In 1993, there were an estimated 37,000 transnational corporations worldwide, with around 200,000 foreign affiliates. They accounted for one quarter of the combined gross national products of the countries of the world and their flow of foreign direct investment exceeds $255 billion annually. In developing countries this investment exceeds $36 billion annually, and its influence is immense impacting not solely in economic areas but also social, cultural, political and environmental.
The 100 largest TNCs (excluding those in banking and finance) held $3.4 trillion in global assets in 1992 of which about 40 percent were located outside their home countries. The top 100 TNCs control about one third of the world stock of foreign direct investment, which amounted to a flow of $195 billion in 1993.
In 1989 it was estimated that some 200 global corporations control nearly 80% of the productive assets of the non-socialist world. It was predicted that within 25 years they will own production assets in excess of $4 trillion, or 54% of the economic wealth of the planet. In 1982 the total revenue of the top 200 transnationals in the services sector was $1,192 billion, compared to $1,853 billion for the manufacturing transnationals. This implies a reduction of the power of governments to control vital areas of economic policy. It has also meant that TNCs have been able to restrict the growth of competition by a variety of monopolistic practices.