glyph 592: SEZ, Special Economic Zones: innovations in land holding and governance systems ..... a multitude of experiments testing the balances necessary for the evolution of better freeorder ..... Lubeck's Lex Mercatoria, merchant law . loans to governments, tax, taxation, taxes ... England: King Edward II, Edward IV . Anglo-Hanseatic War, Treaty of Utrecht, London Steelyard ..... Scandanavia, Medieval Europe, Baltic, North Sea, Holland... overlapping competing jurisdictions, regulatory arbitrage ... trade monopolies, oligopolies, trade concessions, boycots, trade sanctions, arbitration, courts, guilds ... privateering, piracy ... failing states . cities as islands of governance


Emergence of a New Hanseatic League

special economic zones will reshape global governance

Mark Frazier's visionary paper describing a practical response to the depradations of governments that do not serve their citizens well. Originally published in the Chapman Law Review [CHAP. L. REV. 333 (2018)]


"In this century, it will be the city not the state that becomes the nexus of economic and political power.' —Parag Khanna, a senior research fellow at the National University of Singapore. —Khanna, Parag, 'When Cities Rule the World,' McKinsey Report, February 2011

"As nation states slide towards dysfunction and corruption, rewards grow from creating trustworthy alternatives areas whose governance is free of the surrounding woes."

"The last favor that a government can give once its political favor-giving has paralyzed an economy is to exempt areas from its own predations ..." —Alvin Rabushka

"Today, truly polycentric systems of law and governance are emerging in Special Economic Zones. These systems allow individuals chose among legal systems without physically having to relocate. The leading innovator in this regard is Dubai, which since 2004 has allowed firms operating under its Financial Services free zone regime to choose between resolving disputes under the law of the United Arab Emirates, or under British Common Law. Local courts now have no power to overrule decisions made by the retired British judges who run the Common Law courts in Dubai. "

"An open source initiative launched by Chapman University law professor Tom W. Bell, ULEX makes it possible to integrate best practices from the statutes of a range of highly successful SEZ as well as from established nation states, and apply them in small demonstration sites that can be designed to scale up to areas comparable to Singapore, Hong Kong, and Dubai in size."

"Ultimately, the League's strategy can vest all people on Earth as shareholders in newly-created depoliticized areas."

Published in the Chapman Law Review. A copy is hosted by Explorers Foundation with the author's permission, and with our thanks to Chapman for their editorial judgement. Citation: Mark Frazier, Emergence of a New Hanseatic League: How Special Economic Zones Will Reshape Global Governance, 21 CHAP. L. REV. 333 (2018).
December 22, 2017; edited/updated December 30, 2020

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