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Foster in his article “Islamic Perspectives on the Law of Business” explores the contemporary trends and events that strongly reveal the importance of Islamic law in business affairs. This article reviews the role of Islamic law in business associations across the world. While the majority of Islamic news and laws have come to the limelight in relation to violence, terrorism and Islamic fundamentalism, the discussions have ignored the influence of these laws on other essential issues such as finance and commerce.
In the Islamic states, the faith and the law are intertwined in such a way that the government legislations are put under immense pressure to Islamicise the legal orders in such countries. While Islamic finance and commerce has recently rapidly expanded, the knowledge on the actual Islamic law is significantly very low and therefore this article by foster seeks to rectify the notion that The Islamic law in relation to business is primitive and also inferior to the western models. Foster cites the only known facts to only being that the law forbids any interests on finances and also that Sharia is a religious law (Foster 8).
The Sharia has a well sophisticated system of commercial law because even before his mission on prophesy, Muhammad was respected arbitrator and a trader therefore, the Islamic law on commerce is dealt in a favorable environment. Being based on religion unlike the western laws on commerce, the Sharia law binds the same moral and ethical standards to businesses as they would apply on other areas of life. Justice is paramount on commercial law as it would apply on other moral standards. Other principles apart from justice that relate to commercial law based on the Sharia law include; removing hardship and bringing ease, permissibility, fair attitude towards property, profits and risks, forbidden things, respect for a contractual obligation, the contract system and the prohibition of riba or interest (Foster 11).
This article is quite resourceful in understanding the standing of the Sharia law, its history, its jurisprudence and its comparison to the other laws especially the western law. Therefore, the Islamic law is eminently practical and functional too in the contemporary social and economic environments in regards to business associations. In conclusion, the article seems to argue in favor of Sharia law being used together with other secular laws in the provision of a favorable environment around business associations.
Kobrin (2009) in his article “Private Political Authority and Public Responsibility: Transnational Politics, Transnational Firms, and Human Rights”, he critically reviews transnational companies that have turned into international actors, with significant political authority and power. Kobrin explains that such authority needs liability and responsibility specifically with regard to direct liability as a result of their frequent violation of human rights. The present scene as he argues is anarchic and the presence of multiple authorities in the jurisdiction of borders between private and public spheres of life has not helped the already deteriorating situation (Kobrin 350).
To force Transnational Corporations (TNCs) to be more socially responsible has been provided by various mechanisms such as international law and voluntary agreements aimed at imposing direct responsibility on these international actors. Due to the ambiguity surrounding these scenarios, Kobrin offers his solution by advocating for a private-public hybrid regime that has to rely on the non-hierarchical mechanism of compliance. To him, the contemporary of the emerging transnational order will effectively and consistently be tackled by such a structure.
This article notes that its only states who have so far been held responsible and liable for national matters while in reality there has been various multinational corporations that nevertheless have been influential in national and international politics. The article cites the case of a Canadian oil company Talisman Energy that entered the Sudan in Africa in the year 1998 amidst a civil war. The company was accused by activists of violation of human rights. The proceeds from oil were used in the fuelling of the conflict and its continued operation in a war zone led to gross violation of human rights especially of those civilians who were forcefully displaced from their lands (Kobrin 360).
In addressing this issue, Kobrin asks an important question, “what is expected of a company?”This is because the conventionally designed corporate social responsibility initiatives seem to be inadequate in the world of today where such TNCs possess enormous social political power just like the national governments operating in those regions. The article reveals one important fact, that unlike the old days where the governments were the only national and international actors, the present world is characterized by other private powerful actors that are however not bound by national borders and social contracts like governments are bound to their electorates (Kobrin 370). The TNCs have corporate social responsibilities that however are not adequate in holding the companies responsible to violations of human rights that fall outside that corporate social responsibility.
Michael Dorelli and Philip Scaletta (2011) in their article “Recent Developments in Indiana Business and Contract Law” review how recent significant court rulings have impacted on business and business owners, directors, officers and ultimately shareholders. This article specifically is important to in-house counsel, business owners and litigators and transactional corporate lawyers.
On the issue of those shareholders who would wish to lose the shares during an event of a business merger, the court set precedence that the agency fixing the share value in readiness to compensating the shareholder that issues to be considered to include; the asset value, market value, earning prospects, dividends and the nature of the company or enterprise (Dorelli and Scaletta 1075). These principles were attributed to the principle of fair value of a share as defined in the business law. Previously, the experts in deciding the ‘fair value’ of a share did not consider the company’s prospects and future plans. The Indiana state already has elaborate sufficient laws on matters relating to businesses and the recent courts decisions are not new but just a highlight of laws that people ignore. Those highlights especially touched on to business defamation, tortuous interference with a business contract on issues relating to business torts, Piercing the corporate veil, non competition business covenants.
The article in detail analyses the recent court rulings on the issue of contract performance and breach by looking at forfeiture, statute of frauds, economic loss doctrine, and indemnity in business (Dorelli and Scaletta 1080). All these issues are quite relevant to today’s business and hence factual evidence and lessons presented in this article on these recent court decisions puts the business stakeholders at a vantage position with respect to business law in Indiana State.