This working paper provides an overview of foreign direct investment (FDI) in the automotive industry in Eastern Europe and Spain since the 1990s.

The authors examine the main trends and patterns of FDI in Czechia, Poland, Hungary, Slovakia, Slovenia, Romania, Hungary, Serbia and Spain as well as the impact of the 2008 economic crisis on further developments of their automotive sector. The study underlines the long-term structural costs of external ownership and control of economic activities for peripheral regions in the form of 'truncated development'.

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