Filling the void for an international business law reference designed for those with little or no legal background, A Tour of Law for Global Commerce provides an understandable introduction to the basics of what an international business person needs to know in order to function in the international legal environment—including cultural and historical perspectives that affect how laws are applied, how international business disputes are resolved, advertising and marketing regulations and major trading agreements in force— and succeed in the real world of international business. The reference provides a complete overview of the legal systems of the world, economic integration, the law of the oceans and airspace, the laws of customs and immigration, advertising regulations around the world, as well as a panorama of treaties affecting international commerce and a guidebook to international business transactions. For those employed in a job with an international dimension.
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LAW OF GLOBAL COMMERCE: A TOUR presents the background necessary for addressing legal problems that international business people encounter.
Preparing for a career in international business is a daunting task. A businessperson stepping off an airplane in a foreign land often encounters profound changes in business technique. Conversations take place in a different language; personalities and negotiating postures are dramatically different; unfamiliar tax systems come into play; and curious religious practices may bias the process. Not least of all, the legal envirof2ment may be strange and threatening. If the problems of international business are daunting, however, the opportunities are magnificent. Languages can be learned, interpersonal skills polished, experts hired to help, the risks assessed, and the deal made. Hopefully, the result will be profits and personal satisfaction.
The books available concerning international legal topics are generally written on narrow topics for lawyers and law students. They contain much information of little value to business, such as the methods used to resolve disputes between governments. Often they do not explain the principles of the national legal. systems that will govern the part of any transaction that falls in the foreign courts. Many international business law books contain so much law terminology, they may be more indecipherable than the language spoken in the foreign country! And many contain more footnotes and bibliography than text. Most existing international law books are devoid of cultural and historical perspective, which makes it difficult for the student to truly understand how the law is likely to be applied.
International business is important at the University of Texas Pan American and the University of Tartu where this book was written and first used. I like to use just the right teaching materials for my students. This book is a "just right" combination of background material and law.
This book contains information to address the legal problems that international business activities most frequently encounter. It is written for business students and business practitioners, not lawyers, though many lawyers have told me they enjoyed reading it. It is written like a newspaper, completely without "legalese" and "academese," and it should be easy to understand, even for those who have English as a second language. After reading this book, the reader will have a basic understanding of the following concepts:
This book, therefore, touches several academic disciplines, among them business, comparative and international law, and a smattering of history and culture. I have tired to write it in a way that is interesting to read. If I have succeeded in that, the credit belongs to three extraordinary high school teachers, named Browning, Darnell, and Inman who patiently taught me how to write. Because they were, perhaps, better at teaching than I was as their student, I thank Prentice Hall's equally extraordinary copy editors who help me look good when they have finished improving this book as they did with my former volume, A Tour of International Trade.
I am also grateful for the support I have received from the Accounting and Business Law Department at the University of Texas Pan American where I am based. I also appreciate the support received from the Eurofaculty of the University of Tartu Law School in Estonia. I finished the book there while I was lecturing as a visiting Fulbright Scholar.
This book, in its nearly final form, was first used there in Estonia with students for whom English was a foreign language. The comments, suggestions, and perspectives of my Estonian students were helpful in making my final revisions and in achieving my goal of writing a law book that anyone who had mastered the language reasonably well could understand. These students were my true reviewers, and their success in mastering the content is my best reward for this effort. I will always remember my days and students in Tartu with fondness and gratitude.
I am proud of this book. I know that it will help prepare the student for the real world of international business.
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