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Increasing Popular Participation in the Treaty-making Process: The Legislative Process of Section 190 of the 2007 Constitution of Thailand

Discussion Papers

No.357

July 2012

ABSTRACT

Historically, the authority to conclude international treaties was exclusively exercised by administrative bodies (or the chief of state). However, recent studies pointed out that the present legislative bodies have come to play a more active role through ratification or the review of treaties in European and American countries. Harrington (2005) studied judicial reform in British dominions and criticized the past executive-dominant treaty-making process as a “democratic deficit” due to a fear that under this system the nation might be bound by international agreements for which a consensus had not been obtained. These studies indicated that people’s participation in the treaty-making process has increased on a global basis, but neither of them provides sufficient descriptive evidence regarding why and how such procedures were established. The present paper therefore attempts to solve these questions by analyzing the legislative and political process of the treaty-making procedure reform in Thailand’s 2007 constitution as a case study.


Keywords: treaty-making, participation, constitution, Thailand
JEL classification: K00, Z00

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