Sustainability Impacts of Chinese Outward Direct Investment: A review of the literature

By Yuan Wang, Simon Zadek, Kelly Yu, Mark Halle, Samuel Ortiz Velasquez, Lin Zhang, Hanjie Wang, Published by IISD, February 2016

Outward direct investment (ODI) by the People’s Republic of China has grown very rapidly since 2004, and in 2014, China’s ODI flows attained USD 123.1 billion. Numerous academic studies, policy papers and media reports discuss the operations and impacts of Chinese companies overseas. This literature review develops a comprehensive understanding of the sustainable impact of Chinese ODI. It aims at providing a balanced view of the current state of knowledge of the sustainable development impact of Chinese ODI, an overview of the diverse perspectives and concerns relevant to Chinese policy-makers and companies “going out,” insights into the Chinese policy and business strategy measures that would improve outcomes and address concerns, and direction on further avenues for research and possible future collaboration. Available at