New transnational governance and the changing composition of regulatory pluralism in Southeast Asia

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Over the past three decades, Transnational Production Regimes (TPRs) have become the main source of technical and regulatory knowledge for Southeast Asia corporations. Typically TPRs transfer knowledge from lead firms located in the industrial North to supplier firms located in Southeast Asia. Regulatory knowledge transferred through TPRs largely bypasses Southeast Asian laws and legal institutions to directly influence the behavior of supplier firms. Although socio-economic studies show that TPRs are responsible for generating much wealth creation in the region, they hardly register in the socio-legal literature. Drawing on ethnographic studies conducted in Vietnam, this paper will attempt to explain why different types of TPRs produce different regulatory responses in Vietnamese firms. Preliminary findings suggest differences in the way that regulatory knowledge transmitted through Northeast Asian and Euro-American TPRs is absorbed and integrated into the organisational fabric of Vietnamese firms. They also shed light on two well-documented phenomena in Vietnam. In conclusion the paper will argue that TPRs displace state commercial laws and are partially responsible for the slow progress of conventional law and development projects in changing regulatory practices. It will contend that the different kinds of TPRs generate regulatory pluralism and the uneven application of state law in different business sectors.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)65 - 95
Number of pages31
JournalAsian Journal of Comparative Law
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 2014

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