The ‘making of’ national giants: technology and governments shaping the international expansion of oil companies from Brazil and China

Flavia Pereira de Carvalho & Andrea Goldstein


This chapter analyses foreign direct investments (henceforth FDI) in the oil industry from two large emerging economies, Brazil and China, with the purpose to understand the role of Governments and technology in the internationalisation strategies of those firms. The chapter shows that the Brazilian oil company, Petrobras, internationalised in the 1970s in order to secure oil resources, and throughout time developed technological capabilities that explain its current success and worldwide expansion. Chinese firms have risen later and are making their outward moves in order to catch up technologically with the world's leading firms.

Key words: multinational corporations, emerging economies, oil companies, technology, technological exploitation, competitive advantages.

JEL Codes: F23, O25, O38, O57

UNU-MERIT Working Papers ISSN 1871-9872

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