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Title: Beyond oil : the political economy of Saudi-East Asian industrial relations, 1953-2013
Author: Yamada, Makio
ISNI:       0000 0004 5359 333X
Awarding Body: University of Oxford
Current Institution: University of Oxford
Date of Award: 2015
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p>This thesis investigates the political economy of Saudi–East Asian industrial relations in the past six decades, between 1953 and 2013. The analysis focuses on industrial diversification in Saudi Arabia and how this has affected Saudi Arabia's relations with East Asian states. Accordingly, Saudi–East Asian relations, which have hitherto been understood as consisting of energy producer-consumer relationships, are re-framed as "industrialising–industrialised relationships". This thesis identifies the main dynamics of such relationships as diffusion of industrial technology from East Asian states to Saudi Arabia, which is considered to be a microcosm of a larger collective shift in the global economy, from "divergence" to "convergence" caused by the progress in human resources development (HRD) among developing countries. In order to capture that dynamics, this thesis develops two concepts: "techno-sovereignty" and "techno-diplomacy". Techno-sovereignty assumes a developing state's pursuit of greater level of self-reliance in industrial technology through investment in HRD and avoidance of dependence on single external source of technology. On the other hand, techno-diplomacy is defined as an advanced state's diplomatic strategy of implementing the transfer of industrial technology to a developing state in order to acquire other types of gain from that state in return. Saudi Arabia's pursuit of techno-sovereignty has been implemented in two steps: first, to invite foreign direct investment (FDI) from multiple advanced states for establishing industrial production; and, second, to "Saudise" the production over the years through the transfer of knowledge, skills and technologies from the foreign investor to national industrial workers. Saudi–East Asian industrial relations have followed these patterns: Japan has practiced techno-diplomacy towards Saudi Arabia mainly in return for oil; and Taiwan has done so mainly in return for diplomatic recognition – since Taipei has been in competition with Beijing since 1949 regarding its international legitimacy. Those quid pro quo relations have provided Riyadh with strong bargaining chips vis-à-vis Tokyo and Taipei in demanding industrial cooperation from them in the past decades. Currently, as the focus of industrial diversification in Saudi Arabia shifts from capital-intensive heavy industries to labour-intensive manufacturing industries, the insufficiency in HRD in Saudi Arabia, deriving from the "rentier" nature of its society, increasingly poses obstacles to further progress of the process. Accordingly, East Asian states' contributions to the development of HRD institutions in Saudi Arabia have been coming to the fore in their bilateral industrial relations in addition to the FDI, the trend which is likely to remain important in the coming years.
Supervisor: Robins, Philip Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available
Keywords: International studies ; Saudi Arabia ; East Asia ; Japan ; Taiwan ; China