The Legal and Economic Basis of International Trade

The Legal and Economic Basis of International Trade

The Legal and Economic Basis of International Trade

The Legal and Economic Basis of International Trade

Synopsis

New economic conditions in the developed and newly industrializing world increasingly force us to question the foundations of existing international economic relationships. This study sheds some light on the complex relationship between law and economics. Beginning with the historical evidence of market structure, trade, and law, the work progresses to discuss transportation, export finance, marine insurance, and technology transfers. The author provides some interesting insights into and discussion on the future of international trade and the untested relationship between social and political chaos and the law.

Excerpt

This book is a study of the relationship between law and economics and the international arena, focusing on export trade. We undertake this investigation because commercial legal development has often been thought to follow existing business practice. While in some senses this is perhaps a truism rather than an empirical finding, this study hopes to shed some light on the complex relationship between law and economics. Some of the historical evidence will first appear as theory, but as we gradually penetrate the edifice of market structure, in both earlier and later European societies, we can then more fully appreciate the supporting and initiating roles of the rules surrounding the law of international trade. We hope to capture some of the divergency of contributions made by trade theorists and economic anthropologists as to reasons for international trade. We then look at the gains achievable from it, its extent and reach and finally some of its latest practical legal insights now appearing as conventions to unify private international law, reflecting a concerned of market economics.

Of course, the most compelling reason justifying this study is that new economic conditions in both the developed and newly industrializing will increasingly force us to question the foundations of existing international economic relationships.

It will be one of our surprises to discover that the extensive networks and practices of export trading were probably more firmly established as a concept two millennia ago than they are today. In fact, many of the trading and legal traditions in use today were perfected in a far earlier age. During the classical period we are most interested in, no dark and medieval age closed down the world of learning and diffusion of culture as transpired in Europe after the death of the last dynastic . . .

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