Environmental Regulations and Corporate Strategy: A NAFTA Perspective

By Alan Rugman; John Kirton et al. | Go to book overview
Save to active project

MMT and Investment Dispute Settlement

The new conditions of complex institutional responsiveness in general, and the new network of NAFTA institutions in particular, offer firms of different scale and scope a rich array of specific incentives for overcoming national and local environmental regulatory protectionism in critical foreign markets and thus for enhancing their overall competitiveness. To what extent have these new opportunities actually been identified and employed by firms? With what skill have they been implemented? And what success have they enjoyed? In short, are the rational incentives offered by the new conditions of complex institutional responsiveness a powerful predictor of, and explanation for, actual firm behaviour?

To address these questions, and test the logic outlined in the previous chapter, this chapter, along with the following two chapters, conducts detailed case studies of three particular environmental regulatory issues that have involved industries from the three North American countries and that have engaged in varying degrees and ways NAFTAs' environmentally related institutions. The first is the case of MMT, an apparently environmentally harmful automobile fuel additive whose importation was banned by the Canadian government, leading its US-owned exporter into and distributor within Canada to activate NAFTA's Chapter 11 investment dispute settlement mechanism. The second is the case of agriculture, where disputes over the often discriminatory application of sanitary and phytosanitary standards have restricted trade throughout North America and beyond. The third is the case of the automotive industry, with a particular focus on efforts to reduce vehicle emissions on the part of original equipment manufacturers, fuel suppliers, and those involved in operational inspection and maintenance.

Together, a detailed exploration of these three cases allows a careful, disciplined process tracing and test of how complex institutional responsiveness is practised-- how firms actually employ the NAFTA institutions and other instruments, as a matter of corporate and political strategy, to overcome, reduce, and circumvent environmental regulatory protectionism and thereby enhance competitiveness. These three cases embrace all four types of firms at their different levels of internationalization. The agricultural case centres on domestic producers faced with competition from imports, and often competing with small home-based exporters seeking to take advantage of the newly opened NAFTA market place. The MMT case deals with a US home-based exporter and multinational, Ethyl Corporation. And the automotive case has at its core the US-owned big three automakers and their major suppliers who are transnational MNEs operating on a global scale.


Notes for this page

Add a new note
If you are trying to select text to create highlights or citations, remember that you must now click or tap on the first word, and then click or tap on the last word.
Loading One moment ...
Project items
Cite this page

Cited page

Citations are available only to our active members.
Sign up now to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

Cited page

Bookmark this page
Environmental Regulations and Corporate Strategy: A NAFTA Perspective


Text size Smaller Larger
Search within

Search within this book

Look up

Look up a word

  • Dictionary
  • Thesaurus
Please submit a word or phrase above.
Print this page

Print this page

Why can't I print more than one page at a time?

While we understand printed pages are helpful to our users, this limitation is necessary to help protect our publishers' copyrighted material and prevent its unlawful distribution. We are sorry for any inconvenience.
Full screen
/ 262

matching results for page

Cited passage

Citations are available only to our active members.
Sign up now to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

Cited passage

Welcome to the new Questia Reader

The Questia Reader has been updated to provide you with an even better online reading experience.  It is now 100% Responsive, which means you can read our books and articles on any sized device you wish.  All of your favorite tools like notes, highlights, and citations are still here, but the way you select text has been updated to be easier to use, especially on touchscreen devices.  Here's how:

1. Click or tap the first word you want to select.
2. Click or tap the last word you want to select.

OK, got it!

Thanks for trying Questia!

Please continue trying out our research tools, but please note, full functionality is available only to our active members.

Your work will be lost once you leave this Web page.

For full access in an ad-free environment, sign up now for a FREE, 1-day trial.

Already a member? Log in now.

Are you sure you want to delete this highlight?