
Sokolov V. Machinery-Building Clusters and Transnational Corporations. World Eonomy and International Relations, 2016, vol. 60, no. 8, pp. 53-62.

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