This paper argues that inflows of foreign direct investment can facilitate export upgrading in host countries. Using customs data merged with firm-level information for 2005-2011, it shows a positive relationship between the quality of products exported by Romanian firms and the presence of
multinational enterprises (MNEs) in the upstream (input-supplying) industries. Export quality is also positively related to MNE presence in the downstream (input-sourcing) industries and the same industry, but these relationships are less robust. These conclusions hold both when the product
quality is proxied with unit values and when it is estimated following the approach of Khandelwal et al. (2013).