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August 30 -- The Bureau of Economic Analysis (BEA) invites the public to submit comments to OMB by September 29, 2021 regarding the proposal to continue the Annual Survey of Direct Investment Abroad (BE-11).
 
The Annual Survey of U.S. Direct Investment Abroad (BE-11) obtains sample data on the financial structure and operations of U.S. parents and their foreign affiliates. The data are needed to provide reliable, useful, and timely measures of U.S. direct investment abroad to assess its impact on the U.S. and foreign economies. The sample data are used to derive universe estimates in nonbenchmark years from similar data reported in the BE-10, Benchmark Survey of U.S. Direct Investment Abroad, which is conducted every five years. The data collected include balance sheets; income statements; property, plant, and equipment; employment and employee compensation; merchandise trade; sales of goods and services; taxes; and research and development activity.
 
BEA uses BE-11 annual survey data to derive estimates of value added in production by U.S. parents and their foreign affiliates. These estimates can be used to calculate and analyze the affiliates’ share of total production in foreign host countries, the parents’ share of total U.S. gross domestic product, and the respective shares of parents and affiliates in the worldwide production of U.S. multinationals. In addition, data for the BE-11 annual survey provide financial statements against which data on transactions and positions between parents and affiliates that are reported on the quarterly BE-577 survey can be checked for consistency.
 
The data are used by several U.S. Government agencies, including the Office of the U.S. Trade Representative, the International Trade Administration of the Commerce Department, the Departments of Treasury and State, the Council of Economic Advisers, and the Federal Reserve Board to support U.S. international economic policy. The annual survey provides detailed information, by country and industry, on assets, sales, employment, and other measures of affiliates' activities that the U.S. Government requires to assess their effects on U.S. and foreign economies.

Bilateral investment treaties (BITs) are negotiated with interested countries to facilitate and protect U.S. investment interests. During BIT negotiations, data from this and related surveys provide important information on the level and impact of direct investment on the U.S. economy and the economies of foreign countries. The data also help identify areas where U.S. direct investment may be restricted.
 
International organizations and private researchers use data from the BE-11 annual survey in assessing the impact of U.S. direct investment abroad on the U.S. and foreign economies. International organizations that regularly make use of BEA data on U.S. direct investment abroad include the United Nations, International Monetary Fund, Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development, and World Bank. Numerous private researchers also use the data; use by researchers affiliated with the National Bureau of Economic Research has been among the most extensive.
 
The potential respondent universe for the BE-11 annual survey is derived from the 2019 Benchmark Survey of U.S. Direct Investment Abroad, BE-10, and consists of all U.S. persons (in the broad legal sense, including companies) that own 10 percent or more of the voting securities of an incorporated foreign business enterprise, or an equivalent interest in an unincorporated foreign business enterprise.

Sample selection for the U.S. parents and foreign affiliates reported in the annual survey is based on the size and degree of U.S. ownership of the foreign affiliates. The size thresholds are stated in terms of total assets, sales or gross operating revenues, and net income after income taxes, whether positive or negative. If any of the three items exceeds the size threshold, then a report must be filed. The BE-11 annual survey has multiple survey forms. Estimates of the sample size and response rates below are based on recent BE-11 surveys. These are presented in terms of assets, representing the proportion of total assets for each of the populations that are accounted for by reporting entities.   

BEA Direct Investment Abroad webpage:  https://www.bea.gov/data/intl-trade-investment/direct-investment-country-and-industry
FDIUS proposal to OMB:  https://www.reginfo.gov/public/do/PRAViewICR?ref_nbr=202105-0608-002 Click IC List for forms, View Supporting Statement for technical documentation. Click Comment to submit.
FR notice inviting public comment to OMB:  https://www.federalregister.gov/documents/2021/08/30/2021-18628/agency-information-collection-activities-submission-to-the-office-of-management-and-budget-omb-for
 
For further information: Ricardo Limes, Chief, Multinational Operations Branch (MOB), Direct Investment Division (DID), BEA  Ricardo.limes@bea.gov 301-278-9659
 
For AEA members wishing to submit comments to OMB, "A Primer on How to Respond to Calls for Comment on Federal Data Collections" is available at https://www.aeaweb.org/content/file?id=5806

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