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Services outweigh manufacturing in most OECD countries, accounting for more than 50% of total national turnover, but manufacturing remains the leading source of turnover in many countries when it comes to foreign affiliates, according to Measuring Globalisation: The Role of Multinationals in OECD Economies.

Indeed, Swiss-based manufacturing firms employ more people in their affiliates abroad than the total national workforce, while in Sweden 70% as many people work for foreign affiliates of Swedish companies as work in Sweden. In services, however, the figures are much lower, at below 5% of the national workforce in all countries for which comparative figures are available, except Switzerland, where it is close to 25%. The levels are lower in Finland, with affiliates abroad employing the equivalent of a third of the national workforce in manufacturing and around 5% in services. But in terms of turnover, these foreign affiliates account for 45% in the manufacturing sector and more than 20% in Finland. In most countries for which comparative figures are available, manufacturing employment by foreign affiliates outstrips that in services, except in Portugal where the ratio is below 5% for both, and so is turnover.

• OECD, Foreign Affiliates Trade in Services database

©OECD Observer No 231/232, May 2002




Economic data

GDP growth: +0.2% Q4 2019
Consumer price inflation: 2.1% Dec 2019
Trade (G20): -0.7% exp, -0.9% imp, Q3 2019
Unemployment: 5.1% December 2019
Last update: 20 February 2020

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