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New Market Opportunities Steer Global Investment Activity

The United States was the top-ranking destination country for inward investment projects in 2006, according to IBM's annual study of countries receiving investment from multinational companies. The United States increased its share of inward investment projects from 7 percent in 2005 to 11 percent in 2006. The UK and France were the leading European countries for inward investment projects, as worldwide investment activity grew by more than 20 percent in terms of jobs created. The study by IBM's PLI-Global Location Strategies service also reveals that the top 15 inward investment locations in 2006 were responsible for 73 percent of the jobs created, as compared with 85 percent in 2005 - an indication that companies are widening their search for investment opportunities. For example, Indonesia, Kazakhstan, Pakistan, and Vietnam are among a growing number of emerging market countries that have been selected for new investments. India and China continue to lead in the total number of new manufacturing jobs created through inbound investment projects, ranking first and second, respectively. These nations are also now important sources of overall outbound investment, ranking among the top 15, with the United States, Japan, and Germany being the leaders in this regard. With regard to services, India and the Philippines dominate global shared services activity, with 32 percent and 16 percent of the jobs created, respectively. And India and China also lead in terms of R&D jobs created through inward investment, with 54 percent and 12 percent, respectively. "As global companies continue to seek ways to optimize their operating modes, they are increasingly establishing individual business components in locations that offer the best quality match for a specific unit," notes Gene DePrez, Global Co-leader, IBM-PLI Global Location Strategies. "The strong showing of emerging markets in this year's study and the momentum of mature economies attracting high numbers of projects reflect the ongoing evolution of the globally integrated enterprise as a business model."

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