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Searching for a balance: Britain's trade policy towards Japan, 1950-54.

Yokoi, Noriko (1998) Searching for a balance: Britain's trade policy towards Japan, 1950-54. PhD thesis, London School of Economics and Political Science (United Kingdom).

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Abstract

The purpose of this thesis is to examine Britain's trade policy towards Japan between 1950 and 1954. This period was chosen as these were the years when the foundations of Britain's post-war trade and diplomatic relations with Japan were established. Moreover, the study was undertaken to redress the imbalance in scholarly research which is dominated by U.S.-Japan relations. Although the study does not refute the dominant political and economic influence of the United States in Japan, it elucidates the role played by other countries during Japan's early post-war period. The study contends that there was a period in the early fifties when Britain played an influential role in its trade relations with Japan. This was primarily because Japan relied on the sterling area for one-third of its imports. As a banker to the sterling area's dollar reserves, Britain had influence over the area's policy as a whole. In order to understand the reasons why Britain's influence over Japan waned, the thesis examines the sterling payments agreement talks between Japan and Britain. By studying the negotiations behind the agreement it is possible to ascertain the gradual independence of the sterling area countries from British control, and the establishment of their respective bilateral relations with Japan as Britain became sidelined. The other issue examined in the study is Britain's opposition to Japan's entry into the General Agreements on Tariffs and Trade and the factors which led to this policy. The study of the two issues highlights the complexity of the decision-making process in foreign policy formulation. In particular, it indicates the various interests that had to be taken into consideration, such as domestically the views of the textiles industry in Lancashire and those of the various ministries in Whitehall, and internationally Britain's relations with the United States, Japan and the Commonwealth.

Item Type: Thesis (PhD)
Uncontrolled Keywords: History, World History, Political Science, International Law and Relations
Sets: Collections > ProQuest Etheses
Departments > International History
URI: http://etheses.lse.ac.uk/id/eprint/2567

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