International political economy, Foreign direct investments (FDI), Colonial history, Portugal, Emerging economies, Political risk


This project aims to examine the role of colonial legacies in the formation and governance of Portugal’s foreign direct investment (FDI) relations with Angola, Brazil, China and India. The recent intensification of FDI from emerging economies into their former colonial rulers brings renewed importance to understanding the echoes of colonialism in contemporary patterns of globalization. The project examines the influence of Portugal’s colonial history on present day FDI relations through three key pathways. First, it explores whether political economic relations established under the last years of Portugal’s colonial rule have guided the political reconstruction of international economic institutions over subsequent decades. Second, it evaluates whether they have facilitated the formation of strategic relations across key actors from Portugal and its former colonies to address political risks associated with FDI. Third, it investigates the extent to which awareness of colonial power relations continue to exert an influence on the governance of investment conflicts across Portugal, on one hand, and Angola, Brazil, China and India, on the other, in present days. This project is part of a broader endeavor to examine the long-term implications of colonial history on FDI relations in the global economy.