F. Vinci

Good reasons for foreign investments in Sicily

  • Abstract

Informations and abstract

Keywords: Foreign Direct Investments; Incentives

The author suggests a sociological reflection aimed at exploring whether foreign investors are attracted on making investments in regions like Sicily. Using Boudon's concept of rationality, and recent results of Italian and European re search (Viesti, Daniele, Basile et al.) on Foreign Direct Investments (FDI), the potential attraction of foreign investors towards this territory is investigated. Isolated and not coordinated systems of incentives, a reduced market dimension, small firms and inadequate communication networks determine conditions continuously undermining Sicily's competitive advantage. Nevertheless, the steady trend of FDI in this region, from 2002 to 2006, outlines a more complex picture of such a regional territory: it points out specific business and family histories supported not only by instrumental reasons but also by traditional and emotional grounds collectively legitimated. Such ambivalent data ask a critical analysis of incentive systems and regulations in force (incentives to labour cost, programme and location contracts).This study highlights the reliability and certainty of transactions as indicators underlining the efficiency of illegal costs which control foreign investors in taking decisions. These costs keep territorial resources from transforming into capabilities, into economic ways and activities useful for the general collective functioning of the community, and, consequently, positively appreciable by foreign investors. Collective processes aimed at legitimating nonparticularistic economic tendencies, the spread of FDI promoting autonomous agencies, the reconsidered promotional role of local authorities and the purely entrepreneurial role of investors appear as useful starting points for reflecting on efficient public actions and suggesting FDI as a central aspect in more and more global political and economic contexts.

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