This paper studies outward foreign direct investment (OFDI) enterprises in the Yangtze River Economic Belt. Using geographical information system (GIS) spatial analysis and SPSS correlation analysis methods, it analyzes the change in the spatial distribution of OFDI enterprises in 2010, 2014, and 2018. It explores the influencing factors that have an impact on this change. The results show the following: (1) The geographical distribution of OFDI enterprises in the Yangtze River Economic Belt is uneven. In the downstream region, OFDI enterprises have significant advantages in both quantity and quality over those in the mid- and up-stream regions. In recent years, a multi-core spatial pattern has gradually emerged. (2) The factors influencing the spatial distribution of OFDI enterprises have been gradually changing from one dominant factor, i.e., technological innovation capability, to four core factors, namely, urbanization level, economic development level, technological innovation capability, and degree of economic openness. The research results serve as an important reference for future policy adjustment in the Yangtze River Economic Belt. First, the Yangtze River Economic Belt should adjust industrial policies; comprehensively increase the level of OFDI; accelerate the upgrading and transformation of regional industries; and, at the same time, inject vitality into the development of the world economy. Moreover, the downstream region should fully play a leading role in the Yangtze River Economic Belt, especially in encouraging OFDI enterprises to establish global production networks. Meanwhile, enterprises in the upstream region are encouraged to establish regional production networks to accelerate the development of inland open highlands.
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