The Internationalisation of Production and Deindustrialisation
We now live in an era where production and markets are controlled by giant corporations with a trans-national base. We also live in an era where national and international controls over trade and capital flows have been progressively reduced. The resulting combination of unified international markets and giant international firms bestriding them provides a ready mechanism for the processes of deindustrialisation to develop wherever the conditions for capitalist accumulation are weakened. In contrast to the earlier history of the development of monopolies and cartels around the turn of the century, when protectsionism was demanded to restrict or eliminate foreign competition in domestic and colonian markets, the new period of international oligopoly is characterized by demands on the part of the giant corporationsnfor free trade and the and the supranational institutions to pursue and sanction it : a global freedom to pursue accumulation, given their own dominance within the global system and given the threat, or potential threat, of organized labour and universal suffrage at the level of the nation state. It might be said we now have a neo-imperalism of free trade in similar vein to the nineteenth century British imperialism of free trade, but this time, rather than being of national orign, the imperialism is that of the Transnationals.
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